The Vancouver Canucks injuries keep coming. After a season in which the team lost several of their key players for chunks of time, including Brock Boeser, Sven Baertschi, Chris Tanev, Markus Granlund and Erik Gudbranson among others, the Canucks now have learned that 2017 first-round pick Elias Pettersson, who was playing for Sweden at the IIHF World Championships in Denmark, will miss the rest of the tournament after suffering an injured thumb against Switzerland today, according to international correspondent Uffe Bodin.
ESPN’s Chris Peters reports the injury is a fractured thumb. It’s a setback for Pettersson, who many expect to join the Canucks next season after a monster rookie season in the SHL last season. The 19-year-old center scored 24 goals and 32 assists in 44 regular season games with Vaxjo. However, he even outdid himself in the SHL playoffs by putting up 10 goals and nine assists in 13 games. Combined, he put up the best rookie season in the SHL in the history of the league.
Still unsigned by the Canucks, there is no word or timetable on how long the injury will take to heal or whether this changes the Canucks plan to bring him to the U.S. after the tournament. It was believed the team intended to bring the youngster over this year and move him to the wing to acclimate him to the NHL. Pettersson was the fifth-overall pick in the 2017 draft last year. In five games so far at the World Championships, he had a goal and two assists.