The two newcomers to the Eastern conference have had their fair share of injuries this season. Detroit has been without the services of key players such as Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Danny Keyser, and Jimmy Howard this season. Columbus has been hit with the injury bug as well, with Sergei Bobrovsky, Marian Gaborik, James Wisniewski and Nathan Horton currently sitting on injured reserve. The team recently lost the services of Dalton Prout and Derek MacKenzie during Monday’s loss to Winnipeg.
The latest player that will be sidelined for several weeks is Jared Boll, as he will be missing for the next 3-4 months as he recovers from a torn ankle tendon. The longest-tenured member of the Blue Jackets underwent surgery Monday and depending on how his recovery is handled he could return for the final stretch of games in the regular season.
Columbus currently sits tied for fifth in the Metropolitan division. They are three points behind Carolina for third in the division (the final automatic playoff spot) and five points behind Toronto for the final wildcard spot. Their road to the playoffs has gotten more difficult with this latest injury. “Our initial hope was that Jared would be able to return to the lineup with rest and rehabilitation, but it became apparent over the past few days that surgery was the best course of action,” said general manager Jarmo Kekalainen. “We’re disappointed for Jared as he has worked very hard and is an important part of our team, but we expect him to make a full recovery and hopefully return to the lineup later this season.”
This season, Boll has appeared in 21 of the teams 34 games. In a mostly enforcer role he has one goal along with 38 penalty minutes. He currently sits fourth on Columbus’ all-time games played list at 388. He signed a contract extension worth three years and $5.1 million in September.