Canadiens forward Armia in COVID-19 protocol day before Stanley Cup final begins

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Montreal Canadiens forward Joel Armia has been placed in the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol and won't travel with the team to Tampa, Fla., for the start of the Stanley Cup final.

General manager Marc Bergevin made the announcement after Armia was not at practice in Montreal before the Canadiens travelled to play the Lightning.

Game 1 of the final goes Monday night.

A player on the protocol list has not necessarily tested positive for COVID-19. Players who have been in close contact with someone who tested positive, for example, are also on the list.

Armia spent 19 days in the protocol from March 22 to April 9.

The Finnish forward is having a productive post-season, posting career highs with five goals and eight points in 17 playoff games.

The Canadiens are also without interim coach Dominique Ducharme, who remains in isolation since testing positive for COVID-19 on June 18.

Assistant coach Luke Richardson has taken over bench duties, with Ducharme not scheduled to return until the Canadiens host Game 3 on Friday.

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