Avalanche activate Nathan MacKinnon from injured reserve


The Colorado Avalanche have activated star center Nathan MacKinnon off injured reserve ahead of Saturday’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

MacKinnon has not played since Dec. 5 due to an upper-body injury that forced him out of a loss to the Philadelphia Flyers. He was placed on IR the following day.

The Avalanche said at the time that MacKinnon would miss about four weeks.

MacKinnon, 27, has eight goals and 26 assists for the defending Stanley Cup champions, who have been maligned by a series of injuries this season. Colorado enters Saturday in fourth place in the Central Division with a 19-12-3 record.

A three-time Hart Trophy finalist, MacKinnon agreed to an eight-year, $100.8 million extension before the season. In the salary-cap era, it was the NHL’s richest contract.

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