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Colorado Avalanche Game Day: Looking to pull away from the pack

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The Avs seek another win at home against the low flying Ducks

NHL: Anaheim Ducks at Colorado Avalanche Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Avalanche: (21-8-4)
The Opponent: Anaheim Ducks (11-19-6)
Puck drop: 7:00 p.m. MT
Watch: ALT, PRIME, FS-SO
Listen: [Radio] Altitude 92.5, AM 950

After dropping the last game in OT to Vegas, the Avs will turn their attention to the Anaheim Ducks who are currently last in the Honda West division. This single game set will be critical for the Avalanche to pull ahead of the teams just behind them, & keep very close to the top of the West Division & top of the NHL standings. Ball Arena has been good to the Avs of late, so let’s hope they keep the home ice swagger going while the fans anxiously await their return to the stands.

Colorado Avalanche

Although the Avs missed out on the second point in OT last game, it is hard to blame them for the result (missed tripping penalty, broken stick). With that being said, the squad will need to take care of business against a Ducks team that is tied for second to last place in the entire league. Recently, it has been a few of the non household names that have been contributing for the Avalanche alongside the main contributors. Joonas Donskoi is playing some of his best hockey in the burgundy and blue, with 10 points in his last 8 games.

As the team regains their full roster, there are a few names that will be interesting to keep track of on the health front. Bowen Byram, who missed the last game is currently day-to-day and seems likely to miss tonight’s matchup. Matt Calvert has missed the last two games and unfortunately is week-to-week.

Forwards

Gabriel Landeskog - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen
Brandon Saad - Nazem Kadri - Andre Burakovsky
Valeri Nichushkin - Tyson Jost - Joonas Donskoi
LOC - P.E. Bellemare - JTC

Defense

Cale Makar - Devon Toews
Jacob Macdonald - Samuel Girard
Ryan Graves - Dan Renouf

Anaheim Ducks:

The Ducks are 3-7-0 in their last 10 games and are coming off a 3-2 OT win vs. the Blues last night. Although Anaheim is at the bottom of the standings, they did give the Avs a run for their money last meeting at Ball Arena on March 16th. The Ducks scored four goals in the first period to chase Hunter Miska out of the game. The Avs rebounded and won that game, but it shows that they can turn it on at any given time.

Rickard Rakell, the leading point producer for the Ducks, will miss tonight's game after taking a hard blind side hit last night in the game against the Blues. Hometown kid Troy Terry will return to Denver looking to continue to play well in his home state, as he has had some of his best games against the Avalanche.

Forwards

Max Comtois - Isaac Lundstrom - Danton Heinen
Trevor Zegras - Adam Henrique - Troy Terry
Derek Grant - Ryan Getzlaf - Max Jones
Sam Steel - Jakob Silfverberg - Nicolas Deslauriers

Defense

Cam Fowler - Jani Hakanpaa
Josh Manson - Kevin Shattenkirk
Andy Welinski - Jamie Drysdale

Goalies:

The Avalanche will once again start with Philipp Grubauer in net tonight, which may come as a surprise considering his work load recently and the opponent. Grubauer hasn’t lost in regulation since March 8th & is 8-0-1 in his last 9 appearances. Jonas Johansson will back up Grubauer for tonight.

The Ducks have had some issues in net as of lately with their #1 net-minder John Gibson day-to-day and questionable for tonight. Anthony Stolarz got the victory last night against the Blues and will likely serve as the backup to Ryan Miller for this evenings contest.

Avalanche:

Philipp Grubauer
Jonas Johansson

Ducks:

Ryan Miller
Anthony Stolarz