The Winnipeg Jets held a team practice on Sunday morning, just one day removed from a halt in operation due to an ‘overabundance of caution’ relating to a potential COVID-19 exposure within the team.
With an upcoming week of travel and games as the visiting team, Winnipeg could not afford to waste any more time following a scheduled ‘off day’ (Friday) and a cancellation to the practice schedule (Saturday).
But on Sunday morning, it was business as usual. However, there were a few bumps and bruises along the way.
With Tucker Poolman being labelled as the likely COVID culprit, the 27-year-old defenceman did not attend the skate on Sunday, while Nikolaj Ehlers also was not present. Patrik Laine began the skate but left in the early going after suffering what appeared to be an upper-body injury. Head coach Paul Maurice indicated that Laine was unable to ‘warm up right’, so Mathieu Perreault took his place on the second line. Andrew Copp took over for Ehlers atop the team’s No. 1 line.
The line rushes on Sunday were as follows:
With Poolman expected to see an extended COVID absence as he is now considered a ‘Covid Protocol Related Absence’, and Dylan DeMelo – who will not travel with the team, as his wife just gave birth in hospital – the defence will look a little different for Winnipeg moving forward for the next three games.
The Jets will travel to Toronto on Sunday afternoon, and battle the 2-1-0 Maple Leafs at Scotiabank Arena on Monday evening. The team will then move further east to Ottawa for Tuesday and Thursday matchups against the 1-1-0 Senators, before travelling back home to Manitoba for yet another battle against Ottawa, this time at home on Saturday evening.
The Monday, Tuesday and Thursday contests will be available to view live on TSN at 6:00 PM central, while Saturday’s home game will be broadcast live on Sportsnet at 9:00 PM.