Colorado Avalanche News: Jonathan Drouin Gets Brutal News Ahead Of 1st-Round Series

A tough blow for the Colorado Avalanche in their hopes of making another run at a Stanley Cup, as they will now be forced to play their first-round series against the Winnipeg Jets without the services of Jonathan Drouin.

The top-line forward just wrapped up the best regular season of his NHL career, popping 19 goals with 37 assists for 56 points and a plus-minus rating of +12 in over 18 minutes a game. His points, +/- rating and TOI were all personal bests.

Drouin was injured in the second period of the Avs' meaningless final game of the season against the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday. It was essentially a non-contact injury as he slipped and fell and was in obvious pain. He immediately exited the game.

As for how serious the injury is, all one needs to do is look at the fact that the Avalanche immediately ruled him out for the entire first-round series. 

Drouin will be missed not just for his play alongside Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen on the top line, but also on the first power-play unit. 

“Super unfortunate. I feel really bad for him,” MacKinnon said. "I know he’s crushed right now. He’s been building all season for this. We can’t replace him.

“Obviously, it sucks for the team, but for him as a person, it’s just so sad. Hopefully we get him back sooner than later.”

Drouin was the third overall pick by the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2013, and has played in 564 career regular-season games, with 96 goals and 337 points.

Colorado has recalled veteran center Chris Wagner to replace him on the roster. At practice, Zach Parise was skating with MacKinnon and Rantanen on the first line, but there's no word if that's how things will look once the puck is dropped on Sunday for Game One. 

Photo: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports