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Game 26: Sharks 3, Avalanche 2

photo courtesy of David Zalubowski/AP

The Avs are on quite a roller coaster now.  Before it was just lose lose lose, but now it's progressed to win lose win lose, which is a step in the right direction, kind of.

Colorado didn't lose to San Jose last night 3-2 because they failed to play hard.  On the contrary, they played their asses off.  The Avs controlled the Sharks' zone for much of the game, and put a ton of quality shots on net, outshooting the Sharks 35-28.  Colorado showed hustle, determination and heart the entire 60 minutes of the game.

Unfortunately, Evgeni Nabokov was supernatural last night (despite our best efforts to distract him).  He made save after save after save.  Despite giving up two goals, including an early equalizer by Milan Hejduk that stripped the Sharks of their momentum in the first period, he made huge stops when they were needed most.  

In the other net, Jose Theodore wasn't terrible, and only a bizarre bouncing shot from Mike Grier was able to get past him in the third period.  The Sharks also took quality shots and Theo did a respectable job keeping the pucks out of the net.  It just wasn't enough, unfortunately.

Overall I was impressed by the Avalanche if not ultimately disappointed.  I'll save my breath and let the rest of you chime in with your thoughts and observations.

Oh, and in case nobody noticed, the Oilers are now just two points behind the Avs in the Northwest.  As usual, the division is stacking up to be the most competitive in the NHL.  Great.

Stars of the Game:

  1. Evgeni Nabokov (33sv, .943)
  1. Milan Hejduk (1g, 0a)
  1. Joe Thornton (0g, 2a)