Avalanche End Preseason with 4-3 Win Over Blackhawks - Colorado Avalanche Updates, News and Game Reviews at Avs Talk

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Avalanche End Preseason with 4-3 Win Over Blackhawks

The Avalanche ended their preseason tonight with a 4-3 win over the Chicago Blackhawks.

The Avs took the lead early in the third period after battling back from one-goal deficits in each of the first two periods.

The lead lasted until the 19:59 mark of the third when Martin Havlat scored on a powerplay to push the game to OT.

Midway through OT, the Avalanche got a powerplay opportunity of their own and - after going 0-4 in regulation - buried one past Cristobal Huet to get the all important W. 

We're talking a "must win" win here tonight, folks.

The Avalanche end the preseason with a record of 4-1-1 including wins in all three of their road games. So the Avs should be looking at about 60 wins this season based on that pattern. I better change my upcoming answer for the Avalanche roundtable on what I'll consider a successful season for the Avs.

The call from Norm Jones on the game winning goal included the words "powerplay", "Ryan Smyth" and "front of the net". Could Granato be on to something here?

Wojtek Wolski had a great night with 2 goals, 1 assist while winninng 100% of his faceoffs. Sure, it was just one faceoff he took but damn it, he won it. 

Brian Willsie had one heck of a game based on the numbers. He scored the almost-game-winning goal and recorded 2 hits and 4 takeaways. Willsie is making a case to hang around and it's going to be interested to see what the final roster to start the season looks like.

Joe Sakic had a three assist night as he gears up to move up the NHL all-time assists leader board.

Regulars David Jones, Marek Svatos and John-Michael Liles sat out tonight along with a group of on-the-cusp players including TJ Hensick and Per Ledin.

Had Jones been in tonight, there would have been no need for overtime. The Hawks would have waved the surrender flag after the first period.

The Avalanche's fantastic four of Jordan Leopold, Brett Clark, Adam Foote and Ruslan Salei led the team in ice time tonight, playing between 22 and 24 minutes each.  Leopold was the overall leader with 24:19 including 3:40 of PP time.

Brett Clark was back to his shot blocking ways with 4 on the night. Jordan Leopold was right behind him with 3. Please Leo, take all  precautions when blocking a shot including - but not limited to - a bulletproof vest.

Upcoming Game
The next game is Thursday, October 9th at 10pm ET when the Avalanche host the Boston Bruins in the season opener. The game will be joined in progress so keep your fingers crossed that the Leafs-Wings game doesn't go into overtime.


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