did not participate in practice Monday with the New Jersey Devils
after taking a shot just above his left ankle Saturday against the Buffalo Sabres
Devils coach Jacques Lemaire
said he expects Kovalchuk to practice Tuesday and be able to play Wednesday night against the New York Islanders
, who is close to returning to the lineup after missing four months due to knee surgery, moved into Kovalchuk's spot on a line with Nick Palmieri
and Travis Zajac
. Lemaire his status for Wednesday's game will be decided after Tuesday's practice.
The Devils haven't scored since the first period against the Boston Bruins
on Tuesday; their goal-less drought is at 173:55, a team record.
Kovalchuk has a team-high 27 goals and is second with 52 points in 74 games. The Devils enter the week 12 points behind the Buffalo Sabres
for eighth place in the East. They don't play again until Wednesday against the New York Islanders