Despite losing players to injury left and right, the Colorado Avalanche swept their two game home stand in commanding fashion, and are taking that momentum on the road. Tonight kicks off a five game road trip that includes stops in four Canadian cities and ends in Minnesota.
Tonights opponent, the Winnipeg Jets, are wrapping up a four game home stand where they won the last two games, including defeating Colorado nemesis the Dallas Stars 3-2 in overtime on Sunday. They will head to Florida to take on the Panthers on Wednesday.
The “You can’t spell Calder without Cale” mantra is still going strong. Makar was named the NHL’s third start of the week after his six-point performance in three games (three goals and three assists) last week. He ranks second on the team in points with 17, and only Nathan MacKinnon is ahead of him with 22. They are tied for the team lead with 13 assists each.
After suffering a violent hit to the head from Columbus Blue Jackets forward Nick Foligno, Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, was diagnosed with a concussion. Foligno received a three game suspension for the hit, for which he also received a game misconduct for on Saturday. He will travel with the team, but forward Logan O’Connor was recalled from the Colorado Eagles to take his place.
Additionally, defensemen Kevin Connauton was recalled from the Eagles as well. He could take the place of Nikita Zadorov who suffered a broken jaw after taking a puck to the face on Thursday against the Nashville Predators. He underwent several procedures over the last few days and posted a picture of himself showing stitches on his chin. He skated in a non-contact sweater on Monday morning.
Tyson Jost - Nathan MacKinnon - Joonas Donskoi
Andre Burakovsky - Nazem Kadri - J.T. Compher
Matt Nieto - Logan O’Connor - Matt Calvert
Valeri Nichushkin - Vladislav Kamenev - T.J Tynan
Samuel Girard - Erik Johnson
Ian Cole - Cale Makar
Ryan Graves - Kevin Connauton
Mark Scheifele leads the Jets in points with 17. He has two power play goals and two power play assists. Kyle Connor leads the team in shots with 65, but somehow has a minus-six rating on the season. Nikolaj Ehlers has one more point than Connor, but has only taken 58 shots. The offense is getting by, but is still quite inconsistent.
The Jets still have eight players on their roster who have not scores a goal yet this season. Six of those players have a negative +/- rating. Given the recent offensive outburst from the Avs, the Jets will likely have to put up a few goals if they hope to have a chance tonight.
Kyle Connor - Mark Scheifele - Patrik Laine
Nikolaj Ehlers - Blake Wheeler - Jack Roslovic
Andrew Copp - Adam Lowry - Mathieu Perreault
Joona Luoto - David Gustafsson - Logan Shaw
Josh Morrissey - Tucker Poolman
Dmitry Kulikov - Neal Pionk
Nathan Beaulieu - Luca Sbisa
Philipp Grubauer is likely going to miss his third game in a row. Pavel Francouz has started, and won, the last two games, so he could get the third straight start. Adam Werner is also still with the team and is a candidate in goal if Grubauer remains out for an extended period.
Connor Hellebuyck is 8-5 in 14 starts for the Jets so far this season. He brings a .933 save percentage into the game, along with an average of only 2.28 goals allowed per game.