Avalanche Clinch Playoff Spot with Win Over Canucks - Colorado Avalanche Updates, News and Game Reviews at Avs Talk

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Avalanche Clinch Playoff Spot with Win Over Canucks

Wojtek Wolski scores the game winner as the Colorado Avalanche beat the Vancouver Canucks
(AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jonathan Hayward)
Breathe in deep folks. Smell that? That's the smell of playoff hockey. Yes, with a 4-2 come-from-behind victory over the Canucks tonight, the Avalanche will start a new playoff streak this year.

The only question left is which seed will they end up? They could go as high as #3 or as low as #7 so there's still some fun to be had. Unfortunately most of the fun will be had by other teams as the Avalanche are out of action until Sunday when they close out the regular season against the Wild.

And at the current moment, the Wild would be the Avalanche's playoff opponent. Is that better than the Sharks? I'm inclined to say yes though the Avs are 2-4-1 against the Wild this year. But hey, the playoffs are a whole new season so anything can happen!

Rough beginnings
The game got off to a rough start as the Canucks really had some jump in their game in the first couple minutes. I was actually on the edge of my seat in the early goings and was getting concerned that the Avalanche were going to have "one of those games"

Pessimisity turns to optimisity
My pessimism was rewarded as the Canucks built up a 2-0 lead by the 5:50 mark of the second period and things weren't looking good. Fortunately, the Avalanche powerplay miraculously came through to get the Avs within one. Then Milan Hejduk tied it up. Then Wojtek Wolski scored again. That's right, before you could blink the Avalanche had taken the lead. Well, if you didn't blink in the 5 minutes and 19 seconds it took, you might want to get that checked out.

I'm taking my puck and going home
At that point, the Canucks seemed to basically pack it in. The fans lost all their life and the team looked so frustrated I actually felt a little sorry for them. Just a little. The Canucks had a powerplay opportunity 20 seconds after the go-ahead goal and they really sleepskated through it and that pretty much emptied the arena of any atmosphere whatsoever.

Forsberg gets his first
In the third, Peter Forsberg was sprung on a breakaway by Andrew Brunette and he made absolutely no mistake as he roofed it past Luongo's glove. For his first goal of the season, he looked pretty relaxed. He also played over 20 minutes tonight so it's a good thing the Avalanche don't play again until Sunday. All kinds of time for that groin/foot to heal up again. Unless of course he lacerated his liver late in the game.

Theodore shuts the door in third
Jose Theodore put in what is becoming a standard Theodore performance. Look ok in the first, above average in the second and lights out in the third. He made some great in-close saves in the final minutes to preserve the two-goal lead and definitely helped the team get the win.

I didn't see the second goal and was too lazy to rewind but on the first goal, he got a piece of it but it looked like he was screened and/or the puck caught a deflection. I'll never blame a goalie for a screen or deflection goal. But I'll certainly hope like hell that they figure out a way to have that puck still hit them.

Foote takes one in the ear
Adam Foote caught a puck in the ear after Milan Hejduk tipped a Vancouver shoot in. He immediately hit the ice as blood started coming from what appeared to be his ear. It's never good when blood comes from your ear but in this case, it shouldn't be too serious. However Foote didn't return to the game after the incident.

Which way to the golf course?
Tonight was a rough hit to the Canucks playoff chances. Along with their loss to the Avalanche, the Nashville Predators leapfrogged them with their own come-from-behind win over the Blues. The Canucks now need some help from the Predators if they don't want to be hitting the links come April 7th.

Kharmic Aura
I'd like to give a big wave to a couple Canucks fans. I'm not sure what their names are but last year at GM place on April 5th they had some choice words for me after the Avalanche win. Well, karma is a bitch, isn't it? Maybe if you'd kept your mouth shut the Canucks would have got in this year. But you had to open your annoying mouth and cost your team a shot at the Cup. Well done.

Related Links
NHL.com Event Summary
TSN Recap
In the Cheap Seats Game Notes
ColoradoAvalanche.com Recap
Rocky Mountain Recap


geoff said...

I was at the game and I have to say it was a little sad watching the Canucks implode. The crowd was not into it at all. When I'm not cheering for the Avs the Canucks are my next favorite team, so the win was slightly bittersweet... slightly. Glad the Avs are back in the playoffs and it was awesome seeing Forsberg in action. Wasn't sure if he was going to play. Best case scenario: Avs take the division and Dallas finishes in 6th (this is going to require a lot of losing on Big D's part). If there's a goaltender the Avs own more than Luongo it's Turco. Especially in the playoffs.

Shane Giroux said...

Yeah, I definitely didn't feel superb listening to the Canucks building go silent and seeing the Canucks players all but toss up their hands and declare the season over. I'm not a Canucks fan but I also don't like to revel in other people's grief. Unless they're a Wings fan ;)

The division is going to be a tall order and unfortunately requires some specific variables from two teams. The Flames need to win against Minnesota and then lose against an imploding Vancouver team.

If that happens, then it's back in the Avalanche's hands to take out Minnesota. I'd be shocked if it happened but I'd be damn happy :)

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