Arizona Coyotes’ Christian Fischer, Ilya Lyubushkin in COVID-19 protocols

Dec 27, 2021, 8:36 AM | Updated: 11:06 am

The Arizona Coyotes have added forward Christian Fischer and defenseman Ilya Lyubushkin to COVID-19 protocols, the team said on Sunday.

The team recalled forward Jan Jenik from the AHL Tucson Roadrunners and named six players to its taxi squad: Michael Carcone, Cam Crotty, Bokondji Imama, Vladislav Kolyachonok, Josef Korenar and Blake Speers.

The moves come as the NHL set an agreement with the players union to create taxi squads, amid other changes, as the league returns to play Tuesday following an extended holiday break due to a rise in coronavirus cases.

Arizona (6-21-2) last played on Dec. 17 in a 6-5 overtime victory against the Anaheim Ducks. It had games against Vancouver, Seattle, Tampa Bay and Los Angeles postponed. The game against the Kings set for Monday is the last postponed game before the Coyotes are scheduled to visit the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday.

As of Monday, Arizona will play that game without Fischer and Lyubushkin, who each have six points this season.

Lyubushkin has appeared in every game this year and averages 18:08 of time on ice.

Fischer has made 22 appearances and in those outings played 13:00 per game.

Each team will be allowed to have a taxi squad of up to six players and to make emergency recalls from the minors if COVID-19 absences would cause anyone to play without a full lineup. Taxi squads, which were used during the shortened 2021 season, are set to be in effect until at least the All-Star break in early February.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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