Avalanche All-Star forward Matt Duchene out indefinitely with hand injury

DENVER – The struggling Colorado Avalanche will be without leading scorer Matt Duchene indefinitely because of a hand injury.

The All-Star forward was hurt in a 9-1 loss to Calgary on Monday. Duchene wasn’t on the ice for the morning skate Wednesday before a game against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Duchene has 21 goals and 26 assists this season. He also has taken a team-high 141 shots.

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This was the latest blow to a squad that’s dropped eight straight games in regulation, the longest skid since the team relocated to Denver in 1995-96. Peter Forsberg recently pulled the plug on his comeback attempt after just two games with Colorado.

Once in the thick of the playoff race, the Avs have tumbled to near the bottom of the Western Conference standings.