The injury bug was bound to bite at some time, but the Colorado Avalanche hoped to keep their thin defensive corps intact.
Erik Johnson, the Avs’ top defenseman, was helped off the ice in Wednesday’s practice after taking a shot off his foot. Johnson left the building to get further evaluation from the team doctor.
With his status still unknown, there’s a chance he could miss Friday’s home tilt with the visiting Carolina Hurricanes. The Avalanche have been much better defensively as a group this season, part of that helped on by the play of goaltenders Jean-Sebastien Giguere and Semyon Varlamov.
Losing a defenseman the caliber of Erik Johnson from this thin group will certainly hurt and the Avalanche will hope that it isn’t serious. It’ll be interesting to see who takes Johnson’s place on the second power-play unit should he miss time. As it stands, he’d be co-quarterbacking the unit with P.A. Parenteau while Paul Stastny, Gabriel Landeskog and Nathan MacKinnon manned the forward units. Could Tyson Barrie be given another chance?
Stay tuned; Mile High Sticking will keep you up to date with Johnson’s status.
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