Colorado Avalanche Hope to End 2017 on a High Note with a Home Win

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 06: Matt Nieto
DENVER, CO - JANUARY 06: Matt Nieto /

The Colorado Avalanche hope to end 2017 on a high note by beating the New York Islanders at home. They’re in the midst of a six-game home stand.

The Colorado Avalanche are hosting the New York Islanders for the last game of 2017. This is the second and final time the two teams will face each other.

Naturally, Colorado would like to end 2017 on a high note with a home win. Unsurprisingly, in the midst of their 48-point season, the Avalanche started out 2017 with a road loss, to the Vancouver Canucks. Interestingly, their first home game of the year was against the Islanders — a 2-1 overtime victory.

Colorado is coming off a thrilling 3-2 overtime win against the Toronto Maple Leafs after a sluggish showing that saw them lose to the Arizona Coyotes in regulation. The Islanders are coming off a 4-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets.

The Avalanche and Islanders faced each other in New York on November 5 in a high scoring game that saw the Avs fall 6-4. That will forever be remembered as the game that saw Matt Duchene get traded not just mid-game or mid-period, but mid-shift:

I still maintain that the shocked and dismayed look on Kyle Keefe’s face as reflected in the glass mirrors how we all felt.

How to Enjoy the Game

Game time: December 31, 6:00 pm MT
TV Networks: Altitude TV (Avs feed), MSG+ (Islesfeed)
Radio: Altitude Radio (AM 950)

After the game, there will be an indoor fireworks show. Even though I’ve seen pyro-heavy Rammstein indoors more than once, this seems like a scary idea. But then, there will be lots of ice around, so it’s probably just fine.

Rookie Out

It’s highly unlikely the Avalanche will trade a core player mid-game again, so at bare minimum the game should feature a lot fewer distractions — even with the indoor pyrotechnics.

Unfortunately, Colorado may have to do without its hero of the game from Friday night. J.T. Compher, who scored the overtime game winner, is day-to-day with an upper body injury. According to coach Jared Bednar, Compher got “banged up” sometime during regulation. Though he obviously finished the game, he’s apparently sore and in need of further evaluation.

Kerfoot’s Ker-Magic

Alexander Kerfoot had a single shot against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the last game, and he scored on that shot. Indeed, his shooting percentage is a ridiculous 31.3% right now. Of course, he’s only taken 32 shots in 34 games…

Last time the Avalanche faced the Islanders, Kerfoot showed a little ker-magic. He recorded three shots on goal and scored on two of them. Actually, it’s not clear if he scored on two or one of his three shots. In fact, for his first goal against New York, he was just trying to center a pass in front of the net:

So, being tired of scoring goal off his own butt, he decided to score one off an opponent’s butt. I’m not sure the kid can make a career out of such quirky goal, but I look forward to seeing him try.

But then, Kerfoot has hands on him, too. This one-timer goal is as pretty as they get:

Alas, with all the craziness of the night, even Kerfoot’s two-goal effort — naturally a career-first for the rookie — wasn’t enough to lift the Avs past the Isles.

Next: All About Compher's OT Winner

The game against the New York Islanders marks the midway point for the Colorado Avalanche’s season-high six-game home stand. On Tuesday they host the Central Division rival Winnipeg Jets.