Winnipeg’s defense was further decimated on Tuesday, as the club announced Jacob Trouba would be out of the lineup ’til February with an upper-body injury.
Trouba, 20, joins fellow blueliners Tobias Enstrom (lower body) and Zach Bogosian (lower-body) on the shelf. Enstrom and Bogosian aren’t expected back until early- to mid-January, meaning Winnipeg is now without its top-three minutes leaders for a significant period of time.
(Prior to getting hurt, Enstrom led all skaters with 25:07 TOI per game. Trouba was second with 23:34, while Bogosian third with 22:47.)
It’s unclear when or how Trouba got hurt. He received his usual heavy workload in Saturday’s 4-1 loss to Anaheim.
While his departure affects the defense, losing Trouba is significant from an offensive perspective as well. The former first-round pick (ninth overall, 2012) led Jets defensemen in scoring with 12 points in 20 games and was a mainstay on the power play, sitting one back of Dustin Byfuglien for the team lead in man-advantage assists.
The big question for Winnipeg now is, who fills the gaps?
As it stands, the club’s top six defense is comprised of Byfuglien (moved back from forward), Adam Pardy, Paul Postma, Mark Stuart, Ben Chiarot and Grant Clitsome, who was recently activated from IR. That’s not an overwhelmingly deep group, so it’s no surprise that Winnipeg Free Press scribe Gary Lawless reported the Jets are shopping for a defenseman.