For a bubble team in mid-March, it’s a big blow any time a player gets injured. The Jets’ goal of bringing playoff hockey back to Winnipeg for the first time since the original team relocated to Phoenix got harder when Chris Thorburn sustained a lower body injury on Friday. Thorburn is expected to be sidelined for at least three weeks, so it’s entirely possible that he will not return before the end of the regular season.
Thorburn doesn’t get a lot of playing time, but he has been a physical presence. The Jets do have Eric Fehr, who has been a healthy scratch since Feb. 21, but Fehr doesn’t through his body around as much. Jets coach Claude Noel might dip into the AHL to replace Thorburn, but he’s also thinking about double shifting Blake Wheeler or Evander Kane.