We have finally received an update on Artturi Lehkonen, and it is not encouraging. During the game against the Seattle Kraken, Jamie Oleksiak pushed Lehkonen pushed into the boards by. He struggled to stand and required help from the trainer and Nathan MacKinnon to leave the ice while wiping blood from his face.
It will sideline Lehkonen for weeks, according to Coach Bednar. Is it a neck injury? After watching the video once again, I deduced it could be a pinched nerve or a neck injury.
Really scary play here. Lehkonen goes head-first into the boards after contact with Oleksiak. Just the smallest shove by Oleksiak threw him off balance. No penalty on the play.
Thankfully, Lehkonen was able to skate off, but he was moving very slowly and went down the tunnel. pic.twitter.com/uvtpRw5S7F
— Sound Of Hockey (@sound_hockey) November 10, 2023
Who will the Colorado Avalanche call up from the Colorado Eagles to replace Lehkonen on the roster? There are several options. Ondrej Pavel has a similar playing style to Lehkonen and could play on the penalty kill. If Matthew Stienburg will switch wings, he would bring a heavy playing style to the Avalanche that they so desperately need right now. Oskar Olausson is the ideal choice for the Avalanche’s need for speed and scoring. And one assist in the Eagles’ last three games.
It doesn’t matter who the Avalanche pulls up. Lehkonen’s absence will create a significant gap between the first and second lines. He brings speed and a forecheck that they will sorely miss. His absence on the power play as the wheelman will take some adjustments as usually sets MacKinnon up for slap shots on one side. He missed a stretch last year, and the Avalanche made adjustments then, so this isn’t new. This will not be unfamiliar territory.