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Projected Lineup: Avalanche vs. Flyers

Nazem Kadri set to return after missing three games with a lower-body injury

by Ron Knabenbauer @RonKnab /

Nazem Kadri will be back in the Colorado Avalanche lineup this evening when the club takes on the Philadelphia Flyers at Pepsi Center.

The Avs forward has missed the past three games with a lower-body injury after he tweaked a previous ailment during last Wednesday's contest at the Toronto Maple Leafs. Kadri skated in a non-contact jersey at Monday's morning skate and was a full participant in Tuesday's practice and today's optional morning skate.

Colorado head coach Jared Bednar did not say which line Kadri was going to center for the outing against the Flyers, stating he was still deciding on a few things. One lineup note that Bednar did mention was that Vladislav Kamenev will come out and be a healthy scratch.

Kadri has 10 goals and 10 assists and has won a team-high 57 percent of his faceoffs in 27 games this season, his first with the Avalanche.

The addition of Kadri gives the Avs a mostly healthy roster up front for the first time in nearly two months. Colin Wilson (lower body) is the only forward out with an injury, but he is out long term after deciding to have surgery. The club enters tonight's contest with 95 man-games lost this year.

Goaltender Pavel Francouz is expected to make his second consecutive start in net and third in the last four games, as the team recalled Adam Werner from the American Hockey League's Colorado Eagles after morning skate to be the backup. Francouz has a 5-0-1 record, 2.36 goals-against average and .926 save percentage in his last eight appearances.

Philipp Grubauer has been dealing with a lower-body injury after getting hurt in the first period of Saturday's contest at the Boston Bruins. Grubauer has participated in the Avs' practices in each of the last three days, including today's pregame skate.

Injured rookie defenseman Cale Makar (upper body) skated for the second straight day, but he won't play versus the Flyers and is doubtful for Friday's home game against the New Jersey Devils. Bednar said Makar is progressing but is only skating and stickhandling at this time and has yet to begin shooting.

Below is the Avalanche's projected lineup for the game against the Flyers based on the forward combinations and defensive pairings from Tuesday's practice. The alignment is subject to change.

92 Gabriel Landeskog - 29 Nathan MacKinnon - 96 Mikko Rantanen
95 Andre Burakovsky - 91 Nazem Kadri - 72 Joonas Donskoi
11 Matt Calvert - 41 Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - 13 Valeri Nichushkin
83 Matt Nieto - 17 Tyson Jost - 37 J.T. Compher

16 Nikita Zadorov - 49 Samuel Girard
27 Ryan Graves - 28 Ian Cole
48 Calle Rosen - 44 Mark Barberio

39 Pavel Francouz
31 Adam Werner

Healthy Scratch: Vladislav Kamenev
Injuries: Philipp Grubauer (lower body), Erik Johnson (lower body), Cale Makar (upper body), Colin Wilson (lower body)

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