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Game 59: Avalanche At Blackhawks, Preview And Open Thread

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And just like that, the Avalanche are out of the playoffs again.  Vancouver beat Edmonton last night moved up one spot in both the Northwest Division and the Western Conference, one point ahead of Colorado in both.

With the Avs barely clinging to their playoff hopes, each game becomes critically important to win.  Yes, you could say each game was a "must-win," if so inclined.

Unfortunately for the Avs, they face the Chicago Blackhawks today, who have found it much easier to "Commit To The Indian" since ace rookie Jonathan Toews returned to the lineup last week.  The 'Hawks have won their past two games by outscoring their opponents (Columbus and Nashville) 13-3.  Great.

Jose Theodore will return to the net today for the Avs after getting pulled against St. Louis on Thursday.  Joe Sakic and Paul Stastny are both skating now, but won't play in either today's game nor tomorrow's in Detroit.  Ryan Smyth will have to lead the team all by himself.

The early game starts at 11:00 AM Mountain Time, 1:00 PM Eastern.  I had originally planned to attend this game, but wasn't able to make it, unfortunately.  Such is life.

ESPN preview.