What Connor Bedard and Nick Foligno's Injuries Mean for the Rest of Chicago Blackhawks Season

Rookie sensation Connor Bedard and veteran Nick Folingo to injured list, which brings current IR total to 9
Chicago Blackhawks v New Jersey Devils
Chicago Blackhawks v New Jersey Devils / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

I think we can all agree that injuries are easily the worst part of sports. The Blackhawks have been no stranger to that this season.

During Friday's 4-2 loss in a physical, scrappy game against the New Jersey Devils, the Hawks lost both Connor Bedard and Nick Foligno due to injury. Foligno walked away with a fractured finger while Bedard suffered a fractured jaw.

These injuries are by no means normal, but they have a much larger impact than any common injury you may see across the league. Bedard and Foligno are the eighth and ninth players listed on the Blackhawks injured reserve list.

Chicago has been no stranger to the injury bug this year as the injury list includes many players such as Taylor Hall, Seth Jones, Andreas Athanasiou, Taylor Raddysh, Tyler Johnson, Anthony Beauvillier, and now Foligno and Bedard.

Seth Jones is due to "start skating again this weekend" according to Ben Pope of the Chicago Sun-Times. Getting a veteran presence back on the ice will be key to these young players' development. Outside of Jones, there isn't much of a timetable table as to when these guys can get back out there.

Bedard has been the Hawk's best player so far this year, so let's dive a little deeper into what this injury means for him and the rest of the season for us fans.

Bedard has been the driving force behind Chicago's offense this year. He has accounted for 15 of our 90 goals and 33 points in 39 games as an 18-year-old rookie. Most fractured jaws can heal within a 4-8 week period. We don't know the full extent of the fracture, but that is a rough estimate.

That would take the Blackhawks' leading point scorer out of the lineup for at least the next month, but possibly closer to two months.

Despite this devastating injury, this can allow some of the younger talent on the roster to step into bigger roles and perhaps find some production. Players such as Philipp Kurashev and Lukas Reichel can earn some more ice time and gain more experience.

I am not too worried about Bedard not getting to "develop" more as a player. We have all seen what he can do. We see flashes of brilliance in almost every single game he plays in.

I think it would be best for him to take as much time as possible to fully heal and come back only when he is 100% better. If the 4-8 week timeline is correct, he will be back in time for the last month of the season.

Let's be honest with ourselves, the Hawks weren't contending for a playoff spot anyway. There are too many holes and inconsistencies on the roster to begin with. There is still work to be done with this group, but some of that is seeing what we can work with while Bedard is out.

The main silver lining of all these injuries is that while we still develop the talent we currently have, we are also improving our first-round draft pick this year. With prospects such as Celebrini, Lindstrom, and Dickinson, it's a fine time to have a top pick in the draft.

If the Blackhawks want to contend for a Stanley Cup any time soon, we have to build up the entire roster to do that. I think this injury will humble us as a fanbase in a way. Sure we won't have the sick snapshots or the occasional Michigan goal from Bedard, but this can now be a learning opportunity for the coaching staff and front office to see who we can keep on this team to support Bedard in the coming decade.

This team has a bright future, so let's not focus too much on the negative with these injuries.