The Columbus Blue Jackets have provided a defenseman Nick Blankenburgcenter Sean Kuraly and right wing Jakob Woracek on Injured Reserve, General Manager and Deputy Governor Jarmo Kekalainen announced today. Voracek was transferred to the injured reserve retroactively to November 4, while Kuraly’s appointment is retroactive to November 5. The Blue Jackets added defenders Gavin BayreutherMarcus Bjork and David Jiricek drafted to the emergency recall roster of the Cleveland Monsters, the club’s American Hockey League affiliate. Also defender Zach Werensky suffered a severed shoulder and torn labrum in Thursday’s 5-2 win over Philadelphia and is expected to miss the rest of the regular season.
Blankenburg, 24, is expected to miss six to eight weeks with a broken ankle and a high ankle sprain on Thursday. He has two goals and one assist for three points with four penalties in seven games with the Blue Jackets this season. The 5-9, 177-pound Washington, Michigan native has totaled 3-3-6 and six PIM in 14 contests with the Blue Jackets since making his NHL debut at the end of the 2021-22 season.
Kuraly, 29, suffered an upper body injury on Nov. 5 against Colorado and is considered to be day-to-day. He’s gone 2-2-4 with two PIMs in 12 games with the Blue Jackets this season. The 6-2, 213-pound center has averaged 16-18-34 and 63 PIM in 89 contests with Columbus since signing as a free agent on July 28, 2021. Born in Niagara Falls, New York, he has recorded 40-62-102 and 197 PIM in 359 career games with the Blue Jackets and the Boston Bruins since his 2016-17 NHL debut.
Voracek, 33, is out indefinitely due to an upper-body injury sustained in Colorado on Nov. 4. The Czech native from Kladno has amassed 1-5-6 in 11 games with Columbus in 2022-23. He has a total of 223-583-806 and 525 PIM in 1,058 NHL career games with the Blue Jackets and Philadelphia Flyers since being drafted seventh overall by Columbus in the 2007 NHL Draft. The 6-2, 216-pound winger has 46-156-202 and 140 PIM in 331 career games across two stints with Columbus.
Bayreuther, 28, ended his season debut against Boston on Oct. 28 with a hit and two blocked shots at 3:09 p.m. Ice Time. The 6-1, 196-pound blueliner has recorded 3-11-14 and 39 PIM in 72 career games with the Blue Jackets and Dallas Stars since his 2018-19 NHL debut. He has accumulated 1-8-9 and 29 PIM in 53 appearances with Columbus since signing as a free agent on October 9, 2020. The Canaan, New Hampshire native has added 25-85-110 and 120 PIM in 221 career AHL games since his pro debut in 2016-17 and has 0-4-4 and two PIM in four games with Cleveland in 2022- 23
The 24-year-old Bjork, who signed a one-year contract with the Blue Jackets on May 24, 2022, leads the Monsters blueliners in goals and points (tie) with 2-3-5 and four PIM in 11 competitions this season on. He made his North American pro debut on October 14 against Syracuse, 1-1-2. A native of Umea, Sweden, the 6-4, 211-pound defenseman posted 17-47-64 and 98 PIM in 204 career games with Malmo, Orebro and Brynas IF in the Swedish Hockey League from 2018-22, including 3-12 – 15 in 52 appearances in 2021-22.
Jiricek has four shots, five hits and four blocks in two games with the Blue Jackets this season. He became the second youngest defenseman to make his NHL debut in franchise history (Rostislav Klesla; 18 years, 200 days on October 7, 2000 vs. Chicago) when he faced Boston on October 28 at age 18 (334). -days. The 6-4, 199-pound Klatovy, Czech Republic native has added 0-5-5 with two PIM in six games with the Monsters this season. He was selected sixth overall by the Blue Jackets in the first round of the 2022 NHL Draft.
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