The Avs are home and on a roll again with a 3 game win streak. Last night’s 7-1 explosion over Minnesota was a bit of a statement that although they aren’t in a playoff spot right now they aren’t letting that bother them. It was also a statement from Nate MacKinnon that East Coast journalists really ought to stay up late and watch the magic when the Avs play.
Any blowout will give you some skewed numbers. At the time of the Avs 6th goal they were a +5 on the shot board and ended up a -6, so what. Score adjusted they were at 51% and that’s being generous to the Wilds. Their main offensive push came in garbage time and down 6-0 when they went on a 20-6 run that lasted about 12 minutes. For all intents an purposes this match was over halfway through.
The Avs PK killed all 3 Minny chances and the power play went 1 for 3. A good night on special teams for both units was a welcome change.
Defensive usage went Big Z, Barrie, Nemeth, Girard, Siemens, Lindholm at 5v5 and overall. Lindholm played nearly 15 minutes in his return to the lineup but struggled on the shot board.
Top 6 forwards were Comeau, Mikko, Mack, Nieto, Landy and Soderberg at 5v5 and Mack, Mikko, Comeau, Landy, Soderberg overall with Tyson Jost just a second behind Carl. Colin Wilson was low man at 4:30 after leaving the game with UBI midway through.
– Mack scored 2 goals and had 3 assists, nice night. That makes 7G/8A in 7 games since returning from injury and 5G/5A in the last 3 games. He’s back in the top 5 in NHL scoring and leading the league in points per game with 1.36
– Mikko Rantanen also had a whale of a game with a goal and 3 assists including his 100th NHL point on a pass to Tyson Barrie. He’s overshadowed by Mack of course but having a very special season in his own right. Right now he’s at a point per game pace with 21G/42A and sits 19th in NHL scoring.
– Carl Soderberg had a hilarious blind backhand goal from a terrible angle to score the Avs 200th goal of the season. You might recall that the Avs fell short of that mark by 36 last year. This year it’s conceivable that they have a 100 goal improvement in one season. They blew past last year’s point total a month ago and now are more than double that pace.
– The Avs got 6 points from the blueline last night. TB4 had a goal and assist while Patrik Nemeth and Sam Girard both had a pair of helpers. While many of question Nemeth’s (over)usage in the defensive zone sometimes, in the big picture he’s been a stout pickup off the waiver wire. He has 14 points in 50 games, not bad for a guy that people claim has no puck skills. Young Sam Girard is on another upswing and he now has 18 points in 55 games and only half of those are from the power play. Considering that he had a 20 game drought from mid-November until Christmas, we should see him in the 30’s for points next season. Or even better, which is scary. Sam and Nemo have become a pretty good pair over the past few games and last night were tops on the team with CF% of 62 and 58 respectively.
Burgundy Narrative Metric
– “Best guys being your best guys” gets a (+) and a wow, 10 points from the top line
– Corsi gets a (+) even tho it took score effects to get it
– Power Play gets a (+) for a rare good outing
– Turtle gets a (-) but a very understandable one
– Varly% gets a (+) for another solid outing
– Referee Oppression Index gets a (+) Didn’t even notice them outside of the Wilds offside gambit on Mack’s 2nd goal.
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The test gets harder tomorrow afternoon when the Avs face the powerhouse Preds
Burgundy Rainbow Post-Game Show from the Pepsi Center
The Avs are back in town and so is Vlad with thoughts from immediately after the game. Hit up our YouTube Channel (and subscribe if you haven’t already) for more features.