In a Wednesday morning press release, the Blackhawks announced that rookie defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk will be out for 3-4 months with a fractured left patella. van Riemsdyk will undergo surgery to repair the broken knee tomorrow, November 20th.
van Riemsdyk suffered the injury after taking a puck to knee while blocking a shot in the Blackhawks 6-2 win over the Dallas Stars on Sunday night. He missed the remainder of the game.
It was initially believed that van Riemsdyk would miss 2-3 months with the injury, so while the projected rehab time isn't a shock, the announcement that it could take an extra month for him to return certainly comes as a disappointment, especially given his strong start to the season.
After signing with the 'Hawks as a free agent back in March, the 23-year old defenseman had been a bit of a revelation early in the season for the Blackhawks. Through the first 18 games, he had just one point, but has played well in all facets of the game. He has been in the lineup for every game thus far, and even has played on the top pair with Duncan Keith in a few games.
The Blackhawks recalled defenseman Adam Clendening from Rockford on Tuesday to fill van Riemsdyk's spot. It is expected that Clendening, Michal Rozsival, and David Rundblad will rotate in and out of the lineup to form the third defensive pair for the Blackhawks.
The 'Hawks next game is this Thursday, as they will visit the Calgary Flames in the first game of their Circus Trip.
Adam Hess is the editor and publisher of Feathers in the Hat, and a contributor to Second City Hockey. You can follow him on Twitter at @FeathersInDaHat.
(Statistics via NHL.com)