Avs: Johnson injury ‘short term,’ Stuart (back) and Berra (ankle) out longer than expected

Of the three Avalanche players Patrick Roy gave health updates for yesterday — Erik Johnson, Brad Stuart and Reto Berra — it’s fair to say Johnson’s the most integral.

So, we can start with the good news.

Johnson, who left Monday’s win over Los Angeles with a lower-body injury, will only be out “short term,” per Roy.

“It could be five, 10 days, 12 days,” he told the Denver Post. “Short term.”

There’s no denying the impact Johnson has on the Avs (and, the impact his absence would have.) The 27-year-old sits second on the team in TOI per game, at 23:30, and leads all blueliners in goals, with seven.

Johnson’s injury also puts a bigger pinch on the Colorado defense.

Stuart, one of the most veteran presences on the club, hasn’t played since Nov. 10 with a back injury. There was some optimism recently that a return was close, but Roy said Stuart “still has pain in his leg, coming from his back,” which essentially tapped the brakes on any timetable for a comeback.

As a result, the club grabbed Columbus d-man Andrew Bodnarchuk off waivers yesterday.

Finally, there’s Berra.

After suffering an ankle injury while playing hallway soccer prior to a game in late December, Semyon Varlamov‘s usual backup skated this week and suffered pain afterward.  While Roy said it wasn’t a setback, he did acknowledge Berra may be out longer than expected.

If so, Calvin Pickard‘s stint with the Avs will be longer than expected as well.

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