WINNIPEG – With the Winnipeg Jets playoff chances all but dead, it was only a matter of time until players start shutting down. The first to go – Shawn Matthias.
The 29-year forward will undergo season-ending surgery to repair a tear in his shoulder. It’s expected to take Matthias several months to recover following the operation.
“Shawn had a pre-existing labral tear that he’s been trying to deal with,” head coach Paul Maurice said. “It just got to the point where he can’t.”
Matthias was limited to just 45 games this season due to injury. He finishes the year with eight goals and four assists. But what the Jets will miss most about Matthias is his veteran presence.
“He is playing with two young guys in (Joel) Armia and (Adam) Lowry,” Maurice said. “I think he helped them in a lot of ways to try and define that offensive zone pressure game, that good physical game. He’s been strong for us.”
Matthias joins an already packed sick bay, the majority of which is made up of defencemen. Paul Postma is listed as day-to-day with a lower-body injury. Toby Enstrom continues to recover from a concussion he suffered in Winnipeg’s loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Mar. 8.
The swelling on Jacob Trouba’s upper-body injury has gone down but he’s still longer than day-to-day. Tyler Myers meanwhile is making some improvements and isn’t far off from his return. The 27-year-old has missed the last 55 games with a lower-body injury.
With the influx of injuries on the blueline, the Jets have called up Brian Strait from the Manitoba Moose. The NHL veteran has two goals and ten assists in 50 AHL games this season.