Senators forward Alex Kovalev sidelined one week with knee injury

OTTAWA – Ottawa Senators forward Alex Kovalev will be sidelined for at least a week with a knee injury.

The 37-year-old felt some discomfort after playing in back-to-back games over the weekend. He’s been hampered by lingering pain at various points during the season.

“Obviously, he hasn’t been 100 per cent healthy for awhile,” Senators coach Cory Clouston said after practice Monday. “It’s kind of been hit and miss. His knee will get better (and then) whether he takes a bad step or gets it banged or if it’s just wear and tear—two games back-to-back is tough on him. …

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“To me, it’s an opportunity for somebody to step up.”

Kovalev has eight goals and 18 points in 42 games.

Ottawa plays at Boston on Tuesday and Long Island on Thursday. It returns home to face Calgary on Friday.

The Senators are already missing forward Jason Spezza with a shoulder injury and have gone 0-3-2 over their last five games.

“We have to stay positive, we have to keep working hard,” said Clouston.