Cale Makar returned to the Colorado Avalanche lineup on Thursday night, but he was not happy with his game.
The six game winning streak for the Avalanche came to an end, as they blew a two goal lead to the Anaheim Ducks, who currently sit dead last in the Pacific Division. The third period was particularly ugly, and head coach Jared Bednar was not happy with the effort.
Read what Makar, newly acquired Matt Nieto, and Bednar had to say after the loss.
Makar on his own game in his return to the lineup:
For myself, I wanted to be a good addition to the lineup. I didn’t do my job tonight. Played brutal.
Makar on losing to another bottom tier team:
We just can’t be comfortable, regardless of the team.
Nieto on the last 24 hours:
I found out late last night I was going to be playing. I flew out early this morning. I was actually in Carolina. Yeah, kind of a long day. I was really happy to be out there with the team and get started right away.
Nieto on returning to a team with familiar faces:
It definitely helps. You have some familiar faces that I’ve played with before. All the staff is pretty much the same. There’s definitely a level of comfort coming back here. Unfortunate result tonight, but we’re looking to bounce back Saturday.
Bednar on the start:
I really liked our first two periods. If you pull the shift that they scored on where they got extended time, we had a couple of tired guys that didn’t get off the ice and they got extended. You pull that one shift out of the first two periods, I liked our first two periods a lot.
Bednar on the third period:
I did not like the start of our third. Too much standing around. The urgency and intensity to our game disappeared and then we fell behind. Still had some chances to tie the game up but we put ourselves in a bad spot.
Bednar on the mistakes in the third period:
To me, that was work based. Yeah, we made mental mistakes, but it was work based, for me. They outworked us for the first 10 minutes, they dialed it up. And we didn’t play with the same urgency, intensity, physicality that we needed to in order to win the hockey game.
Bednar on Sam Girard:
I thought he was great. I really like the intensity Sam’s playing with recently. His defending, he’s hard, he’s quick, he’s got a great stick. Tonight, he was involved offensively. Big difference maker for us tonight.
Bednar on Nieto’s return:
I liked him. He’s another one of those guys that relies on the structure of the game. He’s always going to do the right thing. He’s always kind of shown, if you give him a checking role, he can step into that. Very trusted guy. For me, you know where he’s going to be at all times because he’s right dialed in with our structure, even after missing a whole bunch of time with us.
Bednar on the work ethic in the third period:
I just don’t like getting outworked for stretches that cost you hockey games, and that’s what it was. Let’s call it what it is. The intensity that they came out in the start of the third period, what we had was not comparable. We’re too deep in the season now for that to happen.