Avalanche Star Nathan Mackinnon To Miss Opener With Covid-19

FILE - In this May 19, 2021, file photo, Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon is congratulated at the bench after scoring his second goal of night in the third period of Game 2 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup first-round playoff series against the St. Louis Blues, in Denver. The National Hockey League is ready to drop the puck on a full 82-game season with fans back in every arena and a wide-open race for the Stanley Cup. The best shot belongs to Colorado, the preseason Cup favorite, according to FanDuel Sportsbook and anyone who has watched Nathan MacKinnon try to will his team to a championship as one of the best players in the world. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)
FILE - In this May 19, 2021, file photo, Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon is congratulated at the bench after scoring his second goal of night in the third period of Game 2 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup first-round playoff series against the St. Louis Blues, in Denver. The National Hockey League is ready to drop the puck on a full 82-game season with fans back in every arena and a wide-open race for the Stanley Cup. The best shot belongs to Colorado, the preseason Cup favorite, according to FanDuel Sportsbook and anyone who has watched Nathan MacKinnon try to will his team to a championship as one of the best players in the world. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

DENVER (AP) — Colorado Avalanche star Nathan McKinnon will miss the season opener against the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday night after testing positive for a breakthrough infection of COVID-19.

Colorado general manager Joe Sakic said Tuesday that MacKinnon’s positive test surfaced Monday and that the center is “asymptomatic and feeling good.”

MacKinnon did not practice Tuesday. The earliest he could return is Saturday when the Avalanche host the St. Louis Blues.

That's when Avalanche coach Jared Bednar is expected to return to the bench after being placed on the NHL's COVID-19 protocol last week.

Sakic said the team is 100% vaccinated against the coronavirus.

“I think everybody is tired of dealing with it, but it's here and it's the world we live in,” Sakic said. “You've just got to deal with that.”

“The guys are responsible and careful in everything they do,” Sakic said. “But (COVID-19) is out there. Everybody in every sport is going to have to deal with it. It’s not going away anytime soon. It doesn't look like, anyways."

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