The last time Colorado beat Los Angeles? You have to go back to November 23rd, 2013 when the Avs won a 1-0 overtime game at Staples Center. We went two entire calendar years going to sleep every night without a win over these guys! They are an exceptionally good team, but man. About time. Let's see how it happened.
1st Period: The Avalanche had two power plays and failed to score on both. The Kings had one power play and failed to score on that. Cody McLeod fought Andy Andreoff. There's your first period recap.
2nd Period: As opposed to the first 20, the middle 20 had some action and goal scoring. It started with the Avs' power play when Tyson Barrie blasted a slap shot from the middle of the blue line to put the Avs up 1-0. Matt Duchene and Blake Comeau set him up and got the apples.
A few minutes later, the Kings tied it up on their own power play after Semyon Varlamov flipped the puck into the upper deck of the Pepsi Center from behind his next. Just fifteen seconds with the man advantage was all Los Angeles needed. A beautiful sequence of passing between Tyler Toffoli, Anze Kopitar, Jake Muzzin led to Toffoli rocketing a puck past Varly. Not much the Avs could do with this one. Darn good hockey from the Kings.
The Avs deemed this tie lame, however, and got a 3 on 1 break a minute after the Kings' equalizer. Andres Martinsen elected to ignore his two fellow forwards in MacKinnon and Duchene that joined him on the break, leaving the puck for Tyson Barrie to tally his second goal of the night. It dribbled off the shoulder pad of LA goalie Jhonas Enroth, but snuck by the goal line and gave the Avs the lead going into the final period.
3rd Period: Beginning the third with a power play the Avs got at the end of the second, Matt Duchene deflected a Tyson Barrie slap shot within the first minute of the period to distance Colorado away from Los Angeles. Gabe Landeskog also assisted with Barrie on this goal... if there ever was a bad time for Duchene to score, as it ruined Tyson's hat trick.
The next few minutes or so consisted of some patented Avs turtling, but Varlamov stood tall and kept the score 3-1. The Avalanche got yet another power play with six minutes to play, however, and hockey history was made. Jarome Iginla scored his 600th career NHL goal via a failed pass to Duchene, which went off the back of a King's skate and into the wide open Los Angeles net. The entire Avalanche bench emptied out, each player coming out to shake the beautiful sniper hands of #12 as he cemented his spot as the nineteenth player to score 600 goals in the National Hockey League.
Mr. Fish's Three Sardines:
#3: Jarome Iginla: (See below)
#2: Semyon Varlamov: Varly rebounded quite nicely from a bad game on Saturday night against the Flames. Fantastic showing from the Avs goalie tonight, and something we'll need to see much more of in the future if we want to see the Avalanche playing games in late April and beyond.
#1: Tyson Barrie: Two goals and two assists when your team scores four goals for the night and wins always earns you the first star, in my view. Even if someone else scores his 600th career goal.
Mr. Fish's Three Flounders:
NONE! The world is sunshine and rainbows! Let's talk about Jarome for a minute.
I grew up watching hockey and seeing Jarome Iginla score goal after goal. He torched the Avs when he was with the Flames. He was such a pain in the neck. I did not like him as a player since the Avs seemed to do so badly against Calgary every time with him being the root of the cause. I came to especially find issues as a hockey fan with Iginla when he set up Sidney Crosby for the game-winning goal in the 2010 Olympics, breaking my American hockey heart. He then went to play for a team I hated. Besides the Wild and Red Wings, two obvious Colorado rivals, I have never liked the Boston Bruins. Mostly because Boston sports fans are the worst people on earth. When Montreal knocked Boston out of the playoffs two seasons ago and Iginla in the process, I felt no remorse for Jarome.
But then he came to Colorado the very next summer. It didn't take me long to realize how wrong I had been about Iginla for so long. He was the consummate professional, and watching him play every night made me realize just how good of a player he is. Through one and a half seasons of seeing him in burgundy and blue, I've become a huge fan of Iginla's and feel fortunate to see him play part of his career with the team my heart beats for. I sometimes look at Iginla's goals with Calgary against Colorado and smile now. I don't see a man hurting my team, I see one of the best damned players of my generation adding to what's been an extraordinary career.
Six hundred goals is an amazing accomplishment, and he's far from done. I would say if he stays healthy, 650 is probably a realistic target for #12. I just hope Iginla can finally get his name etched onto Lord Stanley before he hangs it up as a part of the Avalanche. He deserves it, and I thank him for helping the Colorado Avalanche as much as he has the last couple of seasons. It's an honor to watch you play, Jarome. Congratulations.