‘Yotes Notes: Jakob Chychrun to miss rest of season
The Coyotes announced Wednesday evening that defenseman Jakob Chychrun will miss the rest of the season with a lower-body injury. The results of Chychrun’s MRI were not made public.
Chychrun was injured late in the first period of a 4-1 win over the Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome on Tuesday. Calgary forward Michael Frolik tripped him from behind with his skate and leg along the end boards. Chychrun fell to the ice backward and stayed down for several minutes.
“I know he’s not a dirty player, but it’s a dirty play,” Arizona coach Rick Tocchet told reporters. “I don’t like it at all. I don’t know how Chych is right now, we’ve got to evaluate him. It’s not good. We’re hoping for the best.”
A league source said Wednesday that there would be no supplemental discipline or fine for Frolik.
Chychrun returned to the lineup on Dec. 6 at Vegas after missing four months following offseason knee surgery. His return came about two months ahead of projections and he scored in his debut. The Coyotes’ Masterton Trophy nominee finished the season with four goals and 14 points in 50 games.
The Coyotes will likely update his status after the season.
SEDINS’ HOME FINALE
The Coyotes have played the part of unwitting spectators at some emotional games this season. They were on hand for the Vegas Golden Knights’ first regular-season game at T-Mobile Arena on Oct. 10 in the wake of mass shootings at the Route 91 Harvest music festival.
They will be the visitors in the final home game for Vancouver Canucks icons Daniel and Henrik Sedin on Thursday at Rogers Arena.
The Sedins announced their retirement in a letter released Monday, ending their 18 seasons with the organization.
“I’m glad I’ll get the chance to play against them one more time before they hang them up,” said Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson, who played with Daniel on the 2014 Swedish Olympic team (Henrik was hurt), and played with both at the World Cup of Hockey in 2016. “Just being around them, they work hard every single day and treat everybody around them very well. Players around the league have a lot of respect for them.”
Both Sedins have topped the 1,000-point plateau — Henrik (1,068) last season; Daniel (1,038) this season — making them two of the 87 players in league history who have reached that milestone. Henrik is currently 66th on the all-time points list; Daniel is 73rd.
Coyotes defenseman and fellow Swede Niklas Hjalmarsson had some epic battles against the Sedins while Hjalmarsson was a member of the Chicago Blackhawks.
“When those two guys were at their best they were one of, if not the toughest lines I’ve ever played against,” Hjalmarsson said. “They just know exactly where the other guy is going to be and they play a little bit different than a lot of lines do so it’s an adjustment. They may not be the fastest guys on the ice but they think the game one step ahead of pretty much everybody else they have played against.”
While much of the hockey community offered somber reactions to the Sedins’ retirement announcement, Finnish goalie Antti Raanta expressed the sentiment of a rival.
“They have been so many times our Finnish killers when the national teams have played against each other,” Raanta said. “I think there’s going to be some happy faces in Finland for sure when they retire.”
Raanta’s remarks were not intended as a statement of good riddance. They were intended as the ultimate compliment.
“How long they have been here and how long they have been at the top of their game, it’s unbelievable,” he said. “They have been the face of the franchise for so long. It’s going to be a huge loss for Vancouver for sure.”
— The Coyotes recalled defenseman Dakota Mermis on an emergency basis from Tucson of the American Hockey League to take Chychrun’s place. NHL rules stipulate that teams must carry a minimum six defensemen on their active rosters. With Hjalmarsson and Demers out for the season, and now Chychrun, too, the Coyotes only had five before the recall: Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Alex Goligoski, Kevin Connauton, Luke Schenn and Trevor Murphy.
— Dylan Strome was voted to the AHL All-Rookie Team on Wednesday. He has 22 goals and 28 assists in 47 games for the Roadrunners. Strome will likely rejoin the team for the upcoming AHL playoffs, which begin the week of Apr. 16. Strome has two goals and seven points in eight games since his NHL recall.
— In the win Tuesday, Max Domi set a career high with his 35th assist on Strome’s third-period goal. He had 34 in his rookie season and 29 last season when he missed 23 games with a broken hand. Domi has 10 points (four goals, six assists) in his past eight games.
— Goalie Antti Raanta is 9-1-0 in his past 10 games with a 1.30 goals against average and a .959 save percentage.
Coyotes at Canucks
When: 7 p.m., Thursday
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
TV: FOX Sports Arizona Plus
Radio: 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station
Records: Canucks– 30-40-10. Coyotes — 29-40-11.
Season series: Coyotes lead 2-1.
Injury report: Canucks — F Brock Boeser (back), F Reid Boucher (hand), D Christopher Tanev (knee), F Loui Eriksson (rib), F Markus Granlund (ankle), Erik Gudbranson (shoulder) and F Sven Baertschi (shoulder) are out the rest of the season.
Coyotes — F Laurent Dauphin (lower body), D Niklas Hjalmarsson (lower body), D Jason Demers (upper body) and D Jakob Chychrun (lower body) are out the rest of the season. F Christian Dvorak (lower body) is day-to-day but did not travel with the team.
Canucks scouting report: Vancouver’s four-game winning streak ended with a 5-4 shootout loss to Vegas on Tuesday. Vancouver is 5-1-1 in its past seven games after a seven-game losing streak… The Canucks are one point ahead of the Coyotes for the Western Conference cellar. … Among active players, Daniel Sedin leads the Canucks with 32 assists and 53 points. Bo Horvat has 22 goals.