The Colorado Avalanche lost Game 1 Tuesday night to the Seattle Kraken in a disappointing premiere of the 2023 Stanley Cup playoffs. For the first time since 2020, they lost Game 1 of a series and are down in a series for the first time since 2021.
Obviously, it’s a very new position for Colorado to find itself in.
Now, it’s a matter of how they recover and adapts moving forward. Seattle did an excellent job of watching the tape and doing exactly what they needed to do in their playoff debut. They cut down the Avs’ speed, put a ton of pressure on their forwards, and got great defense, especially in the net from Philipp Grubauer.
This is a 20-year-old staying with Nathan freaking MacKinnon. Beniers plays like he's got a decade of experience. #SeaKraken pic.twitter.com/TW3zGlbj1N— x - Davy Jones' Locker Room (@DavyJonesLR) April 19, 2023
Colorado’s players and staff mentioned in the locker room and press conferences a lack of execution. They did end up outshooting the Kraken 35-30 in the end, but early goals in all three periods by Seattle were all they needed and shut down the Avs.
There were plenty of disconnects, lost puck battles, turnovers, and rusty play with three players entering the lineup from injury: Cale Makar, Josh Manson, and Artturi Lehkonen. It wasn’t all pretty and certainly different from what Avs fans are used to seeing when opening the playoffs, let alone their cup defense.
But, the good thing is it’s only Game 1. There are still plenty of chances to rebound and recover. It’s far from over yet, no need to freak out yet or push the panic button. Colorado has been excellent on the road this year too, and in their cup run last year too, so look for Colorado to try and spoil the party in Seattle.
“There’s no reason to hit the panic button”#Avs pic.twitter.com/UNb2TCpmFE— Jesse Montano (@jessemontano_) April 19, 2023
Game 2 is Thursday night with the Avs looking to even it up before hitting the road. They won’t take what happened Tuesday night and won’t repeat it again. It’s part of the culture.
Colorado will win Game 2. Book it.