November 23, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Colorado Avalanche center John Mitchell (7) and defenseman Erik Johnson (6) celebrate with left wing Jamie McGinn (11) after scoring the game winning goal for the 1-0 victory against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

What We Learned: Avalanche - Kings

Some people need a ton of goals to be entertained. Me? Just give me some good back-and-forth action and a 1-0 game can be plenty.

That was more than the case on Saturday night. They were without Human Video Game ™ Matt Duchene and playing a pretty good Kings team featuring the red-hot Ben Scrivens. Scrivens had been filling in for Jonathan Quick and his awful muscle strain, nearly besting his franchise-record consecutive shutout streak.

Regardless of what happened, the Avalanche deserved the two points. It just would’ve been a real shame had they not won because they outplayed the Kings for two periods, winning over the judges and their fictional scorecards.

With all that said, let’s see wh

November 23, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Colorado Avalanche goalie Semyon Varlamov (1) blocks a shot against Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty (8) during the third period at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

at we learned from Saturday night’s 1-0 win.

Goalie Fight (But Not The Punchy Kind)

This was an outstanding effort not only by Scrivens but by Varly as well. Semyon Varlamov only faced 19 shots, but he made a couple of genuinely huge saves when the Kings tried to get some momentum on their side in the middle of the Avalanche onslaught that was the second and third periods.

With all the crap going on off the ice, it’s good for him to get the shutout, get the big win and give both himself and the team a huge amount of momentum. But maybe don’t celebrate with the sauce until this all blows over, eh champ?

As for Scrivens, I just wonder where this was when he was in Toronto. He always seemed like a decent goalie but the run he’s been on of late has been absolutely absurd. He definitely stole a point for the Kings and almost got a second. He made 32 saves on the night; several of them of the outstanding variety. The Kings wouldn’t have made it through the last five minutes of regulation without him.

Complete Effort

You hear stupid-sounding clichés all the time from coaches, but sometimes it turns out they are there for a reason. One of those? “Complete effort.”

The fact of the matter is that, while this was a 1-0 overtime game, the Avalanche could have run away with this against a lesser goaltender. Seriously, Scrivens turned in one of those performances that usually leads to destroyed controllers in NHL 14.

It’s obviously good that they walked away with the win because it would’ve been much harder to be happy with this kind of effort had they lost. The Avalanche should be pleased with themselves given the way they’ve played coming out of their three-game losing-streak, especially without the aforementioned Duchene.

Depth Is Key

The one prevailing theme that seems to emerge from most Avalanche games is that they are so deep offensively. They get goals from just about everyone and it could be anyone at any time.

Paul Stastny, arguably the most likely to end up on the trade block this season, has really had himself a fantastic first quarter of the season and could find himself too valuable to let go in the eyes of the Avalanche. He’s moved into second on the team with 17 poionts through 22 games and has really come on in the last half-dozen games or so.

The Avalanche have seven guys with double-digits in points, including Andre Benoit (balls) who is having a quietly productive year. Alex Tanguay would be with them if he wasn’t out with a knee injury for the time being.

If they want to go far this year and not just be a team that makes the playoffs after a bad year, they need to continue to get scoring from all over the roster. Easier said that done, but they’ve had a great first quarter as a group.

Next up: 11/27 vs St.Louis 

Ryan is the editor of Mile High Sticking as well as co-owner of The Farm Club. Follow him on Twitter to talk Avs, Sabres, hockey in general, or to let him know what a yutz he is.

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Tags: 2013-14 Season Ben Scrivens Colorado Avalanche Los Angeles Kings Matt Duchene NHL Paul Stastny Semyon Varlamov

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