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Colorado Avalanche Game Day: Just Keep Climbing

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The Colorado Avalanche welcomes in the Los Angeles Kings as they look to continue padding their lead and march towards the President’s Trophy.

NHL: Los Angeles Kings at Colorado Avalanche Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado Avalanche - 30-9-4

Los Angeles Kings - 16-20-6

Puck Drop - 7:00pm MT

Watch – ESPN+, Altitude 2, KCOP-13

Listen - Altitude 92.5, AM 950 (RADIO)

Colorado Avalanche

The Colorado Avalanche return to Ball Arena for a quick two-game homestand against the visiting Los Angeles Kings. The hometown squad is 9-1-0 in their last ten contests and looks to continue their winning ways and continue separating themselves from the rest of the pack against a Kings squad that is still only six points out of the final playoff spot in the Honda West Division.

The Avs cancelled their morning skate this morning due to another positive test from yesterday’s round of COVID-19 team testing. As of right now, there is no indication of a game postponement as the LA Kings followed suit and cancelled their respective morning skate. The player/staff member has yet to be identified.

Avs coach Jared Bednar indicated earlier in the week that newly (re)acquired defenseman Patrik Nemeth might be available beginning this weekend, but there was no definitive indication that he would suit up for tonight’s game – the rear guard is nursing a minor injury. Forward Joonas Donskoi missed the team’s last game (a 4-3 victory over the St. Louis Blues) due to an illness (supposedly non-COVID related) so his status for tonight is still in question. Expect the same lineup as the previous game (pending further news re the positive COVID test).

Finally, Devan Dubnyk was on NHL Network yesterday discussing joining the Avalanche and also gave a bit of a recount of his exchange with and thoughts on St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington’s temper tantrum from a few weeks ago.

Projected Lines

Forwards

Gabriel Landeskog - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen

Carl Soderberg - Nazem Kadri - Andre Burakovsky

Brandon Saad – Tyson Jost - Valeri Nichushkin

Liam O’Brien - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare – JT Compher

Defense

Devon Toews – Samuel Girard

Ryan Graves – Cale Makar

Jacob Macdonald – Conor Timmins

Goaltenders

Devan Dubnyk (Starter)

Jonas Johansson

Los Angeles Kings

The Los Angeles Kings come into tonight’s contest limping – they’ve lost two straight and are nursing a 3-7-0 record in their last ten. However, despite recent struggles the team is still only six points out of the final playoff spot in the division and with 14 games left to play, there is still plenty of runway left in the season to make a push.

The Kings are starting to look more and more youthful as they traded away long-time forward Jeff Carter to the Pittsburgh Penguins at the deadline (LA received two conditional draft picks in exchange for Carter – one 2022 third-round pick and on 2023 fourth-round selection). The veteran power forward was one of only four remaining players on the LA roster from their championship seasons in 2012 and 2014 (Dustin Brown, Anze Kopitar, Jonathan Quick).

Projected Lines (from Jewels from the Crown)

Forwards

Alex Iafallo — Anze Kopitar — Dustin Brown

Adrian Kempe — Jaret Anderson-Dolan — Trevor Moore

Andreas Athanasiou — Blake Lizotte —Carl Grundstrom

Brendan Lemieux — Gabriel Vilardi — Austin Wagner

Defense

Mikey Anderson — Drew Doughty

Christian Wolanin — Sean Walker

Olli Määttä — Kale Clague

Goaltenders

Jonathan Quick (Starter)

Calvin Petersen