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Bedard Undergoes Surgery For Fractured Jaw, Will Miss 6-8 Weeks

Connor Bedard underwent surgery for his fractured jaw and is expected to miss 6-8 weeks and then wear a shield upon return.

Connor Bedard will miss approximately 6-8 weeks after undergoing surgery to repair his fractured jaw. Bedard took a heavy open-ice hit from New Jersey Devils defenseman Brendan Smith in the first period of Chicago’s game on Jan. 5. The team placed Bedard on injured reserve the following day. The No. 1 pick in the 2023 NHL Draft leads the Blackhawks and all rookies with 33 points (15 goals, 18 assists) in 39 games. He was named to the 2024 NHL All-Star Game on Thursday.

It will be fascinating to see how much Bedard tries to return before the estimated timeline. Blackhawks coach Luke Richardson said Tuesday that Bedard will probably start skating as soon as possible. “He’ll have protection on for a while once he comes back but he’s a guy that’s probably already talking about trying to get on the ice,” Richardson said prior to a 2-1 loss to the Edmonton Oilers.

“He’s the type of guy who wants back out there. Once something like that heals enough, he’ll be out on the ice skating. He just won’t be able to take contact for a while.” Which means, unfortunately, that even though their likely won’t be much contact, Bedard will miss the All-Star Game on February 3rd in Toronto.

Connor Bedard Blackhawks

This is probably going to be one of his first full injuries. It may take him a little bit to feel comfortable when he gets back and trust that.” From there, one has to wonder how much work he’ll have to do to catch back up in the Calder Trophy race. He’s the favorite to win it right now, but 8 weeks gives ample opportunity for other rookies to step up.

Richardson is familiar with the injury. He broke his jaw when he was a defenseman for the Columbus Blue Jackets. “I think I missed about five, 5 1/2 weeks, then I had to play with a face shield for a couple of more weeks after that, maybe a month,” Richardson said.

Forward Nick Foligno was also placed on injured reserve Saturday with a fractured left finger. He fought Smith at 5:04 of the second and did not play the third. There is no timeline for his return. The list of injured players for the Blackhawks is pretty incredible. Right now, they are without Seth Jones, Taylor Hall, Tyler Johnson, Andreas Athanasiou, Anthony Beauvillier, Foligno and Bedard.

Next: Teams Reaching Out to Senators Regarding Jakob Chychrun Trade

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