Maybe Joe Sacco should bring up more players in trade talks after what Jones accomplished Tuesday night at Pepsi Center. Tuesday night’s game was foreshadowed with an article from the Denver Post that stated Jones might be a player the Avs try to move at the trade deadline. After the game, talks may have simmered down just a bit.
Both teams that faced off at Pepsi Center were trying to right a 5-game losing streak. The ‘Hawks are in the middle of a treacherous road-trip and find themselves in a free-fall in the Western Conference standings. The Avalanche have found themselves playing some great hockey, but cannot seem to find the will to win late in games. On Tuesday night one team continued their ways while another found a way to finish.
The first period was a “feeling-out” period as both teams failed to find the back of the net. That all changed in the second period. The middle frame exploded out of the gate when Brent Seabrook blasted a shot from the right face-off dot past Giguere only 31 seconds into the period. This opened the floodgates.
The next goal came from the stick of Peter Mueller who capitalized on a turnover created by he and Ryan O’Reilly along the blue line of Chicago’s zone. The turnover led to a two-on-one scoring chance and ended with a beautiful saucer pass from O’Reilly to Mueller to even the game at 1.
The next goal came via another Blackhawk turnover. This time Chicago attempted a cross-ice pass that could not find its mark. Milan Hejduk scooped up the loose puck and carried it into Colorado’s offensive zone. While driving hard to the left side of the net, David Jones found a hole in Chicago’s zone and was wide open in front of the goalmouth. Hejduk put the pass right on Jones’ tape and Colorado now had a 2-1 lead with the 2 goals coming only 35 seconds apart from each other.
It took the Blackhawks a little over two minutes to even the game back up. Patrick Kane slipped behind the Avalanche defense while Patrick Sharp hit him with pinpoint accuracy and Giguere had no chance to stop the shot. Surprisingly, this ended the scoring spree, for now.
Whatever Joe Sacco told his team between frames must have been some speech because Colorado came out in the second and third period poised to score. This time it was Gabriel Landeskog who lit the lamp on yet another Blackhawk turnover. With another odd man rush Landy rang one off the crossbar over Ray Emery’s glove giving the Avs a 3-2 advantage with only 38 ticks gone in the third.
It was about this time Colorado fans began chewing off what was left of their nails because they have been down this road before. The Avalanche seem to get one goal leads early in the third period but end up on the losing end of the tilt. Tonight the Avalanche did something fans have been waiting for all season. Tonight the Avalanche finished a game.
With only eight minutes remaining in the third, David Jones pleaded his case as to why he needs to stay in Colorado. Jones turned on the afterburners and flew by the defense of Chicago and let a wicked wrist shot do its damage on Emery to pretty much seal the deal for the Avalanche. Kyle Quincey put the game out of reach scoring on an empty net, officially ending the Avalanche’s losing streak.
David Jones played like a man pleading for his life. In some instances this is true. If Jones really wants to stay an Av, then tonight’s performance proved his worth. This is what the Avalanche faithful were hoping to see from Jones all season. The Avalanche fans showed just how much they value him with their ovation to Jones after he was announced the game’s first star. Tonight’s performance probably bought Jones some more time in Denver, but if Jonesy wants to keep the burgundy and blue “A” on his chest for an extended period of time he will need to have a few more nights like tonight.
The Colorado now welcomes the Carolina Hurricanes into Pepsi Center on Friday. Now I am no meteorologist, but I think hurricanes lose their strength as they go across land don’t they? And last time I checked, Colorado is a landlocked state.
- (R) Jones COL
- (C) Stastny COL
- (L) Landeskog COL
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