Colorado Avalanche can prove a lot in Game 5

The odds seem to be against the Colorado Avalanche vs the Dallas Stars, but they can prove a lot in Game 5 with a victory.
Dallas Stars v Colorado Avalanche - Game Four
Dallas Stars v Colorado Avalanche - Game Four / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages

The Colorado Avalanche have a big hole that they have to find a way to climb out of, as they trail the Dallas Stars 3-1 in the second round playoff series. In their third loss, on Monday night, they looked out of sorts. Nothing seemed to go right in their 5-1 loss.

They were without Valeri Nichushkin, who was hit with a six-month suspension earlier that day. First-line defenseman with Cale Makar, Devon Toews, was held out with an illness. The expectation is that he will be back for Game 5. I think that Toews is a solid leader and can help the team on and off the ice.

Nathan MacKinnon was not at his best on Game 4, but we all know that won't consistently be the case. Every player has an off game here and there. I think that it is just a matter of all players being on the same page as much as possible. The Avalanche had played quite a few games without Nichushkin over the last two seasons, and while he is one of the most important players on the team, they have the experience to get through this. They're going to have to, with Nichushkin not being eligible to come back until sometime next season.

Colorado has played from behind quite a lot this season and is near the top of the NHL in come from behind victories. I've not been a fan of the fact that they have had to come back so many times, but it is impressive that they were able to achieve this numerous times in 2023-24. I don't think it is sustainable, especially in the playoffs, but it should not be considered out of the question.

Jonathan Drouin returning from injury is a huge boost and while it didn't help yesterday, it's certainly possible that he will have a bigger impact in the next meeting.

It will be very difficult to hold off the Stars and win three in a row. It's not impossible, but unlikely. But if they can do it, they can do anything.