After Game 4 was postponed at the request of the players Friday night, the Colorado Avalanche and Dallas Stars will be back on the ice to continue their best of seven series this evening. The Avalanche will be looking to win their second in a row and tie their second round series - forcing a best two out of three later this week.
After being scrutinized for taking the ice Wednesday night - a decision that many players have expressed regret for - the Avalanche and the rest of the NHL players forced the hockey world’s attention to more important issues in the world. Hockey is back on the ice but the past few days have forced a conversation that needed to happen. And hopefully with the help of the Hockey Diversity Alliance, we can start to see tangible change in the sport and the world at large.
If you fall into the group of people who think the players strikes shouldn’t have happened that that for some reason you are owed your “sports as a distraction, remember the words of MLB pitcher Sean Doolittle:
“Sports are like a reward for a functioning society.”
Coach Bednar mentioned yesterday that he does not expect any of his injured players back in the lineup for Game 4.
The team finally got some scoring from players outside of the top line in Game 3 - that will have to continue if they want to tie the series up today. Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen have been great but the help is necessary to beat a team like Dallas.
Gabriel Landeskog - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen
Andre Burakovsky - Nazem Kadri - Valeri Nichushkin
Tyson Jost - JT Compher - Vladislav Namestnikov
Matt Nieto - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - Logan O’Connor
Ryan Graves - Cale Makar
Samuel Girard - Ian Cole
Kevin Connauton - Nikita Zadorov
While the player strike forced the hockey world’s attention to other (much more important) things, Defending Big D’s Managing Editor Taylor Baird wrote a great article explaining why the refrain: “we need sports as a distraction” is exactly why the game cancellations were a necessity.
Projected Lines from Last Game
Jamie Benn - Tyler Seguin - Alexander Radulov
Mattias Janmark - Joe Pavelski - Denis Gurianov
Andrew Cogliano - Radek Faksa - Blake Comeau
Roope Hintz - Jason Dickinson - Corey Perry
Esa Lindell - John Klingberg
Jamie Oleksiak - Miro Heiskanen
Andrej Sekera - Taylor Fedun