Archive for the ‘Avs vs. Philadelphia Flyers’ Category

No one look now, but the Avs have won 6 in a row at Pepsi Center. They are 5 bad minutes of hockey away from beating the Sharks twice, and now the Flyers and Capitals. Those teams have a combined record of 53-32-8. Those are three playoff teams, and the Avs are holding their own.
JS Giguere just keeps winning games for the Avs. Tonight he held the league highest scoring offense to 2 goals. And it easily could/should have been 1.

Right now, I am seeing a completely different team than at any point in the year so far. They have confidence to win games, and they are playing a full 60 minutes. I no longer see a team that thinks they are going to lose when the other team scores first.

I was frustrated early in the game, when Landeskog took a high sticking penalty that resulted in a double minor, because that is the one penalty that should never happen. Keeping your stick down is not that hard, and it results in 4 minute penalties quite often.

The Flyers took advantage and scored late in the first to take the lead. I understand that the Flyers have a good powerplay, but Jan Hejda made a terrible play to allow the goal. He is standing right in front of the goal, and lets the puck go between his legs during the pass that lead to the goal. You have to stop that puck, and he barely moved. I have been very unimpressed with his play as an Av.

A growing trend throughout the game was the Avs having a 2-1 and not even getting a shot off. I believe they had 3, and not one resulted in a shot on goal. That is not acceptable. I understand they want to make a pass, but you have to get pucks on net, and why not shoot low to the far pad, so the rebound goes to the other player? I would be a lot more upset if the Avs didn’t win.

The Avs responded well in the second period. After a late goal in the first, sometimes a team can lose a lot of momentum, but the Avs stayed in the game, and Landeskog scored his fist goal at Pepsi Center at the 12:26 mark to tie the game.

The play was began with Erik Johnson making a great play down low, and getting the puck to Shane O’Brien at the point. O’Brien made a nice pass to Landeskog, who made a great play and held onto the puck rather than deflecting it on net. That was a heads up move by the 19 year old to realize how much time he had, and slipped it past Bryzgalov for the goal.

What seems to be a trend for the Avs lately is scoring in the last minute of a period, and tonight was no different. On a bit of a weird play, the puck found its way past Bryzgalov and gave the Avs the lead going into the third. I’m still not really sure how the puck went it, but however it happened, I’m sure Galiardi meant to do it.

Another trend for the Avs seems to be giving up late goals to send the game to overtime. It seems over the past week, every time the Avs are winning a close game, there is a mad scramble in front of the net, and only the other team knows where the puck is, and they find a way to score. If the Avs want to be a playoff team, this needs to end quickly. Imagine if the Avs had lost against the Sharks and now the Flyers in the shootout, after giving up very late goals, how you would feel about their recent play. The Avs need to learn how to close out games.

I thought the Avs would have no chance in the shootout, because Giguere is so slow laterally, but to be honestly, I just didn’t see the Avs scoring all three goals, which is exactly what they needed. Give a lot of credit to Duchene and Hejduk for constantly being forces in the shootout, but you can’t forget about O’Reilly tonight, who must have known the pressure was on him because Giguere had been awful on the first two attempts, and still got the job done with a sweet move.

I personally think Varlamov should start on Wednesday, but I can’t see Sacco doing it, because Giggy has played well these last two games. I will also be attending the Avs next two games, so posts might be coming up a little late.

The Avs next game is Wednesday against the St. Louis Blues at Pepsi Center. The game starts at 7:30 p.m. Mountain Time.