The Colorado Avalanche should expect to get some productions from their second-line winger, Joonas Donskoi.
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The Colorado Avalanche players continue to enjoy their ice time at Pepsi Center and other venues, for those who want to rent it themselves, as they get ready to return to play. The goal is to have the NHL playoffs this summer and award the Stanley Cup at the end of September.
Eight teams are guaranteed playoffs spots. The Avalanche finished the season two points behind the St. Louis Blues for Best in the West. They had a game in hand, but that’s all over now.
And it doesn’t exactly matter because the four Western Conference teams will play against each other in a round robin for playoff seeding. The Avalanche could win the first seed still.
One player the team might be looking to for production is winger Joonas Donskoi. He stayed in Denver during the NHL’s pause.
So, let’s see what the Avalanche might be able to expect from their relatively new acquisition.
Joonas Donskoi in Playoffs Past
The Avalanche picked Donskoi up in free agency last summer, signing him to a four-year deal. He had previously played four years with the San Jose Sharks.
In that time, he played an impressive 50 playoff games. Indeed, he was on the Sharks team that went to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2016. So, he’s got the playoff chops.
I wouldn’t say Donskoi is a big force in the playoffs necessarily — that wasn’t his role on a stacked Sharks team. However, in those 50 games, he recorded 9 goals and 12 assists for 21 points.
You might remember (*cough cough) that the Avalanche played the Sharks in last year’s playoffs. Well, Donskoi was part of that team. And, well, Donskoi scored a goal on the Avs — in Game 7 no less. It might have even been the game-winner.
We’re going to have to forgive him for that. He wears burgundy and blue now.
Joonas Donskoi Playoff Predictions
Donskoi played 65 games for Colorado this season, missing five with a head injury that looked so scary at the time. In any case, he recorded 33 points (16 goals, 17 assists) in those games.
Donskoi should expect to skate on the second line with Nazem Kadri as his center. That’s where he played most of the regular season.
Donskoi owes us a goal — a game-winner would be nice. The Sharks didn’t make the cut for even the play-in round, so any team will do. I’d expect him to earn three to five points in the playoffs.
What would you like to see from Joonas Donskoi in this year’s playoffs?