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Nathan MacKinnon has possible serious injury, from fight with Dumba?



Stacy Bengs/AP

This is always the time of year when the Avs seem to get ambushed by injuries. It’s happening again. Nathan MacKinnon, back to Denver on a plane this morning, upper-body injury, could be out weeks and coach Jared Bednar said it’s possible MacKinnon’s injury is related to his fight with Minnesota’s Matt Dumba on Sunday.

Well, hey, at least Artturi Lehkonen will make his Avs debut tonight. Good news there…right Avs fans?

Let’s just go ahead and say it: MacKinnon was unwise for dropping the gloves and fighting Dumba, and now he and the team will pay for it. Kurtis MacDermid was about to step in and take care of things with Dumba or anyone else on the Wild, but MacKinnon started throwing punches. Now, he’s out, and it’s always serious when the Avs fly a guy back from a road trip early. I mean, why wouldn’t MacKinnon have just come back tonight with the team otherwise? They obviously want to get this thing diagnosed as soon as possible.

I get that he’s sticking up for teammates and that’s all well and good. But MacKinnon’s hands are precious property. He needs to be smarter than that. The playoffs are about a month away. Now, we all have to hold our breath on the prognosis.

Broken hands often are 4-6-week rehabs at best. I’m not saying it’s a broken hand. I have no idea what the actual injury is. But if it is…that’s the usual rehab timeline.

The one thing I’ve been worried about with this team as the playoffs near? Injuries. And, here they come again. To the best players, too.

Nazem Kadri will center a top line tonight against the Flames, with Mikko Rantanen and Valeri Nichushkin. Newcomer Lehkonen will skate at left wing on a line with Alex Newhook and Andre Burakovsky.

The conference title, in my mind, is still wrapped up. So, the Avs can “afford” injuries when it comes to the regular season. But the playoffs? Um, maybe not. This is bad new today, no matter how you slice it.


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