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Recap: Avalanche 4, Ducks 1

Two days after JS Giguere called out the team's work ethic, they responded with one of their best games of the season.

Jeff Gross

I decided to try a slightly different format tonight. Let's see how this works.

1st Period

20:00 - Before the puck even dropped, I saw Sacco smiling and giggling. He can do that?! I'm kinda curious what Quinn was whispering to him and why he had a piece of paper between his mouth and the players. Hm....

18:56 - WHAT THE WHAT?!?!?! WE SCORED FIRST? Seriously, who is this team and can they stick around for a while? A Matt Duchene rebound came right to John Mitchell who was standing just below the circle. He roofed it top shelf in what McNab dubbed a "Goal scorer's goal". It's his 10th of the season, and no one even had to hit him in the face to make it happen! Impressive!

17:33 - Corey Perry robbed by J.S. Giguere. Very dramatic 'looking to the rafters' ensues.

13:43 - Perry slashed Erik Johnson and goes to the box to feel shame. Time for an Avs "power" play!

11:43 - A baby seal has perished. 1 SOG on the power play by Duchene. Johnson had one shot go wide and Hunwick had one blocked, but the real news is that there were actually TWO defensemen on our second unit AND one (Barrie) on our first! Craziness!

7:02 - Zanon looks slow even when chasing down icings. Why did we sign him again?

6:25 - Duchene, however, is NOT slow. Hot damn. He's so much fun to watch when he gets a fast break rush. I almost feel bad for anyone trying to defend him. Almost.

3:40 - Obviously the three California teams have only lost a combined 10 times out of 60 home games this year. Looks like our chances tonight are fairly slim tonight. Still, we're the ones up by a goal. Not that it helped us last game, but we've played decent so far.

2:44 - McGinn's stick just got slapped high into the air by Perry right in front of the Duck's net and a ref. Was there a call? No, but it was kinda fun to watch. Serious hang time with some style points thrown in as a bonus. Quite nice.

1:43 - Gabriel Landeskog went for a steal takeaway but ended up holding Etem instead. To the box he goes. This would be a fun time to remind everyone that we have the worst road PK in the league (but the best at home!)

0:00 - A bit of pushing and shoving at the end of the period, but the Avs managed to kill off all but :18 of the penalty before the buzzer. That was a good first period. Clearly, Giguere needs to rip this team more often.

Second Period

19:43 - COL penalty has been killed. We allowed 2 SOG.

17:33 - Johnson gets a 2-minute minor for holding Palmeri. More chances to fail at killing penalties!

15:53 - SCORE!?! LANDESKOG! Short-handed goal! Beautiful breakaway with a nice little power move to the net. Getzlaf tried to defend Landy and utterly failed. Our Captain wins. Zanon got an assist. It was wonderful.

14:05 - Van Der Guilk gets thrown to the ice by Sbisa. The Italian heads to the box for interference. We'll take it!

12:06 - DUCHENE ON A ONE-TIMER?! WOW! He came into the circle and unleashed a beautiful slapper with a super-quick release. There was :02 left on the power play, so the Avs now have a Mario Lemieux hat trick!

11:52 - Haynes brought up the Giguere comments. Oh dear, I hope he doesn't get fired! Those opinions aren't exactly approved of by his employers.

10:35 - Hunwick tackled Perry into the net, but didn't take a penalty. Smart play by him.

9:50 - Zanon! Don't turn the puck over behind our net, especially when Jiggy is standing next to you! (grumblegrumblegrumble) During the TV time-out, they talked about it. Hopefully it doesn't happen again... although we all know it will. I mean, it's Zanon.

8:44 - ANA Goal for... wait for it... Teemu Selanne. Palmeri sent a bullet of a pass to him from the point, and Selanne stuck it past Jiggy near the weak-side post. Pretty goal, but it does kill Jiggy's shutout. It's also good to know that the curse of the Ex-Avs is as healthy as ever. Winnik's now due.

7:28 - Jiggy seriously robs Bobby Ryan. I think the momentum has shifted a bit after that goal.

5:27 - Patrick Bordeleau delivers a strong hit to Sheldon Souray, who then turned around with some shoves and crosschecks in return. No penalties were called on the play, but Souray obviously doesn't understand that if you try to punch Bordeleau, you're going to have a bad time.

4:42 - Stastny off for hooking. Time for some PK'ing!

2:42 - We just killed that without any SOGs. That's like unheard of on the road! We aren't at the Pepsi Center, right?

2:30 - AVALANCHE GOAL!!!! Jamie McGinn must have been hungry tonight! Van Der Gulik with a great defensive play that caused a turnover that came right to Ginner. In it goes, 4-1 Avs!

0:00 - The crowd is booing the Ducks right now. Apart from a couple minute time-frame after that goal, the Avs have dominated this contest. It's amazing what happens when the team actually has their head in the game.

0:00 - Visibly relieved Matt Duchene for the interview. He worked on that shot just yesterday and yes, I'd say it paid off. If he can add that into the arsenal, maybe having him on the point of a power play isn't such a bad idea after all.

Third Period

20:00 - Why, hello there, Viktor Fasth. So nice of you to join this party.

16:42 - It's been since 2008 that we've had a shorty, power play, and even-strength goal all in one period. Yeah, it's been a while.

14:40 - Avs have had a nice couple shifts. The ice is tilted our way a little, but it's just some solid back-and-forth hockey right now.

13:30 - David Jones sighting! This is the first time I've noticed him tonight. This is not surprising.

11:03 - Jan Hejda had a big hit against Matthew Lombardi. The Ducks were not amused, but no penalties were called.

10:40 - Giguere with a save against Winnik. The Curse of the Ex-Avs is still trying to go 2-for-2 tonight.

9:30 - Bit of a collision between Giguere and Perry down around the net. I'm not sure who pulled down who. Jiggy may not have been a totally innocent party in this one - he still has some fight in him!

7:18 - McNab just said something about the "fragile nature" of the team over the past month and how much they deflated after the first goal against. That almost sounded like a criticism.

5:42 - Sami camera time! McNab really struggled with "Aittokallio"... Haynes did not. If he does play tomorrow, I'd put the over-under on number of different pronunciations from McNab at 3.

3:17 - Duchene has re-entered beast mode. Two very nice shots and moves on that shift. He's really been skating and creating chances all game.

0:19 - This has become the Matt Duchene show. He's everywhere!

0:00 - There's a big Bordy grin as he celebrates with Jiggy. You can tell this is a relieved team. There wasn't any major celebrations, but there were smiles... which is something we've not seen in a while. It was a nice change.

MHH Best Three Avs of the Night

  • Duchene (1G, 1A, and 8 SOG.... yes, EIGHT)
  • Landeskog (Short-handed game-winner)
  • Giguere (The team's response to his comments alone made him worthy of a star, but he also had a good 21-save night)


Mitchell - Duchene - Parenteau
McGinn - Stastny - Jones
McLeod - O`Reilly - Landeskog
van der Gulik - Olver - Malone

Johnson - Hunwick
Hejda - Elliott
Zanon - Barrie


Scratches: Shane O'Brien, Chuck Kobasew, Aaron Palushaj, Milan Hejduk, Mark Olver & Semyon Varlamov.

Quick Hits

  • It's amazing what happens when the team isn't thinking about Las Vegas. This is the club we were hoping to get at the beginning of the season.
  • Duchene cranked it up another notch. I didn't know he had more to give, but holy cow, he was solid tonight. The last 4 minutes of the game belonged to him.
  • Giguere was very, very solid and the defense in front of him was respectable. Even the forwards chipped in tonight.
  • Anaheim didn't play a great game, but the Avs took advantage of their opportunities. This is the first time in a while that we've played a full 6o minutes.
  • We're still 30th, but I'd much rather watch more games like this than Tank it for Jones. This was a very welcome change to all the doom and gloom of late. More wins please!

Next Up

Tomorrow. Los Angeles. 8:30 MT. Yes.