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Game Notes: Game 7, Avalanche at Blackhawks

1st Period

20:00 Khabibulin vs Theodore. Khabibulin always seems to be tough against the Avalanche. Meanwhile, Theodore's troubles last year started against Chicago, just a few games into the season.

19:50 Toews takes the opening faceoff against his idol, Joe Sakic.

19:12 Hejduk is in the lineup tonight. Glad to have him back.

17:53 First penalty of the night: hooking on #94 for the Blackhawks. I really need to remember to get the opposing team's roster list up before I start watching the game. (Later: it’s Yanic Perreault)

14:56 The line out there now is Smith – Arnason – Svatos. Huh? Where's Hlinka?


13:00 Toews scores one of the most beautiful goals you'll ever see, deking the pants of Clark, Hannan, Theodore and an Avalanche forward. Just his 2nd of the year (and I'd assume of his career). It's a bit too reminiscent of the Phaneuf goal on Tuesday.

11:31 Hey, imagine that? Theodore has given up two goals already. An Avalanche turnover leads to a shot on Theodore. Theo stops it, but gives a meaty rebound up to Patrick Sharp. 2-0 Chicago. Does Martin LaPointe still play for the Blackhawks? If so, he's licking his chops right now.

5:24 Leopold joins the offensive rush…and turns the puck over, leading to a 2-on-1 in the other direction, Sharp and Kane. Kane scores beats Theodore over his glove, and the Blackhawks go up 3-0. Avs have been outscored 7-0 in the first period of the last 2 games.

4:08 Wyatt Smith shows his value on the 3rd line…by taking an offensive zone holding penalty.

2:13 Avs kill off the penalty, and look good doing it. With 5 seconds left, Stastny steals the puck from Kane, and Kane trips Stastny, giving the Avs another PP.

1:19 Chicago gets an oddman rush, and Arnason (!) gets back to take it away

:52 ANOTHER odd-man rush.

0:00 As time runs out, Laperriere fights Wisnieski – as usual, Lappy is dropping the gloves to try to jumpstart the team. Who is in the front row watching behind the glass? A priest. I'm not sure what type of omen that is.

2nd period

19:36 Big shocker – Wolski is out there with Stastny and Hejduk. Joel Quenneville needs to learn a word: patience.

18:12 Sakic, Brunette and Hlinka is the line now. That means Smyth will be with Arnason?

17:33 Scratch all that – Smyth has a broken skate blade.

16:48 A shot goes off of Khabibulin's shoulder and lands right on the goal line.

15:19 Smyth is back out there.

14:24 And he's back with his regular line. I’d take back the patience stuff…but Theo DID get the start tonight.

12:51 Skrastins made one of his patented sliding stops to block Patrick Sharp's shot. Unfortunately, he gets called for tripping on the play.

12:21 I heard the name "Samsonov" called for the first time tonight. I've seen Samsonov play a bunch of times in Boston, and it amazes me how much he's fallen; he used to be so talented.

11:22 Leopold takes a dumb penalty, boarding Jon Toews headfirst into the corner. Peter McNab tries to defend Leo, but that was a really stupid move. Also stupid? Patrick Kane sending a "message" to Leopold by skating into him after the whistle. Yeah, that should deter him next time, Patrick. Why not stick out your tongue and call him "stupid head" while you're at it. 5 on 3 for Chicago.

11:05 29 minutes into the game, and Theodore just made his 9th save of the night.

9:06 Stastny takes a puck off the skate, and is slow to get up and get off the ice.

7:08 Khabibulin is just awesome tonight. The Avs are getting chances, but just keep getting stoned.

4:39 Finally. Brunette dishes to Wolski in front, and Wolski beats Khabibulin – it's the 31st shot of the night, and just the 2nd road goal of the year. Chicago still leads 3-1.

1:15 I don' t mean to pick on Wyatt Smith, but isn't he supposed to be a good defensive forward? Toews just walked around him on the way to the net like Smith was bolted to the ice

:55 Theodore makes his best save of the night, and probably the season, making a sliding stop on a 3-on-1 Chicago break.

:05 Seabrook takes a swing at Stastny after the whistle, but Stastny ignores him. Also, they show the replay of the Theodore save…and it wasn't a save – the shooter missed the puck.

0:00 There's a minor scrum after the whistle. Avs have outscored their opponents 5-0 in the last 2 2nd periods.

3rd Period

19:20 Wow, Marek Svatos. Svatos starts the play, forcing a turnover just inside the Chicago blueline. The puck goes to Stastny along the boards. Stastny tries to center to Smyth in front of the net, but it goes off the skate of a Blackhawk in the middle and right to the stick of a streaking Svatos. Svatos moves in, skates horizontally in front of the net, picks up a screen from Ryan Smyth, and backhands a laser over Khabibulin's shoulder. His shot had to thread a tight needle – there was little space between Khabibulin and the post, but Svatos found it. 3-2 Chicago. Gorgeous play.

19:08 Right off the faceoff, there's a tripping call on Andrei Zyuzin

18:32 The Blackhawks get a chance shorthanded – Smyth breaks up the play coming back and sliding to the ice.

15:49 Hook on Laperriere. Too many 3rd period penalties from the Avs this year.

15:12 Guite checks the linesman. Good hit, but it won't count in the stats.

14:05 Robert Lang goes to the box for holding. Honestly, it looked like Clark just fell down on the play. Good break for the Avs.

13:35 Kevin Adams breaks in, but Liles makes a solid play to break it up. After Liles, Adams was all alone.

12:59 I don't think Hejduk has been on the ice yet this period.

12:25 Tied up. Sakic cross ice to Brunette, centered to Ryan Smyth – Smyth tips it in past Khabibulin. Two points here would be terrific.

10:00 Wolski breaks in one on one. He gets hooked…really should have been a penalty shot called.

9:02 It's confirmed that Hejduk is done for the night with the bad back. Remember, he missed the last game for the same reason. Hopefully this doesn't develop into a longer injury.

5:26 Brett Clark gets nabbed for holding. Did I mention the Avs are taking too many 3rd period penalties?

5:11 Lang stones Robert Lang. Would I be jinxing things to mention Theodore has yet to allow a PP goal this year?

3:25 Apparently not, although the Blackhawks just missed a chance right after Clark came out of the box.

1:25 Fuck me. Chicago scores past a sleeping Theodore. Lousy, lousy goal to give up after all that. Lousy, lousy goalie to have in net tonight. Sorry, Theodore aplogists.

1:09 During a Colorado timeout, Quenneville can be seen leaning hard on the surgically repaired right shoulder of Marek Svatos. Ease up, there, coach.

:59 Theo is pulled for the extra attacker

:47 Lang scores an empty netter. Sharp sets him up nicely. 5-3 Chicago. No more comeback.
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