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Category: Colorado-Avalanche

The Boston Bruins Lost A Two Goal Lead And Zdeno Chara Injured

from Matt Porter of the Boston Globe,

No Zdeno Chara.

And no points.

That’s how the Bruins left here. After losing their captain for the final two periods on Wednesday, they squandered a two-goal lead and opened their four-game, nine-day road swing with a 6-3 defeat to the Avalanche....

But Chara, key to Boston’s strategy of of defending the opposing No. 1 line of Gabriel Landeskog, Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen, departed after nine shifts and 5:24 with an apparent left knee issue. The defenseman’s leg buckled as he hit former teammate Carl Soderberg with 1:07 left in the first period. He finished his shift, appearing to favor his leg for 27 seconds until DeBrusk took a Colorado turnover in for a goal that made it 2-1.

The Bruins called it a lower-body injury. A team spokesman said they would issue an update Thursday on Chara if appropriate. A scheduled practice and media availability in Dallas was canceled.

Coach Bruce Cassidy was unsure whether Chara. who walked out of the Pepsi Center with a slight limp, would be assessed before the Bruins’ date with the Stars on Friday, or be sent back home to Boston.

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Game highlights below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: zdeno+chara

The Ups And Downs With The Edmonton Oilers

from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,

It’s a fragile fan base here in Northern Alberta, and how could you possibly blame them?

A decade of playoff misses was followed by a 103-point season two years ago, and finally, some playoff success. But as fast as Taylor Hall could win a Hart Trophy — boom! Dysfunction returned with a vengeance last season.

You’ve heard about the hockey gods? Well, Edmonton has been home to the Hockey Grinch for some time now, so you’ll have to excuse folks for wondering — as Colorado issued Edmonton its fourth straight loss with a 4-1 walloping at Rogers Place — if this year’s Oilers team is turning into last year’s Oilers team, right before their very eyes.

“This is not like last year’s team,” declared Oilers defenceman Adam Larsson. “We still have a strong belief system in here. I don’t even want to compare it to last year.”

Yet, here we are again. An 8-2-1 run convinced fans here that their team was for real. And it still might be.

But now they’ve lost four straight, the latest a disinterested 4-1 beatdown in which the Oilers scarcely competed for the two points until the Avs, with a 4-0 lead, sat back in the third period.

continued

Game highlights are below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Hot Start For Mikko Rantanen

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

So it was little bit of a surprise Thursday, with the calendar flipped to November, that Colorado right winger Mikko Rantanen held the No. 1 spot (21 points), followed by Patrice Bergeron and Evgeny Malkin knotted at 19 points. Of the three, Malkin was the least surprising, because he has long been one of the league’s most electric, productive point-getters, ranking No. 4 in league scoring the last 10-plus seasons with 758 points.

Bergeron, as Bruins fans are well aware, doesn’t make points a priority, but he is front and center now with two sizzling wingers, Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak. Hub-centric hockey fans like to call it the hottest line in hockey, but that title, headed into weekend play, belonged to Rantanen and linemates Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog. As of Friday morning, they had combined for 55 points, a giant step better than Bergeron and Co. with 50.

Rantanen, 22, is a load, a strapping 6 feet 4 inches and around 230 pounds. He went home to Finland over the summer, after finishing No. 16 in league scoring last season (84 points) and worked deliberately on skating strength and balance, as well as conditioning. Effort rewarded. Unless the line’s dynamics change unexpectedly, he could remain in the hunt with the usual suspects for the scoring title.

The No. 10 pick in the 2015 draft, better known as the McDavid draft, Rantanen played all but nine games in 2015-16 at AHL San Antonio. He plugged right into the varsity lineup the following October and, with his hot start this season, has approached nearly a point per game ever since. Jack Eichel, the No. 2 pick in that draft, has averaged 0.86 points per game with Buffalo, and Rantanen 0.81 with the Avalanche. Toronto’s Mitch Marner, the No. 4 pick in that draft, has clicked at 0.85.

more plus other hockey topics...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikko+rantanen

Elias Pettersson’s Five Point Night Helps The Vancouver Canucks Defeat The Colorado Avalanche

from Iaian MacIntyre of Sportsnet,

The owner’s tweets were as boring as the game was spectacular.

Local owner Francesco Aquilini, who runs the Vancouver Canucks for his family, created a buzz Friday afternoon when he promised on Twitter to live-tweet that night’s game against the Colorado Avalanche.

This had the potential to be magnificent for the media, disastrous for his coach and general manager. But Aquilini, who wears his local roots and fandom with pride, offered mostly pre-planned statements and uncontentious observations that didn’t come close to upstaging one of the most entertaining games of the National Hockey League season.

“I don’t know, what was the score, 7-6?” Canuck rookie Elias Pettersson said. “If we score six goals a game, we should be able to win full-time.”

If the Canucks score six goals a game, Aquilini won’t have to do anything by pose for a statue to stand beside the franchise’s first Stanley Cup.

The Canucks are still a long way from that, but with Pettersson and Brock Boeser and Bo Horvat and others here and on their way to the NHL, at least there is hope.

And nobody had to tweet about hope Friday night for people on the West Coast to know it’s there.

Pettersson, still just a Swedish teenager, scored the tying goal with 36 seconds remaining in regulation time, then capped his five-point night with an assist on Derrick Pouliot’s overtime winner, which bounced between the post and Avalanche forward Gabriel Bourque before settling in the net as Vancouver won its third straight game and improved to 9-6-0.

continued

Game highlights are below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: elias+pettersson

A Huge Comeback By The Calgary Flames Over The Colorado Avalanche

from Wes Gilbertson at the Calgary Sun,

The building was already buzzing.

Juuso Valimaki provided an added jolt.

With the Calgary Flames still trailing by one in Thursday’s third period, the rookie defenceman delivered a game-changing play on a perfect pinch, crunching Colorado Avalanche forward Matt Calvert to disrupt a breakout at the offensive blue-line.

The puck popped to Flames superstar Johnny Gaudreau, who did what he does — plattered a purdy pass for a teammate.

And then free-agent addition James Neal did, finally, what he’s been doing for years — scored a turning-point type of goal.

Valimaki, though, made it happen, one of several key moments for the Flames en route to an epic comeback in Thursday’s 6-5 triumph over the Avalanche.

coninued

Below, watch the game highlights (the Flames scored five unanswered goals in the 3rd)...

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Video- Welcome Back Matt Duchene, You’re Welcome Colorado

That was quick.

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: matt+duchene

Boo Matt Duchene

from Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post,

If you love Matt Duchene, you will boo him when his skates touch the ice in Denver.

While wearing an Avalanche sweater from 2009-17, Duchene scored 178 goals and lost 348 regular-season games (not that we’re counting). The prodigal whiner returns Friday to the Pepsi Center for the first time since last November, when Dutchy got his wish and was traded to Ottawa.

“I’m sure some of our fans love him, some of them don’t,” Avs coach Jared Bednar said Thursday.

Duchene wanted out of Denver, baby. He broke up with us, remember?

And everybody in an Avalanche sweater is better off for it.

“I can’t speak for him. But for the guys in this dressing room, this team and this organization, I think we’ve taken some steps ahead,” Colorado captain Gabe Landeskog said.

If Avalanche fans miss Dutchy, they will boo him.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: matt+duchene

The Colorado Avalanche Drop A Tough 1-0 Game To The Tampa Bay Lightning

from Mike Chambers of the Denver Post,

The Avalanche was shutout at home Wednesday night because Tyson Jost was in stride.

Naturally.

Jost was ruled offside because his back foot/skate was hovering over the blue line, not skating over the frozen paint. His entire body didn’t cross the blue line before Nathan MacKinnon pushed the puck into the Tampa Bay’s zone, but the Avs’ ensuing goal by Gabe Landeskog didn’t count because Jost’s skate was above the blue line — and not on it....

The NHL needs to adjust its offside rule. Or get rid of it altogether and worry more about questionable plays that directly factor into goals. A hovering skate should never negate a good goal....

Said Landeskog: “Those calls go both ways. If it was the other way around, I would have wanted the same call. That’s not where the game was won or lost. They scored on their (third-period) power play and we didn’t score on ours. That’s the difference. We had enough chances to score.”

more

Game highlights below, the play in question starts at the :40 second mark.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Colorado Avalanche Finish A Successful Road Trip

from EJ Smith of the Denver Post,

Before heading to New York last week to play the Rangers, the Avalanche players’ message to one another was twofold.

They agreed they were a special team, and to prove it, they had to be better on the road.

After a 4-1 win against the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday night at the Wells Fargo Center, the Avalanche head home 3-0-1 on their first lengthy road trip this season and boast one of the NHL’s most dominant lines....

“It’s going to be important being better on the road,” Landeskog said. “You have to be a dominant home team, but you have to be at least .500 on the road. It was a big road trip, and we talked about it before this trip. It’s an exciting time to be a part of this team, and it’s an exciting time to go on the road to start the season.”...

Landeskog added to the line’s dominant numbers in the third period, scoring on a breakaway for his eighth goal of the season. Rantanen capped things off with an empty-netter near the end of the third period. He and his linemates combined for 23 points (13 goals) on the trip.

more

Watch the game highlights below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Nathan MacKinnon Has More Of His Game To Give

from Mike Chambers of the Denver Post,

Four games into the season and Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon already has five goals. His third-period breakaway goal Thursday was poetry in motion.

The reigning Hart Trophy runner-up as NHL MVP, however, has more to give.

“I think I can dominate more than I am,” MacKinnon told me after his two-goal performance Thursday in a 6-1 victory against the Sabres at KeyBank Center.

MacKinnon is tied for third in NHL goal-scoring, trailing Toronto teammates John Tavares (six) and Auston Matthews (nine), who both have played one more game. Don’t be surprised if MacKinnon, a right-shooting center, finishes with more goals than Matthews or Taveres, both lefties.

MacKinnon, indeed, can do better. And he will.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nathan+mackinnon

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

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