The Arizona Coyotes announced yesterday that forward Nick Schmaltz has been placed on injured reserve, in what is a sorry blow to the team.
Since arriving in the desert, the first-round (20th overall) selection in the 2014 draft has registered 14 points (five goals, nine assists) in just 17 appearances.
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With a 49.7% Corsi rating while starting in the offensive zone 65.5% of the time, Schmaltz has looked to be a decent pickup for the Coyotes and has become a regular contributor for the team – averaging 18:01 while out on the ice.
Schmaltz has now been listed week-to-week with a lower-body injury and the 22-year-old could miss a significant amount of time – another stumbling block for a team that has suffered a number of disappointing injuries this season.
Defencemen Jason Demers, Alex Goligoski and Jakob Chychrun, as well as goaltender Antti Raanta and forwards Michael Grabner, Christian Dvorak and Brad Richardson, have all missed various times this season due to various injuries or illnesses.
This has done much to hamper the team’s progress from the latter end of last season, with the Coyotes currently sporting a 17-21-2 record so far this season.
With so many key players still currently out, such as Demers, Dvorak, Raanta and now Schmaltz, Rick Tocchet has never had a fully healthy team at his disposal this season.
Having every player available could have had a significant impact on the team’s results and consistency.
Losing Schmaltz will be a big blow for the team, with the Wisconsin native providing them with regular offensive production that the team is desperate to keep as the season wears on.
What do you think of the Coyotes’ injury woes this season? Would the team be in a significantly better position if they had all of their players available? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!