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Game 33: Avalanche At Kings, Preview And Open Thread

Let me start by apologizing for my recent absenteeism.  Failing to post the game threads for the last two games is inexcusable, and purely a result of poor time management.  I've been busy lately, no doubt, but I still had time to take care of the blog and didn't do so.  Again, very sorry.

Now, as for the Avalanche, there's a lot going on.

They start another two-game road trip (last week was Columbus and Nashville) tonight against the Kings in Los Angeles and then head to Anaheim to face the Ducks on Wednesday before coming back to Denver for an extended home stand.

The Kings, as always, suck something awful.  The Avalanche, on the other hand, have been playing pretty well, especially some guy named Peter Budaj, who had two superb games against Nashville on last Thursday and Saturday nights.  He is expected to start again tonight in L.A.

As for the rest of the team, some injuries have healed while others are new.  Ian Laperriere and Jordan Leopold are back in the lineup, even though I probably just jinxed Leoprone to another wrist injury just by mentioning his name.  Not in the lineup will be Joe Sakic, whose Super Groin must really be damaged, considering that he's missed eight games.  Also hurt, and worse than earlier reported, is Kurt Sauer, who is showing concussion symptoms despite the team claiming a "neck injury" for days.  Brad Richardson is out with a sore shoulder.  And, to the relief of some, Tyler Arnason will be out for four weeks after surgery on a Leoprone-esque fractured wrist.  The full injury report is here.

Would-be power forward Cody McLeod has been called up from Lake Erie to fill the open spot on the offensive roster for the Avalanche, but no telling which line he'll end up on.  

Roster topics aside, the Avalanche now have their second two-game winning streak in the past five games, and will look to extend it against two weaker Pacific Division teams in the Kings and Ducks.  But, both games are on the road, and lord knows the Avs suck horribly on the road.

Maybe they'll turn it around?  Who knows?

No promises on me showing up for the game thread, but it's not like I'm really needed anymore.  Thanks again to all the participants who have kept the past few threads going in my absence.  It's hugely appreciated!  

The game starts tonight at 8:30 PM Mountain time, 10:30 PM Eastern.

ESPN preview.