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Johnson, Graves return; Calvert (UBI) is sidelined

January 26, 2021, 3:21 PM ET [1 Comments]
Rick Sadowski
Colorado Avalanche Blogger •Avalanche Insider • RSSArchiveCONTACT
Defensemen Erik Johnson and Ryan Graves will return to the lineup and forward Matt Calvert will be out because of an upper-body injury when the Avalanche (3-3-0) play San Jose (3-3-0) at Ball Arena on Tuesday.

Here are the GAME NOTES.

It will be Johnson’s second game of the season and his first on home ice since March 11 when the Avalanche played the New York Rangers in what turned out to be the final game of the 2019-20 regular season, after which the NHL season was put on pause because of the COVD-19 pandemic.

Johnson missed training camp after testing positive of the virus and made his season debut Jan. 19 in the Avalanche’s 3-2 win in Los Angeles.

“I played in L.A. and then I had some more skates and then I felt good to get back into the swing of things,” Johnson said after the morning skate. “To come back here will be fun. It’s been 10 months, so it’ll be good to get back here.

“I’m feeling good, everything feels right to be back out there. Conditioning’s back, lungs are back, so on that note everything’s good.”

Johnson is expected to be paired with Graves, who didn’t play Sunday in the 3-1 loss in Anaheim.

Defenseman Greg Pateryn cleared waivers and will be scratched. Goalie Pavel Francouz remains out with a lower-body injury; coach Jared Bednar said there was nothing to report on him.

Kiefer Sherwood, who was signed as a free agent on Oct. 9, will make his Avalanche debut, replacing Calvert on the fourth line.

The 6-foot, 194-pound Sherwood, 25, is from Columbus, Ohio, and played three seasons at Miami of Ohio. He played parts of two seasons with Anaheim, collecting 13 points (six goals, seven assists) in 60 games. He had one assist in 10 games with the Ducks last year, posting 23 points (16 goals, seven assists) in 37 games with the San Diego Gulls of the American Hockey League.

Former Avalanche forward Matt Nieto, who returned to the Sharks as a free agent after playing four seasons in Colorado, will be on the fourth line with Marcus Sorensen and Patrick Marleau.

"It's been nice to be back," said Nieto, who has three points (two goals, one assist) in six games. "We had practice at Ball Arena yesterday. It’s a little bit weird being on the other side and I'm sure tonight will be even more weird, but I think it'll be fun. Just the memories from Colorado, the friendships I was able to make the last four years … had some amazing teammates and some fun playoff runs."

The Avalanche lineup:

Gabriel Landeskog -- Nathan MacKinnon -- Mikko Rantanen
Brandon Saad -- Nazem Kadri -- Andre Burakovsky
Valeri Nichushkin -- J.T. Compher -- Joonas Donskoi
Tyson Jost -- Pierre-Edouard Bellemare -- Kiefer Sherwood

Devon Toews -- Cale Makar
Bowen Byram -- Samuel Girard
Ryan Graves -- Erik Johnson

Philipp Grubauer
Hunter Miska

Injuries: Matt Calvert (upper body), Pavel Francouz (lower body)

Scratched: Greg Pateryn

Taxi squad: Martin Kaut, Conor Timmins, Adam Werner

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