The Winnipeg Jets are expected to have all star defenceman Dustin Byfuglien in the lineup for tonight’s game at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. According to media reports via twitter, Byfuglien skated this morning with a few of the players who have been regular healthy scratches, and afterwards was proclaimed ready to play by head coach Paul Maurice.
Byfuglien suffered what looked to be a significant injury to his left shoulder during the 3rd period of the Jets 5-4 overtime victory versus Nashville Thursday Night. The Jets big blue liner landed awkwardly after getting tangled up with Predators 4th line forward Cody Bass. Ironically, it was Bass who Byfuglien laid out, and then fought with on the opening shift of the Jets first pre season game against Columbus on September 20/11.
When Byfuglien went down, the Jets were in complete control with a 4-1 lead. But that 3 goal advantage disappeared over the final 11 minutes, so his availability for tonight can only be seen as a very good thing for a Winnipeg team still 4 points out of a playoff spot. And looking to end an 0-6-1 slide in the second game of back to backs after starting the year 2-0.
The Jets are 2-1 vs Minnesota heading into their 3rd and final appearance of the regular season in the Twin Cities. And the Wild will be looking to get back on track after going 0-2-1 in their last 3 games on home ice.