Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Jake Dotchin has missed the last seven games due to an undisclosed injury.
The Tampa Bay Lightning has dealt with a fair amount of injuries this season. Thankfully, these injuries have not been as daunting as the ones they were forced to deal with last season. In any case, any time a player is missing from the lineup; it causes a disturbance in “the force.”
One player who has been hit particularly hard with injuries this season is Lightning defenseman Jake Dotchin. Dotchin got off to a pretty good start this season, but everything came to a screeching halt when he was sidelined with an undisclosed injury.
At this point, the 23-year-old defenseman has been forced to miss a total of seven games. The last time Dotchin took the ice with his teammates was on November 18 as the Lightning took on the New York Islanders. Needless to say, that was not exactly a high note to go out on.
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While things may seem a little grim at the moment, there is a light at the end of this rather long tunnel. According to Tampa Bay Lightning Beat Writer Bryan Burns, Jake Dotchin returned to practice this morning. This may not seem like an update, but there is a bit of a change; he was on the ice in a normal jersey.
Now, before anyone gets too excited, Lightning fans should probably not expect to see Dotchin on the ice tonight against the Colorado Avalanche. When asked about the possibility of Dotchin returning to the lineup, Lightning Head Coach Jon Cooper said, “he’s probably not that possible for tonight.” (via Bryan Burns)
Since joining the Lightning lineup last season, Dotchin has truly made an impact. Last season, Dotchin picked up a total of 11 assists and a plus-10 rating. These are fairly decent numbers for a defenseman who only played 35 games in his debut season.
Dotchin was on track to meet or exceed these numbers prior to falling to injury. In addition to his defensive duties, the Ontario native has picked up two goals and two assists so far this season. He is also currently in third place on the team among defensemen in Hits per Game and in fourth place in Blocked Shots per Game.
It is unknown at the point exactly when Jake Dotchin will be available to return to the Lightning lineup, but considering he made his return to practice in a normal jersey this morning, it would be easy to assume the day is coming sooner rather than later. This is definitely good news for the Tampa Bay Lightning.