Gabe Landeskog skates again for the second time in a week today. This is a very encouraging sign that his rehabilitation is going well after his knee surgery. As I reported earlier last week, Landeskog hit the ice for the first time this season the other day. It was for only ten minutes, and he was being cautious on his right leg. Today he was out for about 25 minutes and being a bit more aggressive on the leg.
Today was a day off for the team after a loss to the Philadelphia Flyers. Nathan MacKinnon was forced to leave the game early with an upper-body injury. We will not get any updates officially on him until tomorrow. With MacKinnon out, the Avalanche now have 11 players out with injuries. As our exclusive video shows, Val Nichushkin does not look too far off from a return, as he was skating with Darren Helm.
On his Altitude radio show this morning, in fact, Jared Bednar said Nichushkin and Helm are probably the closest to returning to the lineup – with the exception of guys who are listed as “day-to-day” right now – guys such as Artturi Lehkonen.
Landeskog came out on the ice at about 10:45 this morning and stayed out until about 11:10. He tried to skate softly and took some shots, but most important, he took a couple of sharp turns on his right side. Last week when he was on the on the ice, he did not try anything drastic. Landeskog was only trying pushoffs last week. So today, with Landeskog taking shots and turns, this was significant progress. He is still not expected to be back with the team until late January, but we all could use something to get excited about, right?
We also have some video of Nuke and Helmer: