Despite being relentlessly out-played and significantly out-shot, the Colorado Avalanche managed to gain a point in the standings anyway by losing to the Anaheim Ducks 2-1 in overtime.
There's really only one player on the Avalanche worth talking about in this recap, so I won't waste time on anybody else, considering most of them played pretty badly. Only one guy was a bright, shiny star in a sea of crap.
That player, solely responsible for moving Colorado back into a tie for first place in the Northwest Division, is Peter Budaj. He stopped 36 out of 38 shots, while his team managed only 12 shots total, including just three in both the first and third periods. Budaj finished the game with a .946 save percentage. The fact that he was not named a star of the game (for what that's worth) is completely infuriating.
In his last four starts, Budaj is 3-0-1 with a .951 save percentage (122 shots, 6 goals). That's excellent, top-tier goaltending, any way you look at it.
Unfortunately, the Avalanche lost the game last night, and because of that, Budaj will likely not get the start on Friday against the Rangers in Denver. Despite all signs that he is the real deal and the bedrock of a team that often struggles to be consistently good everywhere else on the ice, Coach Joel Quenneville---if he follows his usual pattern---will bench Boots in favor of Jose Theodore.
And then it's pitchforks and torches time, people.
Stars of the Game:
- Ryan Getzlaf (0g, 0a)???
- Chris Pronger (1g, 0a)
- Mathieu Schneider (1g, 0a)