In what is becoming somewhat of a tradition, the Colorado Avalanche faced the Boston Bruins on Columbus Day in Beantown. Another tradition is the Avalanche beating the Bruins in Boston, which the last time that didn't occur was in 1998. On the back of a 29 save Semyon Varlamov shutout, the streak lives on for another year in a 4-0 victory for the Avalanche.
Opening the scoring was Sven Andrighetto at 4:41 in the first period off of a nice feed from Mikko Rantanen. The puck bounced up off of Tuukka Rask's glove but still counts nonetheless. Then while doing great work on the penalty kill, Carl Soderberg created a two on one with JT Compher, who buried the puck for the second Avalanche score of the game at 13:22, one second before the penalty expired.
After a quiet second period, the Avalanche increased their lead for good measure in the third period with the first of two Nail Yakupov goals in a burgundy sweater. The first one at 6:07 when Rask wandered far outside of his net and Yakupov had an empty net to shoot at and made it count. Then with the goaltender pulled, Yakupov chased down a loose puck and was about to deposit it in another empty net when David Pastrnak pushed him and the net off its moorings. The officials huddled and declared that Yakupov was awarded his second goal of the day at 19:16.
Keys to the Game
In what was about as close to the ideal lineup with the roster and personnel at hand, the Avalanche put together by far their most solid effort in this nascent season. Although they were still out shot 29-23 and lost the possession battle, they were in control of most of the game, particularly in the third period while holding the lead. A glimpse of progress from a young squad.
The Avalanche surely would still like to cut down on the number of penalties they have been accruing but successfully killing off all four that were taken in this game is a victory as well. They can also hang their hat on the fact that the Avs have not given up an even strength goal yet. Combine the two to obviously see how the shutout was produced. If the squad can keep tightening their defense and get scoring up and down their lineup they'll have more days like today.
Nervous moments occurred when Nikita Zadorov blocked a shot with his hand in the third period and did not play for the balance of the game. However, it was reported by Adrian Dater that Zadorov escaped injury. Would be a shame to especially lose one of the young players in this development process.
The Avalanche head home with a respectable 2-1 record following thier first road trip for their home opener and a rematch with these Boston Bruins at 7:30pm on Wednesday, October 11th at the Pepsi Center in Denver.