Sven Andrighetto (C-) – Didn’t really notice him at all today.

Tyson Barrie (C-) – He had a really tough night in Washington and he usually responds to rough performances with a nice game after but today he just didn’t really have it going on. There were some turnovers and questionable pinches as it really looked to me like he was pressing a bit too hard to make something happen. That ripper off the bar in OT was a heartbreaker.

Matt Calvert (C) – Calvert was okay today. That line had a hot start and got it going early but fell off hard. Calvert is always good for hard work but there wasn’t enough actual shot generation there.

J.T. Compher (C+) – I was ready to give Compher a ‘D’ for his game today because he just wasn’t doing anything but hard work and a good bounce got him that much-needed goal late in the third period.

Sheldon Dries (C-) – The fourth line did pretty much nothing today.

Samuel Girard (D) – A good start from Girard but he fell off hard. Totally lost track of Josh Bailey on the game-tying goal in the third period and made no real attempt to recover once the puck got behind him. This was a pretty disappointing finish to this game from just about everyone.

Ryan Graves (C) – Graves had a really nice start to the game, making the smart decisions we’ve become accustomed to seeing from him. It was all smooth sailing until he was taking the puck back into his own zone, stopped randomly to cause the contact with Kerfoot, and turned the puck over right to the Isles, who immediately capitalized to make it 2-1 and give them some serious life. Everything was going well for Colorado until that moment. It wasn’t the fault of Graves they totally collapsed in the third or anything but that turnover sparked the Islanders. Plenty of people wanted to blame Kerfoot but if you watch the whole play unfold, Graves causes that contact by doing the one thing he couldn’t do in that situation. It’s the big mistake he’s largely avoided until that moment.

A.J. Greer (C-) – The fourth line wasn’t very good today but Greer took a totally avoidable penalty when he decided to elbow a guy in the face. Can’t do that when you’re looking for more minutes.

Erik Johnson (B-) – Johnson followed the pattern of the rest of his team as he had a good start and then cratered as the game wore on. He continued his offensive resurgence with two well-earned points today. Even though his play tapered off, production still matters.

Alexander Kerfoot (C-) – A lot of people immediately wanted to blame that first Isles goal on Kerfoot for causing the turnover but he’s going back to support the outlet there and that’s pretty standard stuff. Graves stopping and creating contact with Kerfoot isn’t on 13. That said, Kerfoot’s extremely lackadaisical follow-up where he casually followed Eberle but didn’t make any active attempt to play real defense was the real problem there. Execution is one thing but poor effort is always inexcusable. He got a freebie secondary assist on the Johnson goal.

Gabriel Landeskog (F) – This was the worst showing from the top line maybe all season. They got simply dominated. His unwillingness to shoot on the empty net when up 2-1 was insane and may have cost them the game today. He scores in that situation, they go up 3-1 in the third period. Instead, they gave up the tying goal just minutes later. He HAS to shoot that puck. HAS TO.

Nathan MacKinnon (F) – In the process of being dominated, MacKinnon’s total no-show was the most frustrating. He’s supposed to be the superstar of this group and I’m not sure he ever left Washington he was such a ghost today.

Patrik Nemeth (C-) – Of all the issues Colorado had today, I didn’t really think Nemeth was really one of them. He didn’t end up involved in anything very good or bad and that’s something you’d take from Nemeth just about every night.

Matt Nieto (C) – The effort outpaced the actual results. A nice assist on a hard-working shift for the game’s first goal but that was the end of the effectiveness from 83.

Mikko Rantanen (F) – Almost made something out of nothing when Lehner left his net to play the puck but gave it right to Rantanen, who made the right play in feeding Landeskog. That was it for Rantanen’s notable day, as he joined his linemates in otherwise getting crushed. His penalty was his 20th minor of the season, putting him in the top 15 in the NHL in minor penalties. He has to find a way to stop taking so many infractions.

Carl Soderberg (A) – A three-point game and the only Av outside of Varlamov who seemed engaged from beginning to end. His fly by in OT helped create the space for Casey Cizikas (??) to make a play on the game-winning goal and that questionable decision is the only thing keeping him from the A+ here. I’m admittedly nitpicking an otherwise great game from Soderberg.

Semyon Varlamov (B-) – He started off the game on fire, keeping the Avs in it and making a number of big saves. The first goal was a terrible turnover but it was another puck that Varlamov stopped but ended up behind him. We saw it multiple times in Washington and again today. There wasn’t much of anything he could do on goals two and three as he got left hanging on two and three was a fantastic shot. I’d like to see him come up with the OT goal, though, as it again looked like he got a piece of it and it found its way in. It felt like a step forward for him but he still gave up four goals.

Colin Wilson (C) – Was entirely anonymous all game until that great shift that led to the Avs tying the game late. Tough to grade those guys out.

Nikita Zadorov (C-) – Big Z responded to a terrible outing against Washington with another pretty poor performance here. He made a couple of mistakes that could have been big time but Varlamov bailed him out each time. Eyes said he was a non-factor and the numbers said the Isles didn’t mind him being on the ice. He needs a good effort tomorrow in Boston to salvage this road trip.


A.J. Haefele, was born in Aurora, Colorado, raised in Katy, Texas and is the Avalanche Editor and Editor-In-Chief of BSN Denver. Education: A.J. studied at Stephen F. Austin State University before moving back to Colorado in 2009. Career:  Before joining BSN Denver, A.J. had been writing for and briefly managed the popular Avalanche blog, Mile High Hockey. A.J. began contributing in 2010 with detailed practice reports, training camp coverage, and in-depth looks at Colorado’s divisional foes. He would expand his horizons with free agency analysis, draft coverage, and more day-to-day looks at the team before taking over the blog as Co-Managing Editor. It was a short-lived tenure atop before BSN Denver came calling. Most memorable sports moment: Ray Bourque lifting the Stanley Cup in 2001. John Elway winning his first Super Bowl is a very close second but Bourque winning the Cup and finishing “Mission 16W” is one of the greatest stories in all of sports. The finest sports book I’ve ever read: Big fan of “Moneyball”. The implications on the sport and the inside look at how an organization changed its attitude to exploit a market inefficiency was fascinating. One sports movie that I can’t live without: There aren’t really any I dislike. Major League and Cool Runnings were my favorites growing up but Miracle and Goon have been my favorites as an adult. Also can’t live without the Rocky and now Creed movies. Most memorable experience as a reporter: Covering the 2017 NHL Draft was a dream come true for me. I’d always wanted to attend a draft and I got to do it while covering the team selecting fourth overall. Interviewing Cale Makar after he was selected is something I’ll never forget. The sport that started it all: Baseball! My dad was an enormous baseball fan and when the Rockies came into existence, it was an instant bond for the two of us and created sports fanaticism that has defined most of my life.