Now that the Winnipeg Jets know they'll be without defenceman Zach Bogosian for at least four months, their plans must turn to how will they replace him. One can expect it will a quiet tweak rather than a major fix-up.
Bogosian had successful surgery on his wrist Friday and is expected to make a complete recovery, but will be out of action for the next four to six months.
The Jets are left with Dustin Byfuglien, Toby Entstrom, Mark Stuart, Ron Hainsey, Grant Clitsome and Paul Postma on the blue-line.
All but Postma were regulars last season and he signed a one-way deal earlier in the off-season to guarantee his presence on the opening day roster.
The Jets also have Zach Redmond in the system and he could get a long look if and when training camp opens following CBA negotiations.
GM Kevin Cheveldayoff could also dip into the free-agent market but there's not a lot out there and he'll want to watch his dollars as Bogosian's salary will count against the cap when he returns.
Bogosian was struggling with chronic pain in his wrist going back to his time with the Atlanta Thrashers and surgery was always an option if the injury worsened. When he left Winnipeg at the end of the season there was no reason to expect surgery would be required this off-season.
Bogosian worked out this summer, however, and when he returned to the ice and began shooting the pain was at a new level. After consulting with the Jets and their medical staff, surgery was chosen as the best option.
Jets head physician Dr. Peter MacDonald made the following statement through the Jets:
"After speaking with Dr. Thomas Graham (Friday) morning, surgery on the chronic ligament tear in the right wrist of Winnipeg Jets defenceman Zach Bogosian was successful. The prognosis for a return to hockey from this type of surgery is typically between four and six months."
Bogosian was operated on by Graham at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio.
Cheveldayoff issued the following statement:
"We are pleased the procedure on Zach's right wrist was successful this morning. This wrist has been an issue which has troubled him for the past couple of seasons dating back to his time in Atlanta and forced him to miss games with the Jets last season. After resuming his on-ice training earlier this month, the wrist problem flared up again to the point surgery was deemed the best option by both Dr. MacDonald and Dr. Graham. While we are disappointed Zach will be out for an extended period of time, we look forward to getting him to Winnipeg to begin his rehab with our training staff and getting him back on the ice as soon as possible."
Dr. Graham has assisted the Jets' medical and training staff with other players as well as performing surgery on numerous players in the NHL, NBA and Major League Baseball.
Bogosian, 22, had five goals and 25 assists in 65 games last season.