New Jersey Devils Goaltender Out Indefinitely

Mackenzie Blackwood Out

Another injury occurs and it concerns the New Jersey Devils. After exiting the game midway through the second period against the Edmonton Oilers, New Jersey Devils goalie Mackenzie Blackwood is out indefinitely. After going down awkwardly after making a save in that game, the injury is much worse than anticipated.

Mackenzie Blackwood Out Indefinitely With MCL Sprain

It appears Blackwood has sprained his MCL and will have further testing done by doctors tomorrow to evaluate his timetable to return. For a player that missed a large chunk of last season injured, having to miss time again is a crushing blow. The best thing for the Devils is they do not have to run with AHL Level goaltending and can weather the storm without him.

How This Impacts The Devils

This is not the best news the team was hoping for, and certainly not Blackwood. Hopefully it’s weeks and not months, but even then the team is equipped to weather the storm. New Jersey has already recalled Akira Schmid from the Utica Comets, but he won’t be thrust into a starting role. That job belongs to Vitek Vanecek.

Vanecek has been much better since the opening night start against the Detroit Red Wings (where he allowed five goals). Since then, he has won all of his starts and has a 5-1 record. In those starts, he has not allowed more than three goals, and in the Oilers game, he was only responsible for one of the three. Vanecek owns 2.01 goals against average and .908 save percentage. He still sports a -1.7 goals saved above expected, but he has played well for the team. Despite Blackwood going down, Vanecek is capable of holding down the fort. Now the team has to hope he doesn’t go down either.

The Season Thus Far

Blackwood is down and out but, he has played well to start. After a rough start to the year, he’s turned the corner. He owns a 2.79 goals-against average, and a subpar .880 save percentage. After being shaky in the first game, he earned a star of the week award around the league. Blackwood was off to a better start than last year and was gaining confidence in his play. Hopefully, this injury does not derail that and he can return to playing the way he was.

The Devils Are Marching Onward

Things are looking bright for the New Jersey Devils. They are in first place in the Metropolitan Division and third in the entire league. Even with Blackwood down, they are weathering the storm and are on a six-game winning streak. Hopefully, he can return and help form a nice tandem in the crease.