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Avalanche Morning Skate Notebook: Girard Plays Tonight



Sam Girard Avalanche

After a day of rest the Colorado Avalanche are back at it tonight with a preseason game against the Minnesota Wild at Ball Arena. The Avalanche will get a key player back as well. Per Coach Jared Bednar, Samuel Girard will be back in the fold after breaking his sternum in Game 3 against St. Louis. Bednar stated: “I wouldn’t play Sam if he wasn’t ready.”

Mikko Rantanen made his way onto the on the ice in a regular sweater after taking two days of maintenance. The biggest news of the skate, though, had to be that Val Nichushkin skated with the first group in a regular sweater. Coach Bednar said that Nichushkin “is still not full-contact and we have made some adjustments to his skate to make him feel comfortable.” There is still no change on Gabriel Landeskog.

He is out until probably later in October, at least, with a lower-body injury.

Darren Helm’s status has not changed and he continues to skate on his own in a non contact sweater.

As in terms of when the fans can expect to see Nathan Mackinnon and Mikko Rantanan on the ice in preseason action, Coach Bednar said “the last two games, I want to get everyone to get two preseason games at least this year.”

It was not much of an eventful morning on-ice session, with the game against the Minnesota Wild tonight. The Avalanche covered some zone entry drills and spent a lot of time on the power play and penalty kill.

Here are those power-play units:

The lines were a little jumbled with no one wearing a fourth-line sweater, so these are the players as they were at the skate this morning:

Blue: Hudon, Sedlak, Newhook, Kaut.

Burgundy: Foudy, Bowers, Maltsev. Olausson.

White: Nichushkin, Burke, Meyers, Ranta, Blidh.

I believe that the lines may shape out to look a little like this:










The game tonight will be at Ball Arena with a 7 p.m. start time. This is the last preseason game that will be televised on Altitude, but all the remaining  games will be broadcast on the radio. So, soak this game in fans. This will be the last game you can watch until October 12th, on opening night against the Chicago Blackhawks.

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