The Colorado Avalanche need to collect points during their four-game home stand, the longest of the season so far.
The Colorado Avalanche embark on their longest home stand of the season so far. Going into the Dallas Stars game, they had spent more of their time on the road than at home. They’ve played 20 of 32 games on the road.
Do the math — that means they’ve only played 12 games at home going past the third-season mark. That’s the fewest of any team in the NHL.
Despite that fact, Colorado has a winning record and is still holding on to a third-seed berth in the tough Central Division. That winning record is because of some strong road play, which was an area of weakness for them last season.
Well, the Avalanche have always done best with some home cooking. Teams typically do well in their own barn because of the second change that allows coaches to make the matchups they want. There also tends to be the crowd factor — the team feeds off the home crowd.
In Colorado, you also have the addition of altitude. Granted, when you’re talking about elite athletes such as NHLers, fatigue due to thinner oxygen isn’t as big a factor as with laypeople. However, it could just give the Avs a slight edge.
Whatever the reason, Colorado can put themselves on more solid footing at a crucial point in the season — before the halfway mark, when playoff certainty starts to be clear for some teams. The Avs want to be one of those teams.
Let’s look what the keys to this home stand are.