Colorado Avalanche Score 4 1/2 Goals to Beat the Blues

DENVER, CO - APRIL 07: Members of the Colorado Avalanche celebrate their win over the St Louis Blues at the Pepsi Center on April 7, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - APRIL 07: Members of the Colorado Avalanche celebrate their win over the St Louis Blues at the Pepsi Center on April 7, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /
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The Colorado Avalanche scored more goals than the Blues to secure a playoff berth. How many more is up for debate.

The Colorado Avalanche are in the Stanley Cup Playoffs! That fact makes my playoff bracket completely useless because I superstitiously can’t predict that the Avs are going to lose, so…

Anyway, the Avalanche beat the St. Louis Blues 5-2, a regulation win that means we get to watch the Avs get at least four more games this season.

Let’s looks a the four good goals (and celebration pile because it’s one of the best things on the internet right now) plus the makeup goal the NHL awarded the Avalanche.

The first goal came in the first period. The Avalanche players came out buzzing. The shots on goal didn’t exactly show it, but they were getting the prime scoring chances. Unfortunately, nothing was going in until… Sam “Ice in my Veins” Girard scored with less than a minute left:

Who knew the youngest rookie (19 years old) on a team full of rookies had that kind of slapper in him? That was Samuel Girard‘s fourth-ever NHL goal, and it was an important one.

Prior to tonight’s game,

Nathan MacKinnon

hadn’t scored a goal in nine games. We were all beginning to wonder if he was sick or injured — or both. Well, I don’t know if he was, but he got the third Avalanche goal of the game:

It was a four-on-four goal with

Tyson Jost

and

Vladimir Sobotka

in the box for rough-housing with each other.

Side note: The only player Matt Duchene has ever fought with is Sobotka. That tussle cements that Jost is my new Dutchy.

Anyway, that’s the Nathan MacKinnon we’ve all gotten used to. Boy, have we missed him. That was his 39th goal of the season — a career-high.

The Colorado Avalanche didn’t look their sharpest in the third period. It’s so hard for them to play with a lead. Luckily, Jonathan Bernier made some key saves to keep the team in the game.

Blues coach Mike Yeo pulled a Patrick Roy and yanked the goalie with over four minutes left in the game. Avs captain Gabriel Landeskog, who also hadn’t scored in nine games, capitalized on the empty net:

The goal came with just 3:23 left in the game, putting Colorado up 4-1. At that moment, even the most cynical Avs fans realized the Avalanche probably were going to win this thing and make the playoffs.

That’s certainly the thought the players had:

Shout out to Mikko Rantanen, hopping on to the pile like an awkward but adorable 5-year-old.

Though the Blues managed to score a second goal of the game, Mattew Nieto sealed their fate with just under 13 seconds to go:

So, that’s four of the five goals the Colorado Avalanche were credited with. Let’s get to the goal that I labeled as a half in the title.

I give a lot of hell to Tyson Barrie. He’s a polemic player. As Patrick Roy once compared him to Sandis Ozolinsh — Barrie is the type of defenseman that creates scoring chances on both ends of the ice.

Well, after a terrible outing in San Jose, Barrie came back with some very spirited play. And, as if to prove me wrong, he showed why he’s most effective on the power play:

That was goal #14, which is a career-high for Barrie.

However, technically, the goal probably shouldn’t have counted:

I’m going to guess the War Room in Toronto didn’t openly state it even to the referees, but this feels like it was a makeup call for that blown disallowed goal against the Blues back in October. That was the game-tying goal that would have all but guaranteed the Avs a loser point:

Related Story: Blown Call Costs Avs a Point

Finally, I’d like to say I was wrong. I was so sure it was going to take at least 97 points to make the playoffs, but the Avs clinched with 95.

In any case, the Colorado Avalanche are going to the playoffs! They’ll be facing the Nashville Predators. At the time of writing, dates haven’t been released yet. However, the Pepsi Center website has April 16, 17, 18 marked off as potential home games.