The Avalanche and the Jets are both came off victories in which they set season high SOG totals, 48 for the Avs and 42 for the Jets. Both teams were unable to replicate the feat in a game that saw the Jets outshoot the Avs, 28-23. Two first period goals by Jamie McGinn and Jet's captain Andrew Ladd drove the game to overtime, where Andrew Ladd capitalized on a weak backhand to send the Avs packing with nothing but a loser point.
The game starts off much like the Canucks game, with the Jets winning the opening faceoff and driving the play in the Avs zone. Varlamov was forced to make a big save on Blake Wheeler early on. After about 5 minutes of the Jets getting good zone time Duchene uses his speed to create a chance for Iginla out front. Their line looks hungry for the puck, and Duchene in particular looks like he wants to get the team going early.
Nathan Mackinnon tries taking the puck in 1v3 shortly after and is stopped at the blue line. It looks like the kid is trying too hard to live up to his expectations and it is forcing him to make bad plays. The play goes back the other way and Erik Johnson coughs up the puck behind the Avs net. It squeaks to the point for Zach Bogosian who puts a shot on net which Ladd was easily able to redirect behind Varly as he was left uncovered in front of the net. 1-0 Jets. The Avs seem to have forgotten about their play in the domination of the Nucks, and look very tentative and jumpy early on. It also doesn't help that every time Cliche is on the ice the avs are hemmed in their zone. Can he join Guenin in the press box yet please? Brad Stuart hits Bogosian in the open ice away from the puck for a blatant interference call to put the Avs on their first penalty kill of the game.
PK1- Winnepeg was unable to set up early in the penalty but about 30 seconds in Mark Scheifele got a great look out front off of a slap pass from the point. Varly was there to make a big save to keep the Avs within 1. Ladd gets another good opportunity and this time rings the puck off the post, allowing the Avs to clear and and the penalty to end with only 1 SOG.
Shortly after the penalty Johnson jumps up in the rush and sets up MacKinnon for a good chance out front. The Avs keep the momentum rolling as Duchene uses a burst of speed to try his patented "deke through the defender's stick and shoot" move unsuccessfully. MacKinnon showcases his quick feet and hands behind the Winnipeg net to try for a wraparound. A minute later Holden springs Talbot on a breakaway which is denied by Pavelec. Since the Avs are getting some great offensive chances it only makes sense for Roy to put out his fourth line so Cliche can swiftly end any Avalanche offense. On another note, Redmond seems to be getting lots of ice time with Holden and looks like a HUGE improvement over Guenin, so lets hope he can stick in the lineup. Duchene tries again to will the Avs to victory on a nice 3 on 2 rush with Tangs and Iggy which results in a good shot on net. Duchene then gets sticked in the face out front by Bogosian which causes a double minor for drawing blood.
PP1- I find it odd that Iginla takes draws on the powerplay so Duchene can start right from the half boards but it works this time with Duchene feeding the puck over to Barrie who lets a bomb fly on net. The ever hungry Fatty McGinn is there in the slot to pop in the scrumptious rebound. This leaves one more minor in the Bogosian penalty as the first period ends.
The period starts with a comical show of Barrie misplaying the puck and Tanguay falling down which almost resulted in a breakaway for the Jets. I still don't understand having Tanguay on the point on the powerplay where he is clearly uncomfortable. After a largely uneventful powerplay Hejda takes a tripping call and the Avs are back on the PK.
PK2- EJ makes a big block to send the puck the other way where Cliche gets a decent shot on net. Near the end of the PK Redmond makes a great stop on Ladd and takes the puck all the way down the ice to fire it on net. As the game goes on he is looking more and more comfortable out there. Tangs dumps the puck to end what was a great Avs PK.
The game really starts to open up offensively for the next few minutes with a few great chances each way and a couple great saves by Varly. His rebound control has been excellent today. The MacKinnon line is looking dangerous out there, it is only a matter of time before the goals start coming for them. Redmond makes his first brutal play on a turnover behind the Avs net which resulted in a shot on goal. In any case, he looks way better out there than Guenin, and has made several solid breakout passes. This is the point in the game where this "game management" Roy keeps talking about needs to come into play, the Avs need to start taking it to their opponents when they get momentum, rather than tossing out the fourth line to halt it entirely.
Iggy makes a nice feed to Duchene who is unable to capitalize on the 2 on 1 and is started to look frustrated. There were multiple times throughout the game that our bottom two lines got hemmed in our zone by the Jet's line of Byfuglien, Thonrburn, and Lowrie, all of whom are 6'5, and 220+ lbs. However it is nice seeing Johnson and Hejda back together as they really read off each other well. After a huge save by Varly, Byfuglien buries Barrie and then knocks over Mitchell who came to his aid before Stuart drove him into the boards. Mitchell somehow got a double minor in the scrum that ensued, putting the Avalanche back on the PK.
PK3- The Avs looked absolutely feeble throughout the PK and were barely able to touch the puck, let alone clear it. Luckily Halischuk takes a holding penalty shortly after which puts the Avs back on the PP.
PP2-A few missed passes and inability b y the Avs to set up ends the period.
The Avs start the period with 49 seconds of PP time, but that is largely wasted by the 2nd PP unit trying to set up. After the PP the Jet's really came on strong for a few minutes before Duchene carried the puck the other way, setting up Iginla for a bomb from the top of the circle. Deep in the Jet's zone Erik Johnson is thrown headfirst into the boards and is slow to get up, going to the dressing room shortly after getting to the bench. He did not return which bodes ill for the squad. Hopefully he is OK to play for the next game, and doesn't show any concussion symptoms.
The Avs third line is able to get some solid zone time to break up the Jet's momentum. Scheifele is able to make a great breakout pass and gets up the ice in a hurry to hit the post on an easy opportunity. The Jet's keep taking it to the Avalanche, hemming them in yet again with that big Byfuglien line. Scheifele makes a steal from Iggy in the corner and forces Varly to make a stellar point blank save. That kid has been all over the ice tonight creating plays. Barrie finally breaks it out and makes a great spin move around Byfuglien, making him look stupid as payback for the hit in the first. With some of Barrie's rushes I'm surprised he hasn't been made dual eligible as a forward in fantasy hockey yet! The Avs are showing some life late in the third as Landy steals the puck at the Jets blue line and fires it high. Scheifele (of course) is tripped and sends the Avs to the PK for the last 1:18 of the game.
PK4The Avs are able to hold off the Jet's PP and to make it into OT.
Fun fact- every game between the Avs and the Jets last year was decided by 1 goal, with 4 of them going to OT. The intensity from late in the third period carried over to the OT with a few great chances going each way but ultimately it was Andrew Ladd who scored his second goal of the evening with 24.3 seconds left on a crappy backhand that rolled up over Varly and in the back of the net.
The theme of the season continues: The Avalanche play a decent game but are unable to pull out the W by scoring a goal when it matters.
Tangs - Dutchy - Iggy
Landy - O'Reilly - MacK
Fatty - Mitchell - Talbot
McLeod - Briere - Cliche
Johnson - Hejda
Stuart - Barrie
MHH THREE STARS
1st Star: Matt Duchene - he got the assist on the McGinn goal, and as usual looked like a dominant force all night, creating turnovers and making plays.
2nd Star: Tyson Barrie - He played a really solid offensive game today accentuated by his assist on the McGinn goal. He really stepped up after Johnson was injured in the third and he was forced to play on the wrong side.
3rd Star: Ryan O'Reilly - Although his stat line may not have been amazing he was doing all the little things right, and had several great plays to break up the Jet's offense in the neutral zone.