Avs' Nazem Kadri out for Series vs. Oilers After Suffering Injury on Evander Kane Hit

Erin WalshJune 5, 2022

EDMONTON, AB - JUNE 04: Colorado Avalanche Center Nazem Kadri (91) in action in the warm up during the Edmonton Oilers versus the Colorado Avalanche Stanley Cup Western Conference Finals, game 3 on June 04, 2022 at Rogers Place in Edmonton, AB. (Photo by Curtis Comeau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Curtis Comeau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Colorado Avalanche center Nazem Kadri has been ruled out for the remainder of the Western Conference Finals against the Edmonton Oilers, head coach Jared Bednar confirmed while speaking with reporters following a 4-2 Game 3 win on Saturday.

Kadri left the first period of Saturday's game after taking a hit from behind into the end boards by Oilers forward Evander Kane.

"He's out. He'll be out for the series at least, if not longer," Bednar said. "I mean, the hit, it's the most dangerous play in hockey. I mean, he puts him in head-first from behind, you know, eight feet off the boards. I'll leave it at that."

As Kadri was trying to control the puck in the offensive zone just about one minute into the game, Kane crosschecked him in the numbers and knocked him into the boards. Kane was assessed a five-minute major penalty for boarding, and Kadri did not return to the game.

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Evander Kane was given a 5-minute major for boarding on this hit on Nazem Kadri. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/StanleyCup?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#StanleyCup</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/LetsGoOilers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#LetsGoOilers</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GoAvsGo?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#GoAvsGo</a> <a href="https://t.co/xRv9dN2WQs">pic.twitter.com/xRv9dN2WQs</a>

Avalanche forward Gabriel Landeskog also shared his thoughts on the hit in his postgame comments, telling reporters that he's sure the NHL Department of Safety will review it for a possible fine or suspension.

"I was on the bench, but I don't like it," Landeskog said. "You know, those are the ones that kind of gives you the chills down your spine. You're taught from a young age that you don't do that and especially in that distance from the boards. So, it's a dangerous play, and I don't know what else to say. I'm sure they'll take a look at it.

Kane was last suspended for an on-ice incident in February 2020 for elbowing Winnipeg Jets defenseman Neal Pionk. He also served a 21-game suspension for violating the NHL's COVID-19 protocols in September 2021, but that wasn't an on-ice incident and wouldn't be factored into a potential suspension for boarding Kadri.

Kadri has been one of the best players for the Avalanche this year, tallying 28 goals and 59 assists in 71 regular-season games. The 31-year-old entered Saturday's game with six goals and eight assists in 12 playoff games.

With Kadri sidelined, J.T. Compher, who scored the game-winning goal in Game 3, could replace him on the second line. It's unclear who the Avs might call up to join the team for the remainder of the Western Conference Finals.

Colorado holds a 3-0 lead over Edmonton and could clinch a berth in the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 2001 with a win in Game 4 on Monday at Rogers Place.