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Coyotes place Jovanovski on injured reserve

NHL.com @NHL
The Phoenix Coyotes have won six straight to take over the Pacific Division lead, but they'll have a bit of a tougher time holding onto it. On Friday, the club placed defenseman Ed Jovanovski on injured reserve due to an upper-body injury.

In the final seconds of the second period of Thursday's win against the Atlanta Thrashers, Jovanovski and Thrashers rookie forward Patrice Cormier appeared to bump heads. The Arizona Republic is reporting Jovanovski will have surgery to repair a fractured orbital bone and could miss a few weeks.

"It is tough," coach Dave Tippett told the newspaper. "We certainly will miss him, but we've got some players that hopefully will step in and fill that role. Jovo has missed a little bit of time here lately (injuries, flu), so we've got some players that have been playing in that role, but he will certainly be missed."

In 47 games this season, Jovanovski has 5 goals and 14 points.

The Coyotes also activated defenseman David Schlemko off IR and assigned him to their AHL farm team in San Antonio for conditioning. He's been out since Jan. 17 with an upper-body injury.

The Coyotes begin a five-game road trip with a game in Nashville on Saturday night.
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