Rantanen will return to Avs lineup for Game 1 against Flames

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — Colorado Avalanche All-Star forward Mikko Rantanen has recovered from an upper-body injury and will play in their first-round series against Calgary.

Game 1 is Thursday night in Calgary.

Rantanen has been sidelined since taking a check into the boards near the team benches at Dallas on March 21. He’s coming off a regular season in which he had a career-high 87 points and 31 goals. The right-winger also led the team with 16 power-play goals.

Colorado coach Jared Bednar said after practice Wednesday that he expects Rantanen to “play a lot, just like he normally does.”

Rantanen said he feels “really good” heading into the Flames series. He had four assists in six games last season during a first-round playoff loss to Nashville.