Game 71. Avs-Ducks. Landeskog Fights Flu, Wins Game in Overtime

Posted: March 12, 2012 in Avs vs. Anaheim Ducks, Game Thoughts

After not knowing if he was going to play in the morning, Gabriel Landeskog slapped home the winner to give the Avs two points.

I will keep it brief again tonight because I didn’t see the game, but the picture tonight goes to Kevin Porter who scored a goal on his birthday.

Lately the Avs have been getting off to strong starts and tonight was no different. Jamie McGinn wristed a shot past Jonas Hiller from the right faceoff dot to give the Avs the lead. It didn’t look like the best goal, and probably could have been stopped because Hiller was able to see the puck the whole time, but McGinn certainly picked his corner.

From looking at the box score, it appears that Varlamov was busy over the first 2 periods, facing 27 shots, and stopping the first 26. Francois Beauchemin was able to lift a puck past Varlamov with only 2 seconds left in the 2nd period. It had to be a huge punch to the gut for the Avs to go into the intermission tied after working so hard to maintain the lead.

But it looks like the Avs hung in there for the first half of the period, and then Porter put the Avs ahead with just under 7 minutes left. It was a perfect tip to the far post, and I can’t imagine Hiller had much of a chance.

I actually saw Anaheim’s late goal live, and it is safe to say that Varlamov had no chance. It was on the powerplay and the puck took an unexpected bounce to Selanne before Varlamov could react. The Avs seemed to really be hanging on by a thread towards the end of regulation, but loosened up once they got that first point.

In OT, it was Matt Hunwick who made a nice play to get the puck to Landeskog who was able to walk right into the slot, and slapped the puck over Hiller’s blocker and into the net. Another big win. And with only 22 possible points remaining for the Avs, each point is huge.

The Avs end the night in eighth place again, and while it still will be tough for them to make the playoffs, every night they finish it in playoffs means it is closer and closer to actually happening. The Avs will head east for a make or break 3 game road trip against the Sabres, Devils and Rangers. I would be happy with 4 points.

The Avs next game is Wednesday against the Sabres in Buffalo. The game stars at 5:30 p.m. Mountain time.


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