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Artturi Lehkonen finally cleared to play

The immigration ordeal has finally been dealt with for the Finnish forward.

NHL: MAR 19 Senators at Canadiens Photo by David Kirouac/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The fourth addition to the Colorado Avalanche at the trade deadline is finally available to play. After a week-long issue with Artturi Lehkonen’s immigration and work paperwork, he is finally able to play for his new team for the first time.

Lehkonen had been at the home games last week but was unable to play against the Vancouver Canucks or Philadelphia Flyers due to these immigration issues. He had been in Denver yesterday while the Avs played to a disappointing 3-2 overtime loss to the Minnesota Wild.

Now, the Finnish forward will join fellow Finnish forward Mikko Rantanen and the rest of the team in Calgary for tomorrow night’s best-of-the-west game against the Calgary Flames. His arrival to the team will be more than welcomed in Alberta later tonight and tomorrow.

With the Flames’ scorching run to the top of the Pacific Division, this gives the Avs another big piece of depth that can take them far for the rest of the regular season. Depth had been an issue last game in Minnesota, and Lehkonen will fill part of that hole and be part of the solution.

We will see what Jared Bednar ends up doing with him and how he slots in the team. With Captain Gabriel Landeskog out injured, Lehkonen will likely slot into the second line where Valeri Nichushkin would usually be. This would then force Alex Newhook back down to the third line.

Avs fans have been clamoring at the idea of Lehkonen joining the team and get a first-hand glance of what no. 62 can do for the burgundy and blue. Now the time has come for him to place his mark with an ‘A’ on his chest for the first time on TV anyways. His first home game will come later this week against the San Jose Sharks.