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Thoughts and Observations from Avs win over Rangers



David Zalubowski/AP

Just like the game against Florida the other night, this game against the Rangers made for a lively, fun building – and happy customers on the way out. That’s eight wins in a row now at home for the Avs. The crazy thing is: the Avs are only two points out of fourth place in the Central Divison, and only in third place as it is.

But the Avs have three games in hand on St. Louis, which has one more point, and two games in hand on Minnesota, which has three more points. Tomorrow’s Avs opponent – Nashville – has just one fewer point than the Avs, but Colorado has two games in hand on them too. Translation: the Avs need to keep winning.

Tomorrow’s game, by the way, is still on, despite a Covid outbreak with the Predators. I talked to someone from the league, and it’s game on – as of now, at least.

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About last night…

  • I still can’t believe that goal by J.T. Compher was disallowed by Toronto, for goalie interference. Alexandar Georgiev came out of his crease and, to me anyway, initiated contact with Compher, who was just playing the puck after hitting the post with his first shot. Compher’s leg/hip area slightly grazed Georgiev’s mask. But, again, he didn’t initiate the contact. Yet, he gets the goal taken away. That disallowed goal almost cost the Avs the game, as a 4-1 lead was negated, the Rangers made it 3-2 and, if not for a big left pad save by Darcy Kuemper on Chris Krieder, the game would have been tied up in the final minute.
  • It sure seemed like the referees gave Rangers coach Gerard Gallant an awfully long time to make up his mind if he wanted to challenge the play.
  • Nathan MacKinnon: he’s had at least a point in all eight games since coming back from injury. He’s got his legs back underneath him, and blowing by everyone again. That setup pass he made on Mikko Rantanen’s goal in the first period was Exhibit A. MacK still is going for the Reverse Cy Young, with three goals and umpteen assists, but he’ll score goals again.
  • Cale Makar, with 13 goals, has, statistically anyway, a shot at the all-time NHL record for goals in a season (48), set by Paul Coffey in 1985-86.
  • Makar on his torrid pace: “I guess the pucks just seem to be going in right now. I don’t anticipate it continuing throughout the year, it’s a little bit of a heavy pace right now. It seems cliché but a lot of credit goes back to guys moving the puck well and then creating lanes for everybody, especially even the goal that I scored tonight. Comph is just in front of the net, that doesn’t go in if he’s not there.”
  • Say what you want about fighting in hockey, but Kurtis MacDermid’s win over Ryan Reaves really fired up his team, and I thought made a difference in the game. Exhibit A:

  • Nazem Kadri (3a) returned to the lineup and recorded his 12th multi-point game of the season. It was the sixth time this season that Kadri has recorded three or more points. Only Alex Ovechkin (6), Connor McDavid (6) and Leon Draisaitl (9) have just as many or more 3+ point performances this year. Kadri ranks fourth in the league with 37 points and second with 26 assists.
  • I thought Justin Barron played well in his 9-plus minutes of ice time. Nothing fancy, just meat-and-potatoes, effective hockey. Just like Nathan MacKinnon told him: “I just told him to keep it simple, have fun like everyone else. He’s from Halifax, I skate with him in the summer, great guy, works really hard and really nice kid. I thought he played great tonight. I’m not sure what his minutes were, but you know he kept it solid. I think he was a big part of Val’s first goal and it’s great to have another good D-man on our team.”
  • Jared Bednar said Pavel Francouz will start a game very soon. He didn’t say anything about tomorrow night, but maybe it’ll be in Nashville.
  • Bo Byram still isn’t skating. He’s been around the team, working out in the gym at least.
  • On his 92.5 radio show today, Jared Bednar said Gabe Landeskog is “doing very well.” Sounds like he has a shot at playing some time next week.
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Adrian Dater - Kiss and Larry Bird fan. Writer with @Gambling and @Bookies, Avs Insider with 104.3 The Fan. Denver Post, SI, Bleacher Report alum, author of seven books.

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Yes – the goaltender interference ruling was a bad call. The Ranger’s goalie clearly initiated contact. Good game by Kadri but I thought he was a little nonchalant on the empty net attempt. Val was awesome. And having a big dog around for protection is a good thing. For the first time, the Avs had a player besides Landeskog who fights and more importantly, has the physical stature to back it up. Reaves sure stayed away from MacDermid’s thunderous right hand. MacDermid made the club last night. Not in a literal sense. But as an important part of the team… Read more »

Bob Neal

Spot on. MacDermid is making this team play confidently and not worrying they will get bushwhacked by the other teams goons. MacDermid won the fight in my opinion, but that’s irrelevant as all he needed to do was not get clubbed. I received Yan’s response but not yours in do you still trade for MAF with Kuemper playing like he is? First time this season I’ve thought they have a pretty good shot at the Cup playing as they did the last two games.


Conflicted. MAF is still the better choice with his playoff experience. But the cost? I definitely think Kuemper is better than Grubauer. Darcy made some incredible saves last night and was very calm in the net. Having Frankie back will help a lot. Like I said – conflicted. Let’s see how it goes until the trade deadline. And for the first time – I see no need to be active at the trade line, sans a possible MAF acquisition, as the Avs have the depth to go a long way in the playoffs. Gotta keep Girard. That will make Yan… Read more »


I think, come deadline, the market is going to be hot for Flowers. The price and the competition to get him is going to be outrageous. I don’t fully trust Kuemper or Francouz at this point but we will likely need to simply because of economics and supply chain issues…

Yan Girard

I don’t think that the price will be very high. There isn’t much teams who are both contender and don’t have a very good goalie number one. In more, Fleury will choose no doubts if he wants to be traded and if yes he will choose the team with which he wants to play. Pittsburgh, Edmonton, Colorado could maybe be on the list of Fleury. I expect that the price is prospect, first round pick and/or conditional pick according to the course in playoffs or the potential signing at the next summer for example.

Brian Levesque

Looking more and more that the Preds game will be canceled as they now have 6 players and some coaches in covid protocol

Jared Moss

Kinda sad don’t you think… especially with all these teams going into covid freefall but hey let’s play a team with 6 players already out and probably more to come.. seems legit we gotta make money right… pathetic if you ask me ( don’t get me wrong I wanna watch the game obviously but what if colorado Is next for 5 plus people going out… will you be happy this game was played

Last edited 9 months ago by Jared Moss

sure, but you can also make the argument that a team can have as many players out with injury and the game will still be on. This isn’t a Flames situation. But you never know.

i think the league needs to tell the player “home, rink, that’s it.” Or else there’s a chance the whole thing gets bubbled or postponed.

Brian Levesque

Great thanks AD

Joel Stefaniak

“Bigger Mac’s” fight might be the turning point of the season for this team. It felt like they knew the days of being pushed around are over. When they beat up Vegas or Dallas in the playoffs this year it’ll be because of this moment. Everyone truly looks like they belong.

Karl Keen

Bigger Mac will not be on the ice in the playoffs. Fights rarely happen. I’m waiting to see on their playoff toughness, but it was nice to see some lately.


I guess if you play for Colorado, all you have to do is look at a goalie too hard to get called for interference.

Meanwhile, Johnson takes a puck off Stutzle in front of our own net and “runs” him into Yoyo, knocks the goal off the moorings and it somehow gets called a goal… even when the puck was never shot…

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