Avs defenseman Cale Makar will make NHL debut in Game 3

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DENVER | Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar will make his NHL debut in Game 3 against Calgary, his favorite childhood team.

Massachusetts defenseman Cale Makar (16) controls the puck during the second period in a semifinal against Denver during the Frozen Four NCAA men’s college hockey tournament Thursday, April 11, 2019, in Buffalo, N.Y. (AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes)

Makar signed a three-year deal with Colorado on Sunday — a day after Massachusetts lost in the Frozen Four championship game. The 20-year-old will step in for injured defenseman Samuel Girard.

The Colorado-Calgary series is tied going into Monday’s game.

Growing up in Calgary, Makar and his family were big Flames fans. He joked they’re “fully Avs converted now.”

Makar had 49 points for UMass and won the Hobey Baker Memorial Award as college hockey’s top player. He practiced Monday morning and impressed his new Avalanche teammates. All-Star forward Nathan MacKinnon said Makar is “so smooth and so agile. You can kind of tell why he was so dominant in college.”