Winnipeg Jets’ Josh Morrissey feeling better, Dustin Byfuglien ready to return
After an overtime loss to the San Jose Sharks, the Winnipeg Jets embarked on a three-game road trip with the status of defenceman Josh Morrissey still to be determined.
Morrissey left Tuesday’s game with an injury, having been hurt in the first period after blocking a shot on the Sharks’ first goal. He returned to the game to start the second period, but only played one shift before leaving the game for good.
“I don’t see this as a long-termer, fellas. There’s nothing structural that concerns us right now,” head coach Paul Maurice told reporters on Wednesday.
“He might be in the lineup tomorrow night. He feels much better today. We got to get him out in the morning skate. If he feels strong enough, we’ll do that. If not, we’ll hold him out and shoot for Ottawa.”
The 23-year-old Morrissey has been extremely durable during his time with the Jets, missing only three games the past two and a half seasons.
“He’s a tough, tough kid,” Maurice said.
“So he’s played with an awful lot. His ‘I’m ready to go’ is a less percentage on some other guys that need to get close to a 100 [per cent] to play,” he added. “So we have to kinda keep an eye on that, but that’s part of being a good pro, making good decisions. It’ll be almost Josh’s decision whether he thinks he can play or not.”
The good news is fellow blueliner Dustin Byfuglien is set to make his return to the lineup on Thursday.
“Just excited to get back to work finally,” Byfuglien told reporters. “Enough banging around in the weight room. Let’s get back to work.”
Sitting out since the end of December, Byfuglien managed to get in some ice fishing while missing the past 15 games with a lower body injury.
“It feels like forever,” Byfuglien said. “It’s never easy to sit here and watch your team play good hockey.”
The Jets were 10-4-1 with Byfuglien out of the lineup.
The Jets are in Montreal to face the Canadiens on Thursday.
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