Danny Brieries It! Avalanche Pick Up First Win of the Season With Dramatic Late Goal


1. 70. 2. 103. Final

Wow, what a game in Boston today, and what a finish for the Colorado Avalanche! Daniel Briere scored with under one second remaining to put the Avalanche ahead, and secure the first win of the season, 2-1.

Reto Berra made his first start of the season for the Avalanche, and was outstanding in his debut. Berra turned aside 27 out of the 28 shots he faced in the matinee, and made a few timely saves of the ‘jump out of your seat’ variety to keep the Bruins off the board. The Bruins also threw their backup between the pipes today, and Niklas Svedberg played very well too. Svedberg faced 30 shots, and was only beaten twice, although that Briere goal with 0.5 seconds remaining will surely haunt him for the rest of the day. He made the initial save on a long Jan Hejda shot, but marinated a juicy rebound and threw it right in front of the net, allowing Briere to grill him. It was also Briere’s 300th NHL goal, quite a moment for the lad!

Both teams entered this game with major scoring slumps. The Bruins had gone 5 straight periods without scoring a goal, while the Avs had failed to score in the first six periods of the season. Both teams managed to break their streaks in the second period. Jamie McGinn proved that sometimes you just have to get some rubber on net, and scored the first Avalanche goal of the season on a chance from an awkward angle in the right slot. The goal ensured that the Avalanche wouldn’t be tying the 1930-31 Montreal Maroons as the most anemic season starters of all-time on this day. The Maroons were shutout 3 straight games to open that campaign.

The Bruins answered with a power play goal by Loui Eriksson to tie the game. The Avalanche had a strong second period overall, and really pushed the play throughout. A really positive sign for the Avalanche, as they took control of the 5-on-5 play, against one of the elite even strength teams in the NHL – in their building no less.

When asked about the early struggles for the Avalanche – “Maybe guys thought we had too much talent to work hard.” -Daniel Briere

Matt Duchene has been the best forward for the Avalanche this season, and picked up his first point of the year with an assist on the McGinn goal. This guy is 9 months pregnant, and is straight up due to have a huge game with the way he is playing. Yeah baby, you heard it here, Dutchy is about to catch fire and go on a nice little points streak.

The third period is where the more intriguing storylines hit. The Avalanche thought they had the go-ahead goal, and Dennis Everberg‘s first career NHL marker, but in a strange sequence of events the goal was disallowed. The play in question began with a Tyson Barrie shot from the point. Ryan O’Reilly deflected the shot down to the ice from in front of the net, with a stick motion beginning from by his head and finishing near his hip. It was difficult to see when exactly he made contact, but it appeared that it was below the crossbar. The puck then deflected off Dennis Everberg and danced its way across the goal-line. The ref immediately came in and immediately signaled goal.

However, you could then hear a cheer from the Boston crowd, because the officials conferred and reversed the on-ice call to no-goal. Nobody in stripes had a better view of the play than the guy who made the initial call, alas… nothing the Avalanche could do.

After the review, word came from Toronto that there wasn’t conclusive evidence to review the ‘modified original’ call on the ice, so the goal didn’t count. Really rough break for the Avalanche.

After the waved off goal, the Bruins made a strong push and really took control of the momentum. They put a lot of pressure on the Avalanche, but Reto put up the Berracade, and kept the game even.

In the final shift of the game, the Avalanche decided they weren’t playing for overtime. They wanted the win. Nathan MacKinnon had the shift of the afternoon for the Avs. The effort and aggressive mentality paid off. Jan Hejda took a shot from the point with mere seconds on the clock. Svedberg made the intial save, but Briere collected the rebound, and de-monkeyed the backs of the Avs with one flick of the wrists. Avalanche win!

There was a brief moment of ‘surely this came after the buzzer’ with how things have gone for the Avalanche up to this point, but a quick look at the replay showed that the goal was scored just in the nick of time. The Avalanche improve to 1-2 on the season, and head to Toronto for the second half of a back-to-back tomorrow night. The Bruins fall to 1-3 on the season, and now have as many goals in their past three games as the Avalanche do, a mere pair. The cardiac kids are back folks! Although one of the old guys was the hero today.