Sports Tyler Myers’ ‘freak accident’ will test Jets’ defensive depth

21:51  16 april  2018
21:51  16 april  2018 Source:   Sportsnet

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Big test for Jets ’ defensive depth with Enstrom out eight weeks. Last season, the Jets had to deal with the losses of Enstrom, Jacob Trouba and Dustin Byfuglien, not to mention nearly a full season without the services of Tyler Myers , and that put the onus on blueliners such as Paul Postma, Ben

Get the latest news, stats, videos, highlights and more about Winnipeg Jets defenseman Tyler Myers on Myers picked up an assist in Monday's 6-5 victory over the Senators. (about 5 days ago) Data Provided By.

a group of hockey players on the field© Chris O'Meara/AP

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The depth of the Winnipeg Jets blue line is about to get tested.

Next to Dustin Byfuglien, Tyler Myers has been the Jets’ most impactful defenceman in this series, and he walked out of Xcel Energy Center with a slight limp Sunday night after the Minnesota Wild trounced their visitors 6-2.

Injury to insult.

Jets coach Paul Maurice only said he “didn’t love” the play that knocked his 18-minute guy out of Game 3 and expected the league to look at it because, hey, it looks at everything.

Myers’ undisclosed lower-body injury was sustained during an sloppy-looking collision. Checking winger Marcus Foligno was rushing to Myers’ point when he stumbled and his fist hit the back of Myers’ knee, causing the lanky defender to crumple awkwardly feet-first into the boards.

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Foligno said Monday that he’s watched the collision 100 times and maintained no ill intent.

“I’m going down for a blocked shot, and I think he’s going by me and he pulls up at the last second. I stumble, and I mean I guess I catch him on the way down. It was kind of a freak accident,” said Foligno, who leads all Wild skaters in hits.

“I played with him in Buffalo. I mean, we’re not friends over the playoffs, but we are friends off the ice, and it’s something I wouldn’t do to a friend, so it’s all good.”

It’s less than good for Winnipeg, which is already dealing with injuries to regular blueliners Dmitry Kulikov and Tobias Enstrom. Tucker Poolman, 24, is the likely next man up. He’s played all of 24 career NHL games.

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Winnipeg has no update on the severity of Myers’ injury, which has some diehard Jets fans calling foul. (Jets centre Adam Lowry dismissed it as an “awkward” play with no intent to injure, and we tend to agree.)

“He fell. Anybody that thinks anything different, that there was something to it, is trying to create something that’s not there,” Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said. “[Foligno] went to block a shot and he fell. That was it.”

Foligno was happy to discuss the incident at length Monday. If he’s guilty, he’s a heck of a poker player.

“Honestly, I did not punch his knee,” he said. “My stick’s in my hand and I think I’m trying to grab whatever I can before going down. No, there was no punching motion. I’m sure a lot of Winnipeg fans are saying that, but, no, I’m not trying to hurt someone out there, especially a good friend like Myers.

“You never want to see a tweaked ankle, whatever it is, a knee, lower body in that sense. We’ve had that on our side, too, with [Ryan] Suter’s injury going into the boards. You just hope it’s nothing serious.”

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Myers had been excellent through two and a half games, scoring twice on his stingy summer training pal, Devan Dubnyk, contributing an assist, and presenting a confident right-shot power-play option.

“You look at the way he’s been playing, he’s been one of their best D-men if not their best D-man, so that hurts,” Dubnyk said.

“I certainly don’t have any sympathy for them, other than you never want to see somebody you know well to get hurt. We certainly don’t have any sympathy for them in this room.

“We’re missing a relatively important defenceman ourselves, so it’s just the way things go.”

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