With two straight wins since going 8-10-4, and one of those wins coming over the then “undefeated” Chicago Blackhawks last Friday which ended their 24-game point streak, the Avalanche have the potential to go on a run in the next few games to get back into the playoff picture.
After allowing the game-winner in the last 40 seconds of the third period against the Blackhawks in Chicago last Wednesday and then falling 3-2 to lose their third straight game, the fans were surely ready to give up on the season. Not only did the Avs fail to end the Blackhawks 24-game point streak, but they gave up that late goal to not even get one point out of the contest.
Especially in the mainstream media, the Blackhawks were looked at as getting some more late game heroics to continue their amazing streak. But the Avs played phenomenal and played to win that game. They let up just a little, trying to get the game to overtime, and the Championship-calibur Blackhawks capitalized on it. But the Avs were not content with losing that game and wanted another crack at it.
Luckily enough, the Avs were amidst a home-and-home with Chicago. It’s one of the hardest thing in sports to sweep a home-and-home series in the NHL. Mainly because the teams become extremely familiar with one another and the losing team can improve off their mistakes that lost them the game, and instead capitalize on and correct them. And that’s exactly what the Avs did in the second match-up.
In the first game of the h0me-and-home in Chicago, the Avs tied up the game 1-1 late in the first period and stole the momentum right away and scored in the second period as well, and could’ve taken that right into the rest of the game, but instead let up their pressure, and couldn’t hold their lead in the third period. But the Avs wouldn’t make that mistake again.
In the second game of the home-and-home in Colorado, the Avs once again tied the game up 1-1 late in the first period. Only this time, they would not let their foot off the pedal. The Avs exploded in the second period with their momentum that led to 4 goals that would lead to the victory to end the Blackhawks 24-game point streak.
A game like that, over arguably the best team in the NHL, is something that a team can build on for the rest of the season.
The Avalanche took that momentum into their game last night against San Jose and got a buzzer beater from Duchene in the last second of overtime to steal that game away right before the shoot-out was set to take place. The Avs played phenomenal for their third straight game, with outstanding puck movement and solid defense that we hadn’t seen all season.
Don’t be surprised if the Avs can go on a run here in next couple games to propel themselves right back into the playoff picture. At 10-10-4, the Avs are only 4 points out of the 8-spot. They play the Oilers on Tuesday, and then begin another home-and-home series, this time it’ll be with Minnesota.
The Avs play 5 of their next 7 at home, where they are 8-2-1 and play much better all around.