There is good news for the Winnipeg Jets as forward Mark Scheifele says he’s ready to rock next season.
The 27-year-old centre was injured just a few minutes into the Stanley Cup Qualifiers in the bubble, sustaining a leg injury thanks to a collision with Calgary’s Matthew Tkachuk. He was sidelined for nearly a month as a result, but now he’s good to go.
“I’m 100 percent, no question,” Scheifele told NHL.com Tuesday. “Skating every day. I don’t know anyone who skates more than I do. I love being on the ice. That’s my number one thing. I get on the ice as much as I can.”
Scheifele’s injury looked to be significant at one point, but in August he announced that he would not require surgery. He was off the ice for nearly a month, but preparation for the upcoming season is in full swing and it’s anticipated that he’ll be back when the NHL returns at some point in January – theoretically.
Scheifele tied Kyle Connor for the Winnipeg lead in scoring last season with 73 points in 71 games, including 29 goals and 44 assists. A year prior, the forward notched a career-high 38 goals. It’s safe to say big things are expected from Scheifele this upcoming season, especially as the Jets take the necessary steps to reach contendership status on a regular basis.
“I’m not a guy who likes to take much time off [in the offseason],” Scheifele said. “I think I was three weeks off the ice once I got home. I did a ton of rehab on it, lots of treatment, got it back to normal. So I think it was six days before I got home, so a month total.”
Scheifele harbours no ill will toward Tkachuk and carries no grudges going into the upcoming season. His focus is entirely on pushing the Jets to that next level.
That’s a good thing, as the Jets definitely have their work cut out for them. With the Patrik Laine situation continuing to evolve, at least Winnipeg can have some confidence in a 100 percent Scheifele back on the ice when the puck drops – whenever and wherever that will be.
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