MONTREAL--The Colorado Avalanche will have two of its forward return to the lineup this evening when the Avs take on the Montreal Candiens at Bell Centre.
Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog will make his return after missing the past 16 games with a lower-body injury while Andre Burakovksy will also be back in game action after he has missed three outings with an upper-body injury.
The two Swedes will be a line together with J.T. Compher while the trio of Joonas Donskoi, Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen will stay together. The grouping of Matt Calvert, Pierre-Edouard Bellemare and Valeri Nichushkin will also remain intact while Matt Nieto will be with Tyson Jost and T.J. Tynan.
With both Landeskog and Burakovksy getting back into the lineup, two other forwards will be out. Nazem Kadri will miss the game with a lower-body injury that he suffered in Colorado's 3-1 win at the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday. Logan O'Connor will also be out as he was reassigned to the American Hockey League's Colorado Eagles earlier on Thursday after scoring a goal in seven outings this campaign with the Avalanche.
Pavel Francouz is expected to get the start in net after Philipp Grubauer was between the pipes versus the Maple Leafs. He is 5-2-0 with a 2.48 goals-against average and .924 save percentage in nine appearances this season.
There will be one more change as Mark Barberio will play in his hometown. He has skated in seven contests this season and will likely be on a pairing with Ian Cole.
Below is the Avalanche's projected lineup. The forward combinations and defensive pairings are subject to change.
96 Mikko Rantanen - 29 Nathan MacKinnon - 72 Joonas Donskoi
92 Gabriel Landeskog - 37 J.T. Compher - 95 Andre Burakovsky
11 Matt Calvert - 41 Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - 13 Valeri Nichushkin
83 Matt Nieto - 17 Tyson Jost - 36 T.J. Tynan
27 Ryan Graves - 8 Cale Makar
16 Nikita Zadorov - 49 Samuel Girard
44 Mark Barberio - 28 Ian Cole
39 Pavel Francouz
31 Philipp Grubauer
Scratch: Calle Rosen
Injury Report: Erik Johnson (lower body), Nazem Kadri (lower body), Vladislav Kamenev (sick), Colin Wilson (lower body)