Sunday night in Edmonton was a big one for the Colorado Avalanche. The team snapped their five game losing streak with a 4-1 victory over the Oilers, but it also marked a couple of milestones for one of the leaders of the team.
The assist on Carl Soderberg’s goal near the end of the first period was a big one for Tyson Barrie. The helper marked Barrie’s 200th as an NHL defender. The 27-year old achieved the milestone after only 423 games played.
Barrie is only the third defenseman from the after Victor Hedman (284) and Nick Leddy (205) from the 2009 NHL Entry Draft to hit the milestone - Barrie, however, did it in significantly fewer games.
Though he wasn’t drafted until the third round, Barrie has developed into one of the best defenseman to come out of his draft class. He leads all 2009 drafted defenders with 0.62 points per game played.
2009 Drafted Defenders
|#64||Colorado Avalanche||Tyson Barrie (D)||423||62||200||262||0.619|
|#2||Tampa Bay Lightning||Victor Hedman (D)||636||85||284||369||0.580|
|#6||Phoenix Coyotes||Oliver Ekman Larsson (D)||592||104||197||301||0.508|
|#106||Anaheim Ducks||Sami Vatanen (D)||352||37||124||161||0.457|
|#16||Minnesota Wild||Nick Leddy (D)||594||56||205||261||0.439|
|#11||Nashville Predators||Ryan Ellis (D)||412||55||126||181||0.439|
|#55||Washington Capitals||Dmitri Orlov (D)||381||30||96||126||0.331|
|#102||Nashville Predators||Mattias Ekholm (D)||406||32||98||130||0.320|
|#94||Columbus Blue Jackets||David Savard (D)||424||33||96||129||0.304|
|#14||Florida Panthers||Dmitri Kulikov (D)||575||33||122||155||0.270|
Not only did Barrie hit the assist milestone last night, but he also pulled into a tie with Rob Black for third in Avalanche/Nordiques franchise history for all-time goals by a defenseman. With 62 career goals, Barrie now trails only John-Michael (68) and Sandis Ozolinsh (72) .
Barrie hit the mark midway through the second period when his put home a beautiful pass by Mikko Rantanen.
The goal was only Barrie’s first of the season as all the Avalanche defenders have had a hard time getting on the score sheet this season.
With only ten to go, it won’t be at all surprising if Barrie is able to surpass Liles at the top of the defender goal list before his contract with the Avalanche expires next season.
Barrie scores his first goal in the NHL back on February 18, 2013 against the Nashville Predators.
Tyson Barrie has been an incredibly polarizing figure on the Avs’ blueline since he broke into the league. There are many that see his defensive zone deficiencies and think it means he isn’t a good defender. The fact of the matter is that Barrie is one of the best offensive defenders of his generation and he has played an irreplaceable role in the Avalanche system.
For a team that plays a high-even game based around speed and transition, Barrie’s ability with his skates and with the puck on his stick hasn’t been matched until the acquisition of Sam Girard last November.
Last night was a game in which the Avalanche desperately needed their leadership group to step up, and Barrie did just that. In what was as close to a must-win game as you can get in November, Barrie had what was probably his best of the season. It was great to see him rewarded on the score sheet and in the record books.