Dennis Schneidler-USA TODAY Sports

Mark Scheifele will return to the Winnipeg Jets' lineup tonight for the first time in 2018, more than six weeks since his last NHL game. During that time, the Jets have continued to win and find themselves tied with the Nashville Predators for first place in the Central Division with 73 points.

Scheifele’s return will once again make the Jets' forward group one of the most fearsome in the league, now armed with the added knowledge that Blake Wheeler can handle center responsibilities and still perform at an elite level. Winnipeg will take on St. Louis in a key divisional matchup that could bring the two teams within two points of each other once again.

  • Troy Brouwer is week-to-week in Calgary after suffering a facial fracture last night but isn’t expected to be out long-term. Brouwer actually returned to the game but will have to take a seat for at least a little while, opening another opportunity for some of the young Flames forwards. Brouwer was playing better of late but still has just 15 points on the season in the second year of his $18MM contract.
  • The New York Islanders are starved for defensive help, and they’ll get some tonight as the team activated Johnny Boychuk off injured reserve. Boychuk hasn’t played since Dec. 27 but is expected to be back in the lineup against the Detroit Red Wings. If the Islanders think they can truly reach and then compete in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, they’ll need to greatly improve their defensive play — Boychuk is a good first step.
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This article first appeared on Pro Hockey Rumors and was syndicated with permission.

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