Denver, Colorado) – The recently consistent Colorado Avalanche made it five wins in their last seven games with a 5-1 victory over the New York Rangers Friday night at the Pepsi Center.
Displaying unbridled discipline and determination, the Avs’ play compensated nicely for their depleted roster, and they have moved forwardly in the Northwest Division with a perfect 3-0 record during this homestand where they outscored the opponents 15-7.
After a tightly played first period that ended scoreless, the Avs erupted for four goals in the second period – all full strength – en route to a dominating performance over the Rangers who lost their second consecutive game. Colorado’s balanced attack was led by Matt Duchene who had a goal and two assists. David Jones, Kevin Porter, and Kevin Shattenkirk also had goals in the middle period… while Daniel Winnik rounded out the Avs’ scoring with an early third period goal. The Rangers’ Derek Stepan foiled Craig Anderson’s bid for a shut out to complete the score sheet.
Anderson, returning from a right knee injury that kept him out of the Colorado lineup for 10 games showed no signs of rust, as he was stellar in goal stopping 25 shots. Tonight’s game brought to light the discipline Colorado has displayed recently; they out hit the Rangers and dominated faceoffs all night long – winning 38 of 62 draws.
Throughout this homestand, the Avs seem rejuvenated with a much more balanced attacking and defensive system. Now, if they could transfer this style to their road games they might have a shot at making the playoff come spring. The team kicks off a three-game road trip tomorrow night against the formidable Dallas Stars.
Without a doubt, the Avs’ performance tonight indicates that the young team has unlimited potential and could very well solidify themselves in their division if they can acquire one or two solid role players – in particular a strong penalty killer – to create some more depth.
Game Notes: The Avs’ four second period goals represented their season high for goals in a period. Matt Duchene scored his first goal since Oct. 26 – the night Anderson got hurt. Rangers forward Stepan scored his first goal in 18 games. New York pulled its prized goalie Henrik Lundquist after he yielded Duchene’s goal and replaced him with backup Martin Biron.
About the Author
Written by Donovan Wilson
Donovan is a professional writer with more than 10 years of corporate communications and public relations experience. He currently resides in the Phoenix, Arizona area where he currently does freelance work for the Arizona Repubilc. With a degree in English from Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass., and a Master's degree in journalism from the University of Missouri - Columbia, Donovan has written for a variety of newspapers across the country. The single parent of an 13-year old boy, Donovan is a physical fitness enthusiast whom you can find on a soccer field or in the gym enduring an intense cardio workout. A sports enthusiast, Donovan has played competitive college hockey, soccer, and track and field. During his spare time, it’s not uncommon to see Donovan volunteering his services to a homeless shelter in Phoenix where he helps to feed the homeless. Currently, Donovan sits on the board of two nonprofit organizations – Green Nonprofits, Inc. and Queens Sickle Cell Advocacy Network, Inc. in New York City.