The Chicago Blackhawks announced on Wednesday morning that forward Alex Nylander will be sidelined for four-to-six months following knee surgery on Monday.
The surgery was to repair a meniscus tear in his left knee. That timeline could keep him out for the entire season.
According to the team, Nylander was injured during the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs. He had attempted rest and a conservative training approach, but the issue resurfaced when he started to skate again, prompting the surgery.
Nylander was acquired by the Blackhawks prior to the 2019-20 season in a trade that sent defenseman Henri Jokiharju to the Buffalo Sabres. It was a surprising trade at the time, given that Jokiharju figured to be a big part of the Blackhawks’ future defense and Nylander’s stock had seemingly fallen in Buffalo. He appeared in 65 regular season games for the Blackhawks in his debut season with the team, scoring 10 goals and 26 total points. He was scoreless in the team’s eight playoff games.
The Blackhawks were hoping he could take a step forward this season and show that he could be part of their future. But those plans will obviously have to be put on hold.
The 22-year-old Nylander was a first-round draft pick (No. 8 overall) by the Sabres during the 2016 draft. He is in the final year of his entry-level contract and will be a restricted free agent after this season.