Dater: Avs better bring work boots into Game 3, or it’ll be ‘let’s go again’ time
Well I would say don’t panic though. …yeah, it’s OK to freak out a bit. The Colorado Avalanche are now in a best-of-five series with the St. Louis Blues, and the Blues now have home-court advantage. A flat work ethic allowed the Blues to fill the void with more heart and excitement in their 4-1 win at Ball Arena.
The only loss isn’t what would freak me out the most (a bit), though. It’s the fact that the Blues have a hot goaltender in former Cup winner Jordan Binnington, and the Avalanche have a goaltender, Darcy Kuemper, that has seemed nervous in the first two games.
But this loss wasn’t on just one guy. It was on just about every guy who wore burgundy and blue. The Avs just allowed the Blues to outplay them pretty much the entire game.
“We were bad. We were really bad tonight,” said Nathan MacKinnon. “We just didn’t get our jump tonight. But we still feel like a great team. You have to forget about it and move on. »
Av’s top guys just didn’t bring tonight, and Kuemper – although it’s hard to blame him too, too much for the first two goals he allowed – he just seemed, yes, nervous in the game. So far Binnington has been better than him, and now the pressure is really on to show he can be a playoff goalie.
Mikko Rantanen had another frustratingly scoreless night, and right now the Avs really need him to get something on the board. The same can probably be said for MacKinnon so far in this series. And Nazem Kadri.
“We were overwhelmed and overwhelmed,” Jared Bednar said. “They were much better and we were (much) worse. Our biggest problem, especially in the beginning, nobody wanted to skate with the puck. … We didn’t move. We made it easy for them. No speed at the red line.
Indeed, the Avs seemed to just be content with chase and chase hockey. That’s fine sometimes, but you have to go get the puck if you just want to throw it away. You have to have a good forecheck if you want to play that way, and the Avs didn’t.
“There are definitely some tactical things we can change for (Game 3),” Bednar said. “They responded with a big game. Now it’s up to us to do it too.
Says Rantanen: “Game 3 – we have to be ready.
OTHER THOUGHTS AND OBSERVATIONS
- The Blues’ first goal was deflected by Sam Girard’s stick.
- Should Bednar put rookie Alex Newhook in the lineup for Game 3, maybe give a night out to a Darren Helm, Andrew Cogliano or Nicolas Aube-Kubel? Yeah I think so. But I would also be concerned that Newhook has been gone a bit too long now and may have some serious rust.
- I could also put Logan O’Connor back in the lineup. I would like to see a little more speed, a little more stuffing, from that fourth row.
- MacKinnon and Rantanen need to score now, down the line. They are the two most talented offensive forwards on the team, and they now have to drive the bus.
- JT Compher had a very rough night. Minus-2, no shots, lost 4 of 6 faceoffs.
- Kadri, a minus-2, has lost 12 of 20 faceoffs. He must respond in Game 3.
- Cale Makar, who had a rare night’s rest, appeared to escape serious injury after entering the goal post hard and bending his right leg at the wrong angle.
- Despite the loss, MacKinnon was surprisingly calm and relaxed after the game with the media. If there was any concern in him, he didn’t show it. He was actually quite expansive with his answers.