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Avalanche's Nichushkin re-injures surgically repaired ankle

Derek Leung / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Colorado Avalanche forward Valeri Nichushkin has no timeline to return after re-injuring the ankle he had surgically repaired in early November, head coach Jared Bednar said Wednesday, according to The Denver Gazette's Kyle Fredrickson.

Nichushkin didn't play from late October until early December following the procedure. He amassed seven goals and five assists in seven games before his absence and recorded four assists in eight games after returning.

The 27-year-old was instrumental in Colorado's Stanley Cup run last spring, posting nine tallies and six helpers in 20 contests. He parlayed that performance into an eight-year, $49-million contract with the Avalanche as a free agent in July.

Selected 10th overall by the Dallas Stars in 2013, Nichushkin broke out with Colorado last season after years of unmet expectations. He joined the Avalanche in 2019-20 after four seasons with the Stars and two campaigns in the KHL.

Colorado has dealt with a slew of injuries in 2022-23. Nathan MacKinnon has been out since early December and appears to be nearing a return, but the club is still without captain Gabriel Landeskog, defensemen Josh Manson and Bowen Byram, backup goaltender Pavel Francouz, and veteran forward Darren Helm.

The Avalanche entered Wednesday sitting fourth in the Central Division at 19-12-2.

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