The New Jersey Devils have announced that forward Nico Hischier is out due to a sinus fracture and concussion protocol. The 22-year-old hasn’t played since February 27th against the Washington Capitals. He is considered week-to-week at this time. Corey Masisak of The Athletic was among those to announced the injury late Thursday afternoon.
#NJDevils announce Nico Hischier has a sinus fracture and is in concussion protocol. He’s been placed on IR and is considered week-to-week.
— Corey Masisak (@cmasisak22) March 4, 2021
Devils Nico Hischier Out
It’s been a difficult year for Hischier. He has appeared in just five of New Jersey’s 18 games. While he does have a solid two goals and three points in those five games, it’s just not enough ice time to make an impact. This is an unfortunate injury as Hischier’s scoring rate was essentially the same as it has been since he entered the NHL and some of his advanced stats were trending upward. Hischier’s Corsi For is currently a career-high 53.4 percent and his faceoff win percentage is way up at 58.4, though obviously over a small sample. 2020-21 could still be a breakout campaign for the young skater, but he needs to recover from this current situation first.
The Devils famously selected Hischier first overall in the 2017 Draft when there were such skaters as Miro Heiskanen and Cale Makar available. However, the 6’1″ Swiss gentleman has been perfectly fine. He has 53 goals and 138 points in 214 NHL games. That isn’t a blistering rate, but it doesn’t help that New Jersey has struggled to build a complete team. There is certainly talent on the roster, but it’s taken longer to accumulate than one might expect. The good thing is that most of the core is young and cost-controlled for several years. There is plenty of time to build a contender with Hischier as the main contributor.
How New Jersey Replaces Hischier
There really isn’t much that the team needs to do. They have played most of the season without Hischier already. This latest setback merely means more ice time for some of the Devils’ other developing stars. Jack Hughes is having a strong sophomore campaign and Yegor Sharangovich has flashed talent as well. The organization just needs to hope that the existing roster can keep things afloat for a potential playoff run with a full complement of skaters. Don’t be surprised if a guy like Pavel Zacha gets a shot on the top line.
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