Two of nature’s most destructive forces collide in Denver on Friday night at Pepsi Center. But unlike watching the actual natural disasters do battle, this contest should be fairly one-sided. Since the game takes place in the Rocky Mountains at 5,280 feet above sea level only one natural disaster reigns supreme, an Avalanche.
Coming off a dominating win from Tuesday, the Avs look to continue with their winning ways tonight against the visiting Carolina Hurricanes. Colorado definitely capitalized on an opportunity to overpower a road worn Chicago team three nights ago. Looking crisp and converting on stolen turnovers, the Avalanche put up 5 goals with ease.
Most of the success Colorado felt on Tuesday came from the ever talked about David Jones. It was only one day prior that Jonesy’s name was the center of trade talks from the Avs. Boy, did Jones ever have something for his critics to say about his performance on Wednesday morning. His 2 goals, 2 shots and plus 2 rating propelled the Avalanche to a 5-2 win and snapped a 5 game losing streak.
With the worst record in the Eastern Conference, the ‘Canes are not as bad as they appear on paper. Clearly this season the East is where the beasts are. The Avs are sitting at #12 in the West with 57 points. With a win Friday Colorado could leapfrog 3 other teams and sit in 9th place. Carolina, even though they are dead last in their conference, has 50 points so far.
The matchup Friday night could be a deadly trap for the Avs and head coach Joe Sacco knows it.
“We have to make sure we have the same mindset, the same focus, regardless of who we’re playing,” Sacco said after today’s practice. “It seems that when we play those teams — the Chicagos, the Vancouvers or teams that we consider elite teams in the league or our conference — we tend to play, I don’t want to say different, but a little bit harder. We have to have that same mindset, regardless of who we’re playing.”-via DenverPost.com Feb. 9, 2012
The Avalanche, plain and simple, cannot play down to the level of the team they are facing. While playing Vancouver and Chicago, the Avs had some pretty high intensity and played like a real contender. With Carolina coming to town, Colorado needs to keep up their intensity to show that they can finish a game on a consistent basis. If the Avalanche can get an early lead tonight, they should be able to sustain it and ultimately defeat Carolina and continue to pursue that all elusive playoff spot.
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