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Calvert Heads Home After Injury

Avalanche forward blocked a shot in the final minutes against the Canucks

by Ron Knabenbauer @RonKnab / ColoradoAvalanche.com

VANCOUVER, British Columbia--Matt Calvert has returned to Denver after suffering a head injury in the Colorado Avalanche's game on Saturday night at the Vancouver Canucks.

"He's not going to be available for us for the next couple games, so we decided to send him home so he doesn't have to keep traveling with us after what he's went through," said Avs head coach Jared Bednar following practice on Monday morning.

Calvert was injured in the final minutes of the third period of Colorado's 5-4 overtime win against the Canucks. As he was sliding across the ice to block a shot from Elias Pettersson, the puck hit Calvert on the side of the head and he remained down on the ice as Vancouver tallied to cut its deficit to 4-3. The Canucks added another goal 1:37 later to tie game before the Avalanche won the contest 27 seconds into the OT period.

Bednar said there is no timeline on Calvert's return, but as of Monday the forward hadn't been diagnosed with a concussion.

"He started to feel a little better the day that he left," Bednar said. "With him being unable to play, might as well get him home and get him some work done so he doesn't have to travel around with the team for two games."

Andre Burakovsky took Calvert's spot on a line with Nathan MacKinnon and Joonas Donskoi during practice.

The Avs skated for 40 minutes on Monday morning at Father Bauer Arena at the Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre on the campus of the University of British Columbia, with every player that is currently with the team taking the ice.

Not every skater finished the session though as Tyson Jost only participated in a few drills before leaving the ice. He was wearing a red, non-contact jersey after missing his first game of the season on Saturday with an upper-body injury. Bednar said Jost is unlikely to play on Tuesday at the Calgary Flames but is still listed as day-to-day.

The Avalanche only has 11 healthy forwards on its roster at the moment, but Bednar said the plan is to recall a player from the American Hockey League's Colorado Eagles later in the day.

Video: Avs coach Jared Bednar discuss injuries

There does appear to be some good news on the goaltending front with Colorado's top two netminders closer to a return. Both Philipp Grubauer (lower body) and Pavel Francouz (concussion protocol) participated in the full on-ice session with fellow keepers Antoine Bibeau and Adam Werner, who were recalled from the Eagles last week.

"Based on what we saw from practice here, it's a good possibility that both guys are available tomorrow," Bednar said of Grubauer and Francouz. "We got to get through today and see how they're feeling in the morning and make some decisions on what we're exactly going to do there."

Colorado departed for Calgary following practice. Tuesday's contest will be the fourth stop on the team's five-game road trip.

PRACTICE LINE COMBINATIONS

Andre Burakovsky - Nathan MacKinnon - Joonas Donskoi
Tyson Jost* - Nazem Kadri - J.T. Compher
Matt Nieto - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - Valeri Nichushkin
Jayson Megna - Vladislav Kamenev - T.J. Tynan

Samuel Girard - Erik Johnson
Ryan Graves - Cale Makar
Nikita Zadorov - Ian Cole
Mark Barberio

Philipp Grubauer
Pavel Francouz
Antoine Bibeau
Adam Werner

* - non-contact participant

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