The Chicago Blackhawks placed their young star Connor Bedard on injured reserve on Saturday due to a broken jaw.
Bedard was injured by New Jersey defenseman Brendan Smith midway through the first period of Friday night’s 4-2 loss to the Devils.
Nick Foligno was also added to the injured list with a broken left finger. The Blackhawks, in desperate need of reinforcements, acquired forward Rem Pitlick from Pittsburgh in exchange for a conditional seventh-round pick in 2026.
Bedard, 18, was Chicago’s best player in his first NHL season, living up to the hype surrounding his first-overall selection. Prior to Saturday’s game, he led all NHL rookies with 15 goals and 18 assists in 39 games.
Bedard was selected for the NHL All-Star Game on February 3 in Toronto, and the Blackhawks will play in his hometown of Vancouver on January 22. There was no immediate information on a timetable for the return of Bedard, who was hit after carrying the puck into the offensive zone.
Smith was not penalized on the play, but there was a series of skirmishes between the teams after Bedard left. Foligno, who served as one of Bedard’s mentors during the veteran’s first season in Chicago, left the game after fighting with Smith during the second period.
The Blackhawks have lost five games in a row and seven games out of eight overall. They are 6-19-2 in their last 27 games.