The 2019-20 NHL season started out pretty rough for the Winnipeg Jets, who announced before their opener that defenseman Dustin Byfuglien was granted a leave of absence to ponder his NHL future.
Byfuglien is said to be weighing his options at the moment and remains without a timetable for a decision. The veteran player is believed to “have lost his love for the game.”
The Jets were also bit by the injuries bug and lost a few players, mostly blue liners, to injuries. On Wednesday, Winnipeg stunned everyone in the league when the Jets went ahead and claimed defenseman Luca Sbisa off waivers from the Anaheim Ducks.
The Ducks put Sbisa on waivers after signing him to a one-year deal on Tuesday. He had previously spent training camp on a PTO with the New York Islanders.
According to team insider Mike McIntyre, this move appears to reveal that the Jets need more help that we could ever have thought on the back end. The insider believes this means Byfuglien might not be returning as soon as fans had hope.
Last week, NHL insider Darren Dreger reported that there was a growing sense that Big Buff would be returning to Winnipeg. However, the Jets’ actions on Wednesday seem to say otherwise.
The Jets are currently without defenseman Nathan Beaulieu as well, he who is on injured reserve.