The Colorado Avalanche have been in a bit of a free-fall lately. Losing both Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog from the first line has left some major offensive gaps, and no one has stepped up yet.
Coming into tonight, the Avs had lost their last four games, including 2-1 to the Dallas Stars on Friday. Tonight’s shot at redemption fell flat, as Dallas won 4-1.
The Stars wasted no time tonight. Jason Dickinson took the 1-0 lead just 19 seconds into the game. The Avs had the puck behind the goal, but the Stars took control and after a few passes, Dickinson put the puck between Philipp Grubauer’s legs.
Just a few seconds after the Avs successfully killed a penalty, the Stars doubled their lead. Grubauer stopped the first few shots, but somehow Radek Faksa got the puck on a rebound and put it in the air and it went into the top of the goal off of Grubauer to give the Stars a 2-0 lead less than six minutes into the game.
J.T. Compher cut the lead in half with 36 seconds remaining in the first period. Cale Makar sent the puck to Vladislav Kamenev who was playing in just his third game this season. Kamenev gave Compher the puck right between the two circles and Compher’s high shot went past Stars goalie Ben Bishop and into the back of the net.
In the first 20 minutes, Colorado recorded only five shots on goal, and were unable to convert on two power play attempts.
Halfway through the second period, the Stars doubled their lead. Dallas was on the power play, and after Grubauer stopped the first shot, Faska got the rebound before Colorado could clear it, and he pushed it past Grubauer’s left skate for his second goal of the night.
Colorado took 11 shots, and had three power plays, but were unable to muster any offense.
The Stars widened their lead early in the third period, and the Avs were unable to overcome the three goal deficit.
Once again, Grubauer saved a shot (one of the 34 saves he would make tonight), but the Avs clearing attempt was unsuccessful. The Stars took possession of the puck in the Avs zone, and after a few passes to get the puck up to the net, Corey Perry pokes the puck in off of a funny bounce.
The Avs recorded 21 shots on goal in the 3rd period to bring their game total to 37, only one fewer than the Stars 38, but were unable to follow through and create any offense in the final 40 minutes. They received eight power plays but did not score on any of them.
Colorado is off for the next two days before they come home to face the Nashville Predators at 7 p.m. on Thursday, which will be the first of a two game homestand, as Columbus comes on Saturday at 7 p.m.