Jared Bednar delivers bad, but perhaps not the worst news on Lehkonen
Mar 14, 2023, 12:08 PM
(Photo by Francois Lacasse/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Avalanche’s big win over Montreal took a sour turn on Monday night when it was announced after the game that forward Artturi Lehkonen broke his finger.
Colorado’s 8-4 victory was quickly an afterthought. Head Coach Jared Bednar said Lehkonen would fly home to Denver and undergo surgery for the break.
After practice on Tuesday in Toronto, Bednar provided another update. This one was bad, but perhaps not the worst news. Lehkonen is going to be out a chunk of time, but could return for the playoffs.
Jared Bednar post practice here in Toronto says Lehkonen will have surgery tomorrow in Denver at which point the Avs will have a better idea of things. Bednar reiterated 4-6 weeks out is what they’re thinking right now.
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) March 14, 2023
A 4-6 week timeline is anywhere between April 11 and April 25. The regular season ends on the 14th for the Avs, with the postseason slated to get going around the 17th. That means Lehkonen could be back for the start of Round 1, or sometime during that series. It all depends on how fast the finger heals.
In 62 games, including Monday night, Lehkonen scored 20 goals and dished out 29 assists. His 49 points are fourth on the Avalanche.
But it’s a big blow to a team that’s already missing captain Gabriel Landeskog, defensemen Erik Johnson and Josh Manson, forward Darren Helm and backup goalie Pavel Francouz. Helm, Johnson and Manson should return this season, while the fate of Landeskog and Francouz remains unclear.
Regardless, the Avs have battled an unreal amount of injuries, so this is nothing new. Let’s hope they can keep things afloat until the playoffs, and then get everyone back, including Lehkonen.