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Colorado Avalanche

Avalanche Vs. Wild Preview: Catching Stars, No Trenin

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Avalanche Ross Colton nhl trade

If the Colorado Avalanche have any intention of catching the Dallas Stars for the top spot in the Central Division, a win on the road in Minnesota is essential.

With a dominant win over the Oilers last night, the Stars moved five points ahead of the Avalanche in the standings. Why does this game matter so much for Colorado? It’s their game in hand. A loss tonight would make a five point gap tough to overcome with just six games remaining, so they’ll have to be ready to go.

Justus Annunen is scheduled to start in net for Colorado, and Alexandar Georgiev will go tomorrow against the Edmonton Oilers. Make no mistake that Georgiev is still the starter on this team, but the schedule worked out where Annunen would start two of the three games on the road trip.

Valeri Nichushkin has been skating back in Denver, and skated again Thursday morning, but will not play against the Wild. The hope is that he can play against the Oilers, but that depends on how he feels. Yakov Trenin also will not play on Thursday, but he may play against the Oilers as well.

As always, the player to watch on the Wild is Kirill Kaprizov. He leads the Wild with 83 points and has been particularly deadly on the powerplay.

Expected Colorado Avalanche Lines 

Jonathan Drouin – Nathan MacKinnon – Mikko Rantanen

Brandon Duhaime – Casey Mittelstadt – Artturi Lehkonen

Miles Wood – Ross Colton – Zach Parise

Jean-Luc Foudy – – Chris Wagner – Andrew Cogliano

Defense

Devon Toews – Cale Makar

Samuel Girard – Josh Manson

Jack Johnson – Sean Walker

Starting Goaltender

Justus Annunen

Expected Minnesota Wild Lines

Kaprizov – Eriksson-Ek – Boldy

Johansson – Rossi – Zuccarello

Beckman – Khusnutdinov – Gaudreau

Shaw – Lucchini – Lettieri

Defense

Middleton – Faber

Brodin – Bogosian

Merrill – Chisholm

Starting Goaltender

Filip Gustavsson

Special Teams

Colorado Avalanche Power Play: 24.9%, 6th in NHL

Colorado Avalanche Penalty Kill: 82.4%, 6th in NHL

Minnesota Wild Power Play: 21.1%, 16th in NHL

Minnesota Wild Penalty Kill: 74.3%,29th in NHL

How to Watch

TV: ESPN+, Altitude TV

Radio: 950 AM

Game Time: 6:00 PM MST

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Ken

Malinski should be with the Avs right now. He and Jones should be in the lineup every night til end of season. Rotate the top 6 out each game. Should be rest time. Same should go for forwards. Even Mack and Mikko should be either taking 1 or 2 games off, or just being limited to under 15 minutes per game. Avs can hold 2nd no problem and assuming we have Val, a rested team can go far this year.

Brad Jacobs

Not until we guarantee ourselves second place and some home ice. In years past it hasn’t mattered, but this year’s team has been atrocious on the road.

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