Injuries haven’t been kind to Golden Knights defenseman Luca Sbisa this season. He has dealt with multiple lower-body injuries already (costing him a combined 16 games) while missing another 16 due to a hand issue. He had just got back into the lineup two weeks ago and now will be on the shelf again. The team announced (Twitter link) that Sbisa will be “out for a while” with an undisclosed injury so as a result, he will likely be heading to the injured reserve list once again. When healthy, the 28-year-old has put together a decent season with 14 points (2-12-14) in just 30 games while averaging 19:31 per night, his highest average since 2012-13. Unfortunately for him, his trouble staying healthy enough to play will likely undo overshadow that as he gets set to hit the free agent market in July.
Elsewhere in the Pacific:
- Although the Coyotes find themselves well out of a playoff spot and have top center prospect Dylan Strome lighting it up in the AHL, assistant GM Steve Sullivan acknowledged to Arizona Sports’ Craig Morgan that there is no firm plan in place to recall the soon-to-be 21-year-old for some more NHL time down the stretch. Strome has been unproductive in his appearances with the big club over his career and has just a single point in 11 games this season. However, he has shown that he is among the top players at the minor league level with 48 points in just 41 games. He remains a big part of their future plans so it seems likely that he will get another look over the next few weeks.
- The inclusion of winger Jussi Jokinen in the trade that saw Thomas Vanek join Columbus came as a bit of a surprise considering he had cleared waivers mere hours before the swap was announced. Iain MacIntyre of Sportsnet notes that the Blue Jackets insisted that the Canucks take him as part of the deal to help free up some wiggle room under the 50-contract limit. Meanwhile, instead of assigning the 34-year-old to the minors as they are free to do since he went unclaimed, Vancouver has opted to keep him up with the big club although it remains to be seen how much ice time he will actually receive down the stretch.