DENVER - Gabriel Landeskog and Cale Makar scored power-play goals 2 minutes apart in the first period, Philipp Grubauer stopped 21 shots in his return from the league’s COVID-19 protocols and the Colorado Avalanche beat the San Jose Sharks 3-0 on Friday night. Grubauer showed few signs of rust in his first game since April 12. It was his sixth shutout of the season. “It felt like it’s been a long time since I played,” Grubauer said. “It was a tough one in the first (period) for me, got better in the second and the third one I felt back to 100%.” Mikko Rantanen added two assists and an empty-net goal for the Avalanche, who ended a three-game slide. Rantanen and Joonas Donskoi, who also had an assist, both were returning from the virus protocol list. San Jose and Colorado square off again Saturday. The serenade of “Gruuu-bi” by the sparse crowd only grew louder as the game wore on. Grubauer has a career-best 26 wins this season. “He’s the backbone of our team and he played … [Read more...] about Grubauer helps Avs break 3-game slide in 3-0 win over Sharks
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Denver Post sports writer Mike Chambers responds to questions in the Avs Mailbag periodically during the regular season. Pose an Avalanche- or NHL-related question for the Avs Mailbag. As we get closer to the playoffs, I’m curious what your thoughts are about the modified regular-season schedule that has seen the Avs play only seven teams, meaning playoff matchups beyond the divisional rounds will be against other strong teams they haven’t seen at all this year. The Avs have certainly looked like the best team in the league over the past few months, but I’m a little worried that their outstanding regular-season record is partially a result of most of their games coming against five teams that they’re just clearly more talented than. Toronto, Tampa, Washington and several others will be much tougher competition. Any concerns that, aside from Vegas and maybe Minnesota, the Avs won’t be tested against other top-tier teams until the final playoff rounds? — Matthew, Denver … [Read more...] about Avs Mailbag: How long will it take Philipp Grubauer to get back in game shape?
Stan and Josh Kroenke love you. Yes, they do. The rich-and-mighty Kroenkes live and die with every win or loss by the Nuggets, Avalanche and Arsenal, the same as working stiffs who cheer from the cheap seats. But, sometimes, Stan and Josh sure do have a funny way of showing the love. Die-hard fans from Denver to London, who tend to be distrustful of a family worth billions of dollars, do not find it amusing in the least. Feeling ignored, fans in Colorado are irked when the Kroenkes would rather let telecasts of the Avalanche and Nuggets go dark than lose a fight with adversaries playing financial hardball over broadcasting rights. Hot and bothered, hundreds of protesters lit flares Friday outside Emirates Stadium in North London and chanted for Josh and Stan to get out of a soccer business that frustrated Arsenal supporters believe two American businessmen can’t possibly understand. “I am well aware that we’ve never really had trust, and what teeny bit we had taking … [Read more...] about Kiszla: Power to the people! What frustrated Nuggets and Avs fans could learn from quick demise of soccer’s Super League
DENVER - Nathan MacKinnon bounced back from a rare scoreless night with a goal and an assist to lead the Colorado Avalanche to a 4-3 win over the San Jose Sharks on Saturday night. MacKinnon had his 15-game points streak ended Friday night and failed to get a shot on goal for the first time in 264 games. He made up for that with his 20th goal on one of nine shots for him. “He made some things happen,” Avalanche coach Jared Bednar said. “A couple of the faceoff things we had drawn up got us goals. It was just smart execution. He shot the puck pretty well. It looked like he was a little snake bit, but once he got that one he got a couple more (good chances).” Mikko Rantanen scored his 28th of the season and added an assist for Colorado and Devan Dubnyk stopped 22 shots against his former team. Alexander Barabanov and Tomas Hertl had a goal and an assist each, Logan Couture also scored and rookie goaltender Josef Korenar had 40 saves for the Sharks. San Jose fell further behind in … [Read more...] about MacKinnon, Rantanen score, Avs beat Sharks, 4-3
Heading into the third period, it looked like the Wild might give themselves a chance to make noise at the top of the West Division, and hurt the Blues’ playoff chances in the process. Then that third period happened. Not only did the Blues rally back from a 3-1 deficit, but with Robert Thomas ‘ goal with less than 30 seconds left, the Wild didn’t even receive a “charity point.” That Thomas goal made it 4-3 for the Blues over the Wild. Blues bolster West Division playoff hopes, beat Wild in regulation Thanks to this rally, the Blues broke the Wild’s seven-game winning streak; St. Louis extended its own run to three in a row. In the grand scheme of things, this isn’t the end of the world for the Wild, although there was an outside chance that they could move up a spot (maybe even two) in the West Division. Through 40 minutes, the Wild indeed looked like a team you shouldn’t overlook. [ Why you shouldn’t overlook the Wild ] But the Blues continue to play their best hockey … [Read more...] about Blues bolster playoff hopes after stunning Wild with late rally