April 5, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets right wing Cam Atkinson (13) is congratulated after his second goal of the game by center Derick Brassard (16) and left wing R.J. Umberger (18) during the second period of the game against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE
That's all folks. The Colorado Avalanche lost to the "worst" team in the league tonight to seal their post season fate: they have none.
On the second shift of the game Gabriel Landeskog rang a shot off the crossbar, and a minute later the Blue Jackets hit a post of their own. In between all the clanging metal, McLeod and Dorsett squared off in a pretty even bout that sparked of display of rage by both teams for the next few minutes.
The BJs struck first when a bad bounce sprung Cam Atkinson for a mini breakaway. The little fella made a good move despite being interfered with and beat Varlamov to make it 1-0. Hejda and O`Byrne both got burnt badly on the long pass play.
The visitor's lead would not last long however as the Avs would answer on David Jones 20th of the season. The recently recovered Jamie McGinn flew up the ice and Jones wisely followed his lead. They created a brief 2-on-1 and McGinn slung the puck to the slot where Jones tipped it past Steve Mason to knot the game up at 1. Beauty play. Welcome back Jamie!
Rick Nash would cash in on a shot by Letestu that trickled behind Varlamov to get Columbus back their 1 goal lead. Nash positioned himself at the side of the net behind Varly and jumped on the puck as it squeezed through the Avs' net minder. Period ends 2-1 Blue Jackets.
Erik Johnson took one for the team to start the second period when he took a stick off his chin, resulting in a 4-minute powerplay. The Avs wasted no time as Paul Stastny scored just seconds into the man advantage. The Avs (Jones in particular) created a ton of chances on the second half of the penalty but couldn't beat Mason. Game tied again, 2-2.
But the Avalanche couldn't stay out of the penalty box as Stastny and O`Byrne combined to give Columbus 1 minute and 30 seconds of 5-on-3. Nash scored his second of the game with 4 seconds left on the first penalty to give the BJs their 3rd lead of the game. They would add to that when Shane O'Brien coughed up the puck exiting his own zone to give Atkinson his second goal of the game and Columbus a 2-goal lead. Avs down 4-2 entering the most important 3rd period in years.
Sacco pulled Varlamov with just under 4 minutes to play. Desperate measures are the last hope of the defeated. Cam Atkinson scored the empty-netter to net his first career hat trick and round out the scoring and also end the Avs post-season aspirations. Thanks for playing.
MHH Best Three Avs of the Night
- Stastny - 1 G, 1 A and actually looked like he gave a damn
- Jones - 1 G, also looked like he gave a damn
- McGinn - 1 A, hustle and bustle, rage and anger, shock and awe
- McGinn - Stastny - Jones
- Landeskog - O`Reilly - Olver
- Downie - Duchene - Hejduk
- McLeod - McClement - Mueller
- Barrie - O'Brien
- Hejda - O`Byrne
- Hunwick - Johnson
- Poor team defense tonight.
- The Avs play Nashville Saturday for the season finale. That game could have meant something.
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