Chicago Blackhawks young star Connor Bedard is expected to miss six to eight weeks after undergoing surgery to repair his fractured jaw.
The team confirmed the 18-year-old rookie’s return to play schedule on Wednesday. That means he will miss the NHL All-Star Game on February 3 in Toronto, certainly a big blow for the league.
Bedard was injured when he was hit by New Jersey Devils defenseman Brendan Smith midway through the first period of a 4-2 loss to the Devils last Friday night. The first pick of the last draft was hit after carrying the puck in the middle of the opposing zone.
This season, Bedard has 15 goals and 18 assists in 39 games.
The Blackhawks’ long list of injured forwards also includes Nick Foligno (fractured left finger), Anthony Beauvillier (left wrist), Tyler Johnson (right foot) and Andreas Athanasiou (groin). Joey Anderson and Taylor Raddysh, however, returned to the team in Tuesday night’s 2-1 loss to Edmonton.