It’s official, the Colorado Avalanche have clinched a playoff birth after Thursday night’s big 4-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues.
Andre Burakovsky contributed two goals along with Brandon Saad and Pierre Edouard Bellemare to help the Avs get this important win.
Brief Game Recap
The Avs certainly played excellent hockey, showing they were definitely a real playoff team on the ice Thursday.
Avs goalie Devan Dubnyk did his part by making a total of 23 saves. It seems like Dubnyk has gotten pretty comfortable with his new team since being traded to the Avs from the San Jose Sharks before the NHL Trade Deadline.
On the Blues’ side, Jaden Schwartz scored both goals while the team’s goalie, Jordan Binnington, recorded 25 saves.
Burakovsky scored on a powerplay goal early in the second period. In addition, an assist was credited to both Cale Mekar and Nathan MacKinnon.
This assist helped keep his point streak alive to 12 games, with seven goals and 12 assists on record.
While the Blues narrowed the Avs’ lead to 3-2, it just wasn’t enough as the Avs would come back to score and eventually win the game.
An Analysis of the Avs and Blues
As of right now, the Avs are 18-1-2 in its last 21 games, which is certainly impressive..
In addition, Thursday night’s game marked the return of the team since their absence from the ice. The last time they played a game was Wednesday, April 14 when they defeated the Blues in a 4-3 victory. The reason was due to postponing some games thanks to COVID-19 protocols.
Now that it seems like all is well with the Avs, they are proving that they are ready for the playoffs. They have been playing good quality defense and offense. They have also been giving their opponents a difficult time scoring, all of which is certainly helpful once the Avs go into full playoff mode next month.
With this win, the Avs improved to 31-94 and have accumulated a total of 66 points. They are second place in the West Division, right behind the Vegas Golden Knights.
On another note, this loss will certainly be frustrating for an already struggling Blues. They are 19-19-6 this season and are on a three-game losing streak right now. They are also 3-6-1 in their last 10 games, a problem they are certainly hoping to fix sooner rather than later.
Up Next for the Avs and Blues
The Avs and Blues won’t have to wait long to see each other again. The two teams will hit the ice Saturday in an afternoon matchup.
The two teams will meet once more in a Monday night battle, as well.
Looking ahead into the Avs’ shedule, they a decent round of games they have to play. For instance, after concluding their series with the Blues, they head to Vegas to take on the Golden Knights. This could prove to be an interesting one, as we will see a first and second-ranked teams in the West Division face off.
It could also be a potential playoff matchup, so both teams will certainly want to bring some top-level hockey to the ice.
Finally, the Avs take on the Sharks beginning Saturday, May 1 to open a three-game series.
Now, the Blues’ schedule doesn’t seem to be getting any easier. After wrapping up their series with the Avs, they take on the red hot Minnesota Wild Wesdnay, April 28 and then again that very next night.
Additionally, the Blues face the Wild one more time on May 1.
Once the Blues conclude their series with the Wild, they move on to face the Anaheim Ducks. While the Ducks are slumping and are currently at the bottom of the West Division, this still doesn’t mean this will be an easy game for the Blues.
Things get tougher, however. The Blues will then begin a two-game series with the Golden Knights, a playoff-ready team.
The playoffs are right around the corner. The matchups will only get more intense and tougher from here.