The Colorado Avalanche will be playing the Pittsburgh Penguins on prime time television tonight at 5PM MST. Finally a game regional Avalanche fans will be able to watch. The dark days are over (for tonight).
This matchup has the potential to be a great game to watch with two NHL Superstars in Nathan MacKinnon and Sidney Crosby set to take the ice. The two Nova Scotian boys front two very different teams but do so in similar fashion. With grit and an incessant need to win.
The Avalanche have gotten off to an incredible start this season sitting at (5-0). Despite the unbeaten record the boys in burgundy aren’t satisfied and claim their is much to improve on.
If I were a betting man I’d bet this will be the night MacKinnon scores his first four point game of the season. Mack seems to shine brightest when the spotlight is on and has a quite (but predominant) eight points through the first five games.
After watching the first five Avalanche games, I'm left with the impression that Nathan MacKinnon hasn't looked as dangerous as we're used to seeing. His offense seems to be lacking, so far he only has *checks notes* eight points— Tom Hunter (@PuckDontLie) October 15, 2019
It seems like Sakic’s plan to bolster the second line has paid off. Through five games they have contributed 12 points with Bura, Naz and The Don each scoring two goals.
Based on warmups, we’re going to have some lineup changes tonight. JT Compher is off the injured reserved list and will be on the third line with Tyson Jost and Colin Wilson.
On defense, Nikita Zadorov has been scratched in place for Mark Barberio. We can only assume this means Ian Cole is finally up to speed following his injury and will be with Cale Makar on the second pair.
Zadorov and Nishushkin scratched. Barberio and Compher in #Avs— Mike Chambers (@MikeChambers) October 16, 2019
Gabriel Landeskog - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen
Joonas Donskoi - Nazem Kadri - Andre Burakovsky
Colin Wilson - Tyson Jost - J.T. Compher
Matt Nieto - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - Matt Calvert
Samuel Girard - Erik Johnson
Cale Makar - Ian Cole
Mark Barberio - Ryan Graves
The Penguins are surviving with a less than experienced club. Crosby has performed but will be without line mate Evgeni Malkin for the fifth straight game.
Jake Guentzel - Sidney Crosby - Brandon Tanev
Dominik Kahun - Jared McCann - Patric Hornqvist
Zach Aston-Reese - Teddy Blueger - Dominik Simon
Adam Johnson - Joseph Blandisi - Sam Lafferty
Matt Dumoulin - Kris Letang
Marcus Pettersson - Justin Schultz
Jack Johnson - John Marino
The Avs will be going with Philipp Grubauer tonight. He is rocking a 4-0 record and a SV% of .925 so far and has made some key saves late in games. In fact he’s only given up one goal in the third period through his four starts.
Expect Pens tender Matt Murray to get his 6th straight start tonight. Murray hasn’t quite been the Stanley Cup champion goalie we are used to seeing. So far he has a SV% of .911 and is allowing 2.82 goals a game.
First goalie off is... Matt Murray.— Matt Vensel (@mattvensel) October 16, 2019