Enstrom, Stuart & Bogosian all participating in practice
Ryan Dittrick (@ryandittrick)
/ Winnipeg Jets
WINNIPEG – Baby blue never looked so good! Injured defencemen Mark Stuart and Toby Enstrom were both on the ice today donning the infamous non-contact insignia.
In other words, great news for the Jets and their ailing defence corps.
Stuart (lower body) has been sidelined since mid-December, while Enstrom (lower body) has been out even longer, with his last appearance coming on Nov. 23 vs. St. Louis.
“It was fun being out there with the guys. It’s good for the mind and the body,” Stuart said.
“I’m not really sure [when I’ll return to the lineup]. I need to work my way back in. I need to prove to the trainers and the coaches that I’m ready to play and that started today with moving the puck around and getting a good skate in.
“The progression has been good. I’m really happy with how everything’s gone. I think I’m a little bit further ahead than I thought I’d be at this point, for sure.”
“You always want to be out there and around the guys, so today is a happy day,” Enstrom added. “It’s been hard standing on the sidelines, but the team has been playing amazing. It makes it a little easier being out. You always miss it, but the team is winning and that makes me happy.
“I feel good. This is only my second or third time skating, but I’m looking forward to (returning).”
The Jets have gone 10-4-4 without Enstrom and 4-3-1 without Stuart, which is a credit to the whole having stepped up and performed exceptionally well in their absence.
But for the first time all season, it seems, the injured bodies are inching their way back.
Zach Bogosian, who last played on Dec. 3 after suffering a lower-body injury against the Edmonton Oilers, was back on the ice again today and was paired with veteran Jay Harrison on the back end.
“Those guys are a huge part of our team and they’ll give us a huge boost when they get back in the lineup,” Jets forward Mark Scheifele said.
“I know they’re itching to get back and the team’s itching for them to get back as well.”