Colorado Avalanche Must Start Road Trip with a Bang v Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA, PA - FEBRUARY 28: Gabriel Landeskog
PHILADELPHIA, PA - FEBRUARY 28: Gabriel Landeskog /

The Colorado Avalanche need to start their four-game, two-week road trip off with a win against the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Colorado Avalanche have embarked on a road trip back East — quite far East, in fact, as they’ll leap-frog from New York to Sweden for their two Global Series games against the Ottawa Senators.

Before then, the Avalanche have their third set of back-to-back games, facing first the Philadelphia Flyers and then the New York Islanders.

The Colorado Avalanche and Philadelphia Flyers have faced each other 31 times since the Quebec Nordiques moved to Denver. In that time the Avalanche have enjoyed an edge, going 16-9-2-4(ties). The goal differential has been minute, though — just two goals in Colorado’s favor.

The Flyers took both games against the Avalanche last season with a score of 4-3 in December and 4-0 in February.

An interesting statistic is that of the 11 times the two teams have gone into extra hockey, the Flyers have only prevailed twice. Colorado took five games (one in a shootout), and the other four resulted in ties back when that was a thing.

How to Enjoy the Game

Game time: November, 5:00 pm MT
TV Networks: Altitude 2 (Avs feed), NBCSP (Flyers feed)
Radio: Altitude Radio (AM 950)

Matt Duchene and Nathan MacKinnon

colorado avalanche
DALLAS, TX – FEBRUARY 27: Matt Duchene /

These two players need to be the two best players on the ice. The are the cornerstones of their respective lines.

MacKinnon had a sleepy start to his season, recording only five points — and only one of them a (flukey) goal — in 10 games. He then came out flying against the Chicago Blackhaws, earning two goals and an assist. Against the Carolina Hurricanes, he recorded two assists — and was flying again.

Duchene is the opposite. He had a hot start to his season, recording three goals and three assists in the first six games. He’s since been relegated to a couple assists and no points at all in the last three games. Before we start calling this a goal drought or scoring slump, Duchene needs to sink the puck in the back of the net.

Maintaining Focus

More from Mile High Sticking

The Colorado Avalanche are heading off on an exciting road trip to Sweden which will be a lot of fun for players and fans alike.

That’s not what the team can be focusing on right now. They need to corral their excitement until after the game against the New York Islanders. Take it one game, one period, one shift at a time if that’s what it takes.

That’s going to be hard to do. Many of these players have competed internationally, but many have not. None of them have participated in a Global Series game like this — heck, the majority of them didn’t even participate in the Stadium Series game with the Avs a couple seasons ago. Plus, you know, they’re young.

Stolen Draft Pick

The Philadelphia Flyers stole the Colorado Avalanche’s draft pick. The Flyers finished with 40 more points than the Avalanche last year and were #19 in the NHL — they were in playoff contention up until the last couple weeks of the season.

Then, because of the vagaries of the draft lottery, they received the second-overall pick. They used it to select Nolan Patrick. No way should they have had such a high draft pick.

Patrick has played nine games for the Flyers, recording a goal and two assists. However, he was injured in a game against the Anaheim Ducks and has since been put on injured reserve. He won’t be playing against the Avalanche.

Still, that draft pick — and that player — should have been ours.

Next: Avs 3rd Line Producing for the Team

The Colorado Avalanche will face the Philadelphia Flyers one more time, at home on March 28.