In a season stacked with rookie phenoms, Werenski stands as one of the most deserving of a Calder Trophy nomination. He proved his offensive awareness with 11 goals, 47 points, with 22 on the power play, and finished with a plus-17 rating at just 19 years old.
Unfortunately for the Blue Jackets, the stud defenseman will miss the remainder of the NHL playoffs with a facial fracture he suffered in the third period of Game 3 against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
He tweeted a picture of his eye and, well, it makes sense why he will miss the rest of the postseason. Finishing the playoffs with a goal in three games, Werenski will be a hard asset to replace.
Down three games to none, the Blue Jackets are an in a tough spot. Even if they can squeeze out a win at home, Werenski’s loss, coupled with a 3-1 deficit heading back to Pittsburgh, is an almost impossible feat. The Penguins are hungry to repeat, and the Blue Jackets are having trouble keeping them from scoring down the stretch.
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Despite a 3-1 lead heading into the second period, the Blue Jackets were outscored 4-1 in the final two periods. Jake Guentzel scored his first career hat-trick, and Sergei Bobrovsky faced 47 shots. In Game 2, the Blue Jackets entered the third period losing 2-1 and lost the game 4-1.
The Blue Jackets come out with plenty of energy but seem to falter towards the end of the game. With Werenski on the shelf, it will be interesting to see how they will enter Game 4.
They were able to generate offense in Game 3 but lost their legs in the third period. They will need to focus on keeping the high energy all game and take advantage of any mistakes. The Penguins look primed for another championship run, but wit would be nice to see the Blue Jackets slow them down a bit.