Coming off another winless road trip, the Colorado Avalanche headed home for the second night of a back-to-back as the St. Louis Blues came calling. Things started off as you’d expect from an Avalanche team mired so deep in last place they’re on the verge of being statistically eliminated from the playoffs with just under 20 games to go.
The Avalanche took one of their classic careless penalties just three minutes into the game when Rene Bourque was called for Holding Vladimir Tarasenko. The ensuing Blues power play didn’t last long as Matt Duchene gambled on trying to steal the puck but instead missed and then lost his man, leading to an easy Paul Stastny tap-in goal on goaltender Jeremy Smith’s back door.
The 1-0 lead was stretched to 2-0 when Avalanche defenseman Fedor Tyutin turned the puck over behind his net and Blues forward Kyle Brodziak pounced on it and beat Smith for the two-goal lead just 5:33 into the game.
The Avalanche eventually stabilized and took an 8-7 shot advantage into the first intermission. The second period started saw Colorado and St. Louis each get power play opportunities but only the Blues cashed in when Patrick Berglund ripped a one-timer from Colton Parayko past Smith, who got a piece of the puck but not enough to prevent it from becoming 3-0. Avalanche forward Gabriel Landeskog’s lazy turnover seconds earlier led directly to the goal.
The second period finished with a flurry of relative action but no further scoring and the Blues took a comfortable three-goal lead into the third period with them. The Avalanche racked up a 10-8 shot advantage in the third period, giving them a 27-25 edge throughout the game but it was all for nothing as Jake Allen posted the shutout, the 11th time Colorado has failed to register a goal this season.
1. Jake Allen
2. Paul Stastny
3. Alex Pietrangelo
PLAY OF THE GAME
Stastny’s goal was especially cruel for the home crowd who is still smarting from his decision to leave the Avalanche in favor of St. Louis years via free agency. It was also a great hockey play and exhibited some of the same issues Duchene has experienced defensively throughout his career.
Berglund’s goal pushed the lead to three goals, an absolutely insurmountable number given Colorado’s atrocious offense this season.
BY THE NUMBERS
Colorado’s homestand continues Tuesday night when the Carolina Hurricanes bring their plethora of young defensemen to Colorado.