Joel Quenneville, who coached the Avalanche and Blues, used to say, “If you don’t score in a 5-on-3, you probably won’t win the hockey game.”
Even more so if you don’t score in a 6v3.
Unfortunately, the Avalanche didn’t quite deserve to win this otherwise entertaining hockey game. Despite a 5-on-3 power play advantage with just under two full minutes remaining – increased to 6-on-3 after the keeper was pulled – the Avalanche failed to equalize against Jordan Binnington. Ball Arena’s final was 3-2 Blues.
- The killer goal in that game was Brandon Saad’s when time ran out in the second half. A harmless looking shot was deflected off Cale Makar’s racquet and crept through to make it 2-1 with 1-01 left.
- Binnington made 45 saves in the win. He was the difference in the last analysis. He made a few freeway robbery saves.
- Alex Newhook was on the bench for most of the third half (until, oddly enough, he played a lot in the last two minutes) and Jared Bednar said: “He’s not playing the standard I set for him.”
- Newhook has three points in 14 games, a -4. He played well in those two wins in Finland but is back in Bednar’s kennel.
- “Too many fluctuations. Not skating and attacking,” Bednar added.
- I thought Andreas Englund was looking pretty good for a first game with the team after a recall from the Eagles. He played a total of 11 pretty solid minutes.
- Cale Makar: “I feel like we’ve done a lot of good things. We did everything right to win this game. Obviously a couple of unfortunate mistakes on my part and unfortunately my stick bounce off the net. Like I said, it’s hockey, so you’ll probably get her back eventually. Definitely for us [an] easy game to win. I feel like we did everything right, just couldn’t bring it out.”
- At 5 and 6 against 3, Evan Rodrigues said: “We just didn’t meet. We did everything we wanted. There were a few bouncing pucks, but they just didn’t hit it.”
- Mikko Rantanen also extended his points streak to five games, amassing 16 points (8g/8a) over that stretch. He has scored 20 points (9g/11a) in seven home competitions this season. Only four players in NHL history have scored 20 points in fewer games at home: Mario Lemieux (4 games 1988-89, 5 games 1995-96 & 6 games 1992-93), Wayne Gretzky (5 games 1986-87 & 6 games 1983-84), Pat LaFontaine (6 games 1992- 93) and Mike Bossy (6 games 1984-85).
- Rantanen’s shot on goal was a real beauty. Long wrist remote post, from the right side.
- Avs sent Sampo Ranta, Martin Kaut and Jayson Megna back to the Eagles. However, it could largely be one or more other cap moves.
- I thought Ryan O’Reilly had a great two-way game for the Blues.
- Sam Girard did not skate today but is scheduled to do so on Tuesday.