Huge, huge game. Theodore against Backstrom.
- Sakic, Forsberg, Jones
- Stastny, Brunette, Hejduk
- Arnason, Smyth, McLeod
- Guite, McCormick, Laperriere
- Liles, Hannan
- Foote, Sauer
- Finger, Salei
Forsberg returns. Wolski and Hlinka are both scratched in favor of the Codys. Foote returns, bumping Cumiskey to the press box.
18:54 Oh crap, Mick McGeough is reffing tonight. I hope this game isn't decided by his love of getting his mug on TV. At leat the 1st call goes our way - Kurtis Foster called for crosschecking.
18:54 Some woman behind the Minnesota bench appears to be wearing curtains. Somehow, I missed this fashion trend. Then again, my idea of "dressy" is my nice jean jacket.
18:05 Radivoyovich gets a terrific shorthanded chance right in front of Theodore.
17:49 And Demitra gets one too. Not a good start for the PP.
17:34 5 on 3 coming up. Brett Burns fires it over the glass. :40 on the 2-man.
16:20 Liles makes 3 excellent plays to keep the puck inside the zone. Just one shot on the 5 on 3 (Liles) and none so far on the remaining 5 on 4.
13:24 Stastny intercepts the puck in the Minnesota zone, but runs out of real estate on the way to the net.
12:52 Minnesota has had WAY too many open shots from the slot.
12:37 Stastny goes off for hooking. I just saw McLeod - he was the 12th forward. He and McCormick are getting the call over Wolski and Hlinka tonight. I still haven't seen who the 6th defenseman is - it's between Leopold, Salei and Cumiskey. I assume Salei, but don't know for sure.
12:30 Oh shit. Not only do we have McGeough, but we have a guy reffing his first NHL game. If I had to choose, I'd take the noob.
11:44 Sakic, working on the 5 on 4, finds himself with the puck behind the Minnesota net. He was ALL alone - he could have done pretty much anything with the puck. He rushes a bit and finds Finger in front. Finger gets a good shot, but Backstrom makes the save.
11:06 Score Minnesota. Rolston skates around Lappy on the ice, dishes back to Burns at the point, and Burns fires it passed Theodore. Theodore was screened by Todd Fedoruk on the play. 1-0 Minnesota.
10:50 As I thought, Salei is the 6th D.
9:59 Derek Boogaard says "hello" to McLeod by throwing him into the boards. McLeod responds with the most insincere, half-hearted "why, I outta..." response in the history of hockey. Meanwhile, Keith Carney is going off for hooking.
8:13 I'm not one of those guys yelling "shoot the puck" at hockey games...but geez, fellas.
3:19 Radevoyic is down after getting hit by Forsberg. Radivojovic is ducking a bit as Forsberg hits him and he ends up getting a shoulder to the head. He's ok though.
1:15 Penalty on McCormick. Holding.
That's it, 1-0 Minnesota after 1. The Avs need to get more pucks on the net. They've had the puck with space, but seem reluctant to give the puck up.
17:30 Forsberg is giving and receiving a lot of contact tonight.
16:45 Tough shift for McLeod. He misses a check on one end on Schulz and is on the receiving end of a hit by Burns at the other.
16:04 Parrish off for hooking. 4th PP of the night for Colorado. A goal would be nice.
15:27 Getting into the zone would be nice.
15:09 They do both. Sakic scores on the PP. Stastny feeds him from behind the net. I may be mistaken, but I think that ties him with Gretzky on the all-time PP goal list.
13:46 After checking Wiki, I believe I am right. Both have 204. I want to say they are tied for 12th. Would have been nice for Vs to mention that...
12:22 The Avs St Baldrick's Day hair cut for charity thing gets a little national ink. Well, as national as Vs is.
11:11 The Avs have been knocking the door here.
10:18 Radevojivec scored, redirecting a Burns shot. Theodore is screened (Rolston this time) and has no clue the puck is coming. 2-1 Minnesota.
10:03 I had Smyth with Arnason earlier, but he seems to have switched with McLeod. McLeod has joined McCormick with Arnie and Smyth is playing with Lappy and Guite. Is there any Avalanche player who's been moved around during a game than Smyth?
6:03 Koivu interferes with Forsberg. McGeough completely ignores it (shades of Liles getting mugged in front of a blind Mick the Dick last year). The other ref, the one with a thousand less games under his belt and 100 feet away from the action, sees the penalty that is inches from Mick. McGeough, realizing his TV time is dwindling, decides to call Forsberg for diving. Ridiculous call by a ridiculous ref.
5:21 I'm still fuming about that call.
4:13 Penalty on the Wild coming up. It's the other ref calling it, of course. Hooking on Demitra.
1:42 Forsberg gets absolutely mugged by Burns. Burns has Foppa in a bear hug behind the net, 5 feet from McGeough. Believe it or not, McGeough doesn't feel that is penalty worthy. To add insult to everything, Schulz levels Forsberg into the boards. Great job, Mick!
:08 "I just saw Sauer be hard on Gaborik". *blush
2-1 Minnesota after two.
During the intermission, the Vs crew noted that Sakic has 8 career goals on St Patrick's Day, one behind Bernie Nicholls and Dino Ciccarelli. I wonder if he moved up on any other career lists, guys?
16:40 Lappy is going off for interference.
15:34 Lots of 5 on 4 PK time for Sakic tonight, which is not the norm. With the PP time, he's got to be pushing some big minutes tonight.
8:39 Several chances at the side of the net by Sakic and Forsberg.
8:33 Bruno has moved up the Sakic line while Smyth has joined Stastny (his 3rd line of the night)
8:07 Tremendous sprawling save by Theodore to keep the Avs in it.
6:10 Forsberg draws a penalty. He stickhandles through two zones and ultimately goes down with Bouchard chasing him. Amazingly, McGeough makes this call. And, to be honest, I think Forsberg fell - I don't think Bouchard did anything wrong.
5:47 We hit the post. Guh.
4:27 Geez. So many chances. Sakic. Salei. Hannan. Liles.
4:11 Bouchard is back on the ice.
3:12 The Minnesota PA folks are playing Steel Dragon. Sweet.
2:27 Sakic has been terrific tonight.
1:30 Salei with a great hip check on Rolston.
1:11 Theo is off.
:59 Jones, Liles and Jones both have great scoring chances.
:40 Holy fuck, my DirecTV signal drops for 20 seconds. SUPERB timing.
:06 That's it. Veilleux takes Forsberg's drop pass and fires it the length of the ice and into the net. Minnesota wins 3-1.
The Avs stay in 7th in the conference, and could fall to 8th if the Canucks win later tonight.