Colorado Avalanche Player Grades, Game 2
Bowen Byram: B – Played smart again tonight. Incredible sliding saving to make up for coughing up the puck in his own zone.
Erik Johnson: C – He was involved again offensively tonight but nothing to show for it.
Devon Toews: C – Back to back nights with penalties. Not the norm for him and it’s proving costly right now.
Cale Makar : C – Fans were holding their breath as he looked injured at the end of the first but he came back out and finished the game. Led the team with five shots but that was really it from the star defensemen.
Andrew Cogliano: C – Good kill to start the third. Other than that, fairly quiet.
Valeri Nichushkin: C – Very questionable call tonight for crashing into Binnington. He was pretty much held then let go of right into him. That play led to what felt like the game changing goal.
Nicolas Aube-Kubel: C- – I liked his energy on a couple of shifts tonight but that’s about it. Almost 13 minutes played and no shots.
Nathan MacKinnon: C – Played hard, but couldn’t get the goal the team needed to keep them in it. And, like it or not, that’s a big part of his job. Blues did good job taking away his time and space.
J.T. Compher: D – Minus two tonight and had a few hits. Not much for the other lines. Not great with faceoffs going 2 for 6.
Josh Manson: C+ -Similar to game one, he played physical, but he also took some hits too, and was forced into some jittery moments with the puck.
Darren Helm: D – Had five hits in a little over eight minutes played. But that’s also because he rarely played with the puck.
Sam Girard: D – He was forcing passes through the neutral zone tonight. The Blues were all over them and transitioning quickly.
Artturi Lehkonen: C – Crazy he didn’t record a shot. He had six hits, but I felt like he was also getting pushed around a lot.
Nico Sturm : D – Couple of hits and that’s it. The depth play wasn’t there tonight.
Nazem Kadri : C- – It just wasn’t there for 91 tonight. The Avs need him to get going numbers- wise, though he did have a very good puck-possession Game 1. Only won 40% of his draws.
Gabe Landeskog : B- – Moved back to the first line with MacKinnon and Rantanen. Leave it to the Captain to get the crowd and team going but it still wasn’t enough to get the W.
Andre Burakovsky : D – His passing was off tonight like the rest of the team. He had a costly mistake that led to the Blues third goal of the game and essentially the back breaker.
Mikko Rantanen : C – Big games need their big players. I was hoping he would have shot it on the breakaway instead of passing. Like Kadri, the Avs need them to get going.
Darcy Kuemper : C – He didn’t get much help in the first two periods but then couldn’t make the save needed to keep the momentum and the score close. It’s hard to blame this game on him, but Binnington is certainly winning the goalie duel right now.