Hughes placed on injured reserve by Devils with dislocated left shoulder


NEWARK, N.J. — Jack Hughes was placed on injured reserve by the New Jersey Devils on Thursday with a dislocated left shoulder and will be reevaluated in one week.

The 20-year-old center had an MRI that revealed no further damage. He will not require surgery and has begun physical therapy.

The Devils (2-0-0) host the Washington Capitals (2-0-1) on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; MSG+, NBCSWA, ESPN+, NHL LIVE).

Hughes did not return to a 4-2 win against the Seattle Kraken at Prudential Center on Tuesday after being hit into the boards. He was trying to control the puck in the left-wing corner before he was checked off his skates by Kraken defenseman Jeremy Lauzon with 1:06 left in the first period and was down on the ice for a several seconds before getting up and skating off.

“It’s not fun,” Devils captain Nico Hischier said. “You don’t want to see anybody get hurt. I’m sure he’ll recover and come back strong.

“He’s always a big part of our group, but at the end of the day, we just have to focus on whoever’s in the lineup and play for those guys who are not in the lineup. So we’ll try [our] best tonight.”

Michael McLeod will replace Hughes on the second line with Yegor Sharangovich and Janne Kuokkanen.

“I’ve played with both of them at some point,” McLeod said. “I know how they play. They’re both offensive guys. I think if I play hard and win pucks for them, go to the net and try to make things happen down there for them, I think we’ll work well.

“It’s exciting (to have the opportunity). It’ll be a big step for me.”

Hughes had an assist on a goal by Damon Severson 6:42 into the first period Tuesday, and scored two goals, including in overtime, for a 4-3 win against the Chicago Blackhawks in New Jersey’s season opener Oct. 15.

The No. 1 pick in the 2019 NHL Draft is in the final season of his entry-level contract and can be a restricted free agent. He’s scored 55 points (20 goals, 35 assists) in 119 games.Goalie Jonathan Bernier is out with a lower-body injury. Scott Wedgewood will start against the Capitals and Nico Daws was recalled from Utica of the American Hockey League. Mackenzie Blackwood has yet to play this season while recovering from offseason heel surgery.

Frederik Gauthier is expected to make his Devils debut on the fourth line, the center’s first NHL regular-season game since he played for the Arizona Coyotes in a 3-2 win at the Colorado Avalanche on March 8. He signed a one-year, two-way contract Oct. 8.

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