Jones (knee) could return sooner than expected since he's looked good skating for three straight days, Aaron Portzline of The Athletic reports, relaying information from 97.1 The Fan. Jones can't return soon enough for the countless fantasy owners who drafted him in the early rounds, only to see the mobile rearguard sustain a second-degree MCL sprain late in training camp. Columbus' fourth overall pick from the 2013 draft fashioned career highs in every widely-adopted fantasy category last season, including 41 assists, 124 blocked shots and 249 shots on goal.
Jones (knee) was placed on injured reserve by the Blue Jackets on Monday. Considering Jones won't be available until early November, the move to designate him for injured reserve shouldn't come as a surprise. With the Texas native sidelined, Adam Clendening and Dean Kukan could see some action during the opening month of the season, but will likely be shipped to the minors once Jones is given the green light to return to action.
Jones will miss 4-6 weeks due to a second-degree MCL sprain. The news will effectively keep Jones out of the lineup for at least the first month of the season -- a stretch of 11 games that could go longer. While the defenseman will be hard-pressed to repeat his career numbers from last year (57 points), he should still be able to push for the 40-point threshold once given the green light to return. Dean Kukan and Gabriel Carlsson could both see increased workloads in Jones' stead.
Coach John Tortorella relayed Wednesday that Jones (lower body) will likely miss awhile, Aaron Portzline of The Athletic reports. The team hasn't officially released word on Jones' status at this point, but coach Tortorella has little reason to lie about it. If that's indeed the case, Jones may be in line to miss the start of the regular season. A clearer picture of the timetable faced by the blueliner is expected to surface after he undergoes further testing.
Jones suffered a lower-body injury during Tuesday's preseason game against the Sabres and won't return, Tom Gulitti of NHL.com reports. There's no indication of what caused Jones' injury, and updates should be available after the game. The Blue Jackets will be holding their breath until then since the 23-year-old racked up a career-high 57 points last season while firing 249 shots on goal. With their top forward Artemi Panarin and starting goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky on the trading block, Columbus needs its top defender to stay healthy.
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