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Byfuglien will finish season despite bone bruise

Apr 4, 2012, 8:45 AM EDT

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Dustin Byfuglien Getty

Dustin Byfuglien is injured and his team has been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, but he’s going to continue to play anyways. Jets coach Claude Noel made that announcement Tuesday after considering resting Byfuglien due to a bone bruise.

“He still has the same issue, and he’ll have it the rest of the year,” Jets coach Claude Noel. “It’s something we deal with.”

After serving as a forward with Chicago, Byfuglien started the 2010-11 season as a blueliner with the Atlanta Thrashers. He established himself as one of the top offensive defensemen in the league with 53 points in 81 games. However, he had to prove himself all over again this season after going cold in the second half of 2010-11 and reportedly weighing 286 lbs over the summer.

Byfuglien responded to his critics by recording 50 points in 64 games this season. If nothing else, he’s better at directly contributing to goals than almost any other defensemen in the league.

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