DENVER — Colorado’s Andre Burakovsky will not travel with the team to Tampa Sunday after suffering an injury in the Avalanche’s 7-0 win over the Lightning in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals on Saturday.
Coach Jared Bednar said Burakovsky is still under consideration and will join the Avalanche in Tampa on Monday. Its availability for Game 3 remains unknown.
Burakovsky left Saturday’s tilt at the beginning of the second period after Viktor Hedman’s hand shot. It’s the second injury Burakovsky has suffered in the postseason after he was forced to miss two games in the Western Conference Finals against Edmonton with a leg injury. Burakovsky said that last week he only recently felt almost recovered from this problem, but still spends regular preventive days from training and morning skates.
The Avalanche are already shorthanded in their top six as Nazem Qadri has not been out of the game since his thumb surgery. He last played in Game 3 of the Conference Finals and resumed stick-skating last week. Bednar said Sunday that Kadri will travel with the team to Tampa, but is still considered to be a daily routine.
“We hope to see him someday,” Bednar said. “Not sure about game 3 or game 4. [though].”
Burakovsky showed his best hockey in the playoffs since replacing Kadri in the Avalanche second line. The big winger scored the Colorado’s game-winning overtime goal in Game 1 and made the most of limited playing time in Game 2, scoring a key pass on a power-play goal by Valery Nichushkin and scoring another himself. Burakovsky now has three goals and eight points in 12 playoff games.
Bednar juggled his lanes again without Burakovsky in the second game, moving Arturi Lehkonen into the second group with Mikko Rantanen and JT Comper.
Colorado will wait and see if Burakovsky can play in Game 3 on Monday. The Avalanche brought back Andrew Cogliano (finger) on Saturday to bolster their attacking depth. If Burakovsky is unavailable, it is likely that Nicolas Aube-Kubel will return to the lineup after he suffered a huge loss in the second game.