Final Score: Boston Bruins – 2 Colorado Avalanche – 0
*For the first time all season, the Colorado Avalanche were shutout in a game. That’s pretty remarkable. It’s a shame that it had to happen, but better now than in the playoffs. Just goes to show how good the Avs have been this season and how good the Boston Bruins defense and goaltending was in this game.
*Bruins goaltender Chad Johnson was outstanding, especially in the first period when the Avs outshot the B’s 14-6. The Bruins defense tightened up after that, but he made some big saves in the first 20 minutes to keep his team in the game.
*Semyon Varlamov was very good as well. He was hung out to dry by his defense on the first goal and was beat by a perfect shot on the second goal. He made some huge saves in the third period to keep an Avs comeback alive.
*Once again, special teams were the difference. The Avalanche went 0-3 on the power play while the Bruins went 1-1.
*This marks 3 straight losses for the Avs can all of them can be partially attributed to a poor power play (0 for 7) and penalty kill (2 for 6).
*The Avs don’t play again again Tuesday. I hope they spend a lot of practice time working on the penalty kill. I still believe that Patrick Roy needs to change the forward units. Ryan O’Reilly, Matt Duchene, Max Talbot, and Gabriel Landeskog or Paul Stastny should be the four penalty killers. You have to use your best players in these situations and those are the Avs best defensive forwards.
*Along with working on the penalty kill, the team also needs to work on getting the puck out of the zone when they have the chance. They had 11 giveaways this game and it’s a problem that’s plagued them all year.
*Alex Tanguay’s loss on the penalty kill has been overlooked. Everyone knows what he brings to the team offensively, but he was used on the penalty kill to start the season, and aside from O’Reilly, is the Avs smartest defensive forward.
*Tyson Barrie played right wing again, this time on the third line with Max Talbot and Cody McLeod. That told me that Roy realized that Marc-Andre Cliche was in over his head on the third line and he needed to be back on the fourth line.
*Even though Barrie looks right at home on the wing, I can’t help but feel like the Avs miss something with him up front and not on the back end. Barrie is a special player because he’s a defenseman with great offensive instincts who causes havoc when he jumps up into the play. As a forward, he’s just another good player.
*Matt Duchene took a big hit from Zdeno Chara late in the second period and went to the bench shaken up. He returned for the third period, but definitely looked a little off. It seems like he’ll be fine though.
*Roy pulled Varlamov for the extra attacker with 5 minutes to go in the game. Up until that point, the Avs only had 2 shots on goal in the period. They finished the period with 7.
*The Chicago Blackhawks beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 to go up 3 points on the Avs for 2nd place in the division. It’s looking more and more like the Blackhawks will host the inevitable first round matchup.
Up Next: @ Nashville Predators on Tuesday
Tags: Colorado Avalanche