After the dismissal of Guy Boucher, there were not many tiles left that could fall on the heads of the Ottawa Senators.
But there was another that hit them on Wednesday when interim head coach Marc Crawford said star defenseman Thomas Chabot broke his toe by blocking a throw last Monday in Philadelphia. .
The Quebec back who finishes his second season in the NHL – his first full – will see his medical record be re-evaluated “week by week,” according to Crawford. With only 12 games remaining in the regular season, it’s possible that Chabot, the team’s top scorer with 49 points, including 13 goals, will not come back until it wraps up on April 6th.
“It’s bad news for Thomas, but he’s really hoping to come back to play before the end of the season. Our doctors and therapists will keep us informed of its progress, “said Crawford.
This is the second time this season that Chabot is seriously injured, who missed eight games due to a shoulder injury in late December. He finished Monday’s game, a 3-2 loss, and even got a pass on a goal late in the third period. He had blocked Ivan Provorov’s shot at 1:33 of the second period.
“He blocked the throw and underwent an x-ray during the match, he was able to finish it and in fact, he skated very well. He said it did not affect him that much. But when we look at it later, it has been determined that he will have to rest and we think it will be a matter of weeks, “added Crawford.
A member of Canada’s senior national team last year, Chabot is expected to be invited again by the latter to take part in the next World Hockey Championship, which will take place from May 10 to 26 in Slovakia.
“He’s had such a good season this year that I guess he’ll probably get that chance. This tournament does not start until early May and at that point, I guess it should be fully restored, “Crawford thinks.
Aged 22, Chabot participated in the All-Star Game last January in San Jose and his 49 points are the eighth highest among defensemen on the Bettman circuit this season. He is the most used player of the club, averaging 24:04 minutes on the ice in every game.
His absence should allow rookie Christian Wolanin to take on more responsibilities in the coming weeks, having collected two assists in seven games since his last recall of the Belleville school club in late February. He totals three goals and four assists in 19 matches divided into three stays in the capital.
“He’ll probably take Thomas’s place on the first unit of the power play. Wolanin arrived and we saw him play very well. Guys like [Dylan] DeMelo and Cody Ceci have recently had more chances on the power play. When you have a Thomas Chabot, you will use it whenever you can. Wolanin will play a little more, that’s for sure, “said Crawford.
Meanwhile, defenseman Christian Jaros is recovering from a groin injury and should be able to return to the game on Thursday night when the Blues de Saint-Louis visit Ottawa.
Lajoie wounded in Belleville
In the absence of Thomas Chabot, the Senators could normally turn to a defenseman who was at the forefront of their power play earlier this season and who has 7 goals and 15 points in 56 games with them this season.
Released in Belleville last month to allow him to regain confidence when he presented a differential of minus-25, Maxime Lajoie is however not available at present, having missed the last weekend in Cleveland because of an injury in the upper body, revealed head coach Troy Mann in interview with TSN 1200.
The Franco-Albertan back has played only three games with the small Senators, collecting a single pass. It does, however, have a plus-2 positive differential.
“We’re expecting him to get back to the game soon,” said Mann, who also hinted that forwards Morgan Klimchuk and Andrew Sturtz have injuries that will not allow them to play again in 2018-2019 .