The last time the Colorado Avalanche and San Jose Sharks met up, it was a bloodbath. That loss kickstarted a nine game losing streak for the Sharks.
Give them credit, though, because they’ve bounced back to win three straight games. The Avalanche will have to be ready to take down a Sharks team that has added some youth to their lineup after the deadline. With a win, the Avalanche will clinch a playoff spot.
For the Avalanche, all eyes will be on Mikko Rantanen. He’s just one goal away from becoming the first Avalanche skater to hit the 50 goal mark since Milan Hejduk in 2002-03. He’s got seven games to do it, but he might be feeling it coming off a pretty nice empty net goal against Dallas.
The lineup the Avalanche will be running with will be a little different. According to Marc Moser, Kurtis MacDermid and Ben Meyers will both step into the lineup. Bednar did not say this morning who they would be replacing, but it looks like Cale Makar was not present at morning skate. He’s missed the last few practices for “maintenance.” Up front, Nathan MacKinnon has missed the last few practices, but he was present at morning skate. Darren Helm is someone the staff said they may monitor down the stretch so that he feels healthy for the playoffs.
We won’t have confirmation on who his coming out of the lineup until closer to game time.
Expect Alexandar Georgiev in net for Colorado.
Expected Colorado Avalanche Lines
Valeri Nichushkin – Nathan MacKinnon – Mikko Rantanen
Alex Newhook – J.T. Compher – Evan Rodrigues
Andrew Cogliano – Darren Helm – Logan O’Connor
Matt Nieto – Lars Eller – Denis Malgin
(Ben Meyers will replace one forward)
Devon Toews – Cale Makar
Bowen Byram – Samuel Girard
Jack Johnson – Erik Johnson
(Kurtis MacDermid will replace a defenseman)
Expected San Jose Sharks Lines, per DailyFaceoff.com
Peterson – Hertl – Labanc
Bordeleau – Couture – Gushchin
Gregor – Sturm – Zetterlund
Criscuolo – Lorentz – Svechnikov
Vlasic – Karlsson
Ferraro – MacDonald
Semek – Thrun
Colorado Avalanche Power Play: 25.3%, 3rd in NHL
Colorado Avalanche Penalty Kill: 79.3%, 16th in NHL
San Jose Sharks Power Play: 18.2%, 26th in NHL
San Jose Sharks Penalty Kill: 82.8%, 4th in NHL
How to Watch
TV: ESPN+, Attitude TV
Radio: Altitude Sports Radio 92.5
Game Time: 8:30 PM MST