Samuel Girard Injured in Game 3 Against St. Louis Blues

Samuel Girard injured
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The Colorado Avalanche defenceman Samuel Girard was injured and left Game 3 against the St. Louis Blues Saturday night. The team has yet to make an official announcement on his availability. That being said, Girard was confirmed to have left the building via an ambulance to a local hospital. Our thoughts go out to Girard, his family, and his teammates in hopes of a speedy recovery and nothing more serious. Update: Girard will be out for the remainder of the postseason.

Samuel Girard Injured In Game 3

Girard pursued a puck behind his own net after the Blues dumped a puck in deep. As he reached and played the puck up the wall to the left of Darcy Kuemper, Ivan Barbashev delivered a punishing hit on the forecheck. Girard appeared altogether unprepared for the contact in what looked like a clean hit, as his shoulders and head slammed hard into the glass. Barbashev simply finished his pursuit of the defenceman and was not too late to make contact either. The referees called no penalties on the play.

In the regular season, Girard scored five goals and 23 assists for 28 points in 67 games. Those numbers dipped significantly from his highly productive season a year ago. The defenceman posted 32 points in just 48 games back in 2020-21. So far in the postseason, Girard had three points in six games. He also hasn’t been particularly effective with regards to advanced statistics, exhibiting a -5.2 percent relative Corsi.

Over his five-year NHL career, Girard only played thus far for the Avs and Nashville Predators. In 340 career games, Girard collected 22 goals and 122 assists for 144 points thus far. He was originally drafted by the Nashville Predators in the second round, 47th overall of the 2016 NHL draft.

What This Means for the Future

Hopes obviously remain that Girard was not seriously injured on the play. However, a trip to the hospital doesn’t usually bode well for a player’s availability going forward. That situation likely forces coach Jared Bednar to dress a new defenceman for the first time so far in this postseason. To date, the team went with Girard, Cale Makar, Devon Toews, Erik Johnson, Josh Manson, and Bowen Byram in all their games.

Lucky for them, though, they possess significant depth at this position. Ryan Murray may be the next man up, if available; he was sidelined with a wrist injury in late March and hasn’t played since. Beyond him, Colorado also has Jack Johnson, Kurtis MacDermid, Jacob MacDonald and Justin Barron available. Jack Johnson played 74 regular season games, leading this group in recent experience in the lineup. On the other end, Barron only played twice but could be an exciting young player to insert. Should they want something in between, Jacob MacDonald looks like the obvious option. MacDermid remains a specific choice for specific scenarios, as a big-bodied, hard-nosed tough guy. And maybe, that’s what Colorado will want, especially in response to the kind of physicality the Blues bring to the table. After all, that was exactly how Girard’s injury came about, at the receiving end of Barbashev’s bone-crushing hit.

Maybe Bednar will take the opportunity to dress seven defenders and 11 forwards, too. There are plenty of options that could come into play. Colorado should be thankful to have those options, Joe Sakic did a commendable job building this team.

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