For the Vancouver Canucks, already working with one of the most inexperienced bluelines in the NHL, the news that Sami Salo will sidelined for at least a week (knee sprain) is another tough break for a team that's had 11 of its first 15 games on the road.
The Canucks recalled Swedish rookie Alex Edler yesterday to replace Salo in the line-up, which means for tonight's game in Colorado, Vancouver's only defencemen with more than 104 games NHL experience will be Mattias Ohlund and Rory Fitzpatrick.
Canucks defencemen by NHL experience Mattias Ohlund, 572 games Rory Fitzpatrick, 224 games Lukas Krajicek, 104 games Kevin Bieksa, 53 games Luc Bourdon, 7 games Alex Edler, 0 games
While sophomores Krajicek and Bieksa have impressed so far and been able to take on sizable minutes, Bourdon has struggled to adapt in his first NHL season and Canucks coach Alain Vigneault has given the rookie just 8:41 ice time per game. Prior to Salo's injury, there had been talk of sending Bourdon back to junior - something that seems less likely given the team's injury woes.
In addition to Salo, the Canucks are already without Willie Mitchell (concussion) and Yannick Tremblay (ankle sprain) on the blueline.