Colorado Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic announced today that team captain, Nathan MacKinnon, has tested positive for Covid-19. The positive test prevents MacKinnon from playing in tomorrow’s season opener, and possibly Saturday night’s game as well.
Let me correct this: COL GM Joe Sakic announces that Nathan MacKinnon tested positive for COVID. He is asymptomatic, will miss Wednesday’s game — Saturday is not yet determined
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) October 12, 2021
Nathan MacKinnon To Miss Debut with Asymptomatic Covid Case
Covid chaos has already played a big part in the NHL, with some players opting out of the vaccination, long Covid symptoms manifesting in others and a breakout within the league’s newest team. That chaos has now crept into the Avalanche’s ranks with MacKinnon’s recent positive test.
This is an early test for a team and player who have massive expectations heading into the year. MacKinnon is coming off of a spectacular 65 point campaign, where he finished third in Hart Trophy voting as one of the league’s very best players. He also led the Colorado Avalanche to a President’s Trophy win, their first since the 2000-01 Stanley Cup-winning campaign.
Last season, the team looked poised for a trip to the Stanley Cup Finals before losing to the Vegas Golden Knights in the second round of the playoffs.
What This Means Going Forward
The good news is that MacKinnon is vaccinated and his case is currently asymptomatic. This should prevent any long-term complications for the star forward.
As of now, it looks like MacKinnon will only miss one to two games maximum. This shouldn’t be too much of an issue for an already great Colorado Avalanche team. If, however, MacKinnon’s absence extends further into the future, then that will be a bit more worrisome.
For now, the focus for MacKinnon will be on staying healthy and hopefully returning to the Avalanche lineup as soon as possible. Colorado plays host to the Chicago Blackhawks for the home opener on Wednesday night before facing off against the St. Louis Blues on Saturday.