Hope everyone is heading for a nice, relaxing weekend. Weather is starting cool off – finally. Let’s do some Avalanche thoughts and observations, on the heels of last night’s 6-4 preseason win over the Minnesota Wild:
- No, Darcy Kuemper didn’t look great in his first game of any kind with the Avs. As always when it comes to preseason games – good thing it didn’t count. He faced 15 shots and allowed three goals. I’m not worried.
- Justus Annunen, though, did look pretty good. He stopped 19-of-20 shots and got the victory.
- Along with Erik Johnson, I thought the best player on the ice for the Avs was Nazem Kadri. In his first game since Game 2 of the first round against St. Louis, Nazem Kadri had a goal, two assists and won 6-of-8 faceoffs. Man, he would have made a big difference against Vegas. But what’s done is done.
- Martin Kaut? A disappointing first preseason game. He played only a little more than nine minutes, was a minus-1 and had no shots on net. He’s only going to get so many chances to impress Jared Bednar, or else it’s back to Loveland.
- J.T. Compher had a nice first preseason game, with two assists and a plus-3. Only 40 percent on his faceoffs, though. He has yet to crack the 50-percent mark in his career. Last season, he was 45.9 percent (216-for-471).
- The Avs scored three times, on eight shots, against old friend Andrew Hammond to get the come-from-behind win.
- While newcomer Mikhail Maltsev wasn’t too noticeable offensively, I thought his checking game was pretty good and he won 9-of-13 faceoffs (69 percent).
- Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen have yet to play in the preseason. Haven’t heard of anything wrong with them.
- Avs have allowed five power-play goals in the first two games. Not great.
- Avs put goalie Hunter Miska on waivers yesterday.
- We’re running a $20.21 sale for a full year of coverage here, in honor of the 2021-22 season (get it?). Hit that subscribe button above and put in the code word 2021 on a 12-month plan and the deal is yours – down from the usual $29.99.
- Avs took today off. They’ll return to practice in split sessions tomorrow, and their next game is Monday in Minnesota.
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