Chicago Blackhawks rookie phenomenon Connor Bedard I landed on injured reserve With a broken jaw on Saturday after taking a hard hit from New Jersey Devils veteran Brendan Smith.
Bedard was elbowed midway through the first half at the Prudential Center on Friday and exited the game. Smith's hit didn't look sloppy, but it left Bedard clutching his mouth and heading to the locker room.
Blackhawk Announced later Bedard, 18, will not return to the game without specifying an injury.
After the gameBlackhawks coach Luke Richardson said the team will learn more about Bedard's status on Saturday.
“I think he hit his head. I'm not sure if he was, I just got there now and I didn't hear anything other than everyone going home tonight.”
When asked if Bedard was in the concussion protocol, Richardson said he hadn't heard that and, again, he would know more on Saturday.
Sloppy or not, Bedard's Blackhawks teammates did not take the hit kindly.
Center Philipp Kurashev immediately faced Smith on the ice, followed by left winger Nick Foligno. All three players ended up at the bottom of a pile behind the net. Smith was later assessed a harsh penalty, while Foligno conceded two of them.
It continued at the beginning of the second half. Foligno was clearly not satisfied with the final round, as he faced Smith in a fight that lasted 75 seconds. It ended up being Foligno's last time on the ice, as a Blackhawk He announced that he too would not be returning to the game.
Foligno landed on injured reserve alongside Bedard with a broken left index finger.
Finally, it was one of the most controversial games of the season, as 64 minutes of penalties between the two teams combined in a 4-2 win for the Devils. The Blackhawks bore the brunt of those minutes with 38 minutes.
Just a day earlier, Bedard was announced as the youngest player ever named to the NHL All-Star team, marking a season in which the 2023 No. 1 overall pick lived up to the hype as a generational talent.
The Blackhawks' next game is scheduled for Sunday at home against the Calgary Flames.
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