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This article was published 25/11/2018 (1067 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
ST. LOUIS — A big hit has sidelined one of the Winnipeg Jets’ most versatile players.
Andrew Copp suffered a concussion after Minnesota’s J.T. Brown took him into the boards in the third period of Friday afternoon’s game in St. Paul. Copp appeared to strike his head on the divider by the Winnipeg bench and was down on the ice for some time. He went straight to the dressing room and didn’t return.
Coach Paul Maurice confirmed Saturday that Copp went through concussion protocol and is now out indefinitely, with no timetable set for his return. As for the hit, Maurice said he doesn’t believe it was a dirty play even if the result was a bad one.
"I don’t think there was necessarily intent and (Copp) did turn at the end, but it was pretty heavy into the wall," Maurice said
Copp had one goal and two assists in 21 games this season.
Brendan Lemieux took Copp’s spot in the lineup Saturday night, playing for the first time in eight games. That included being suspended for a pair, and being a healthy scratch for five more.
Lemieux made the most of the opportunity by scoring his first of the season in the final minute of play to cap off the 8-4 victory over St. Louis. Lemieux was slotted on a line with Jack Roslovic and Nic Petan, who both had assists on his goal.
Mathieu Perreault moved up to fill Copp’s place on the line with Adam Lowry and Brandon Tanev. Perreault appeared injure his arm late in Saturday’s game, but Maurice believes the veteran forward will be OK.
If Copp remains out for an extended period, the Jets will have to recall a forward from the Manitoba Moose, as they currently have no healthy extras on the roster. Kristian Vesalainen would have been a likely option, but he returned to Europe last week to finish the season in the KHL with his hometown Jokerit. The Jets can’t call him back as part of the terms of his contract.
Other options on the farm include newly reacquired Marko Dano, recent free-agent signing Logan Shaw and second-year forward Mason Appleton.
Winnipeg has managed to stay in good health so far this season through 22 games. Dmitry Kulikov is the only other play currently on the injured list, and he’s expected to miss at least a few more weeks.
Mike McIntyre grew up wanting to be a professional wrestler. But when that dream fizzled, he put all his brawn into becoming a professional writer.