Nazem Kadri was at the Avalanche dog house last week. He was the celebrated hero on Thursday night.
Kadri, who recently had the team’s worst minus 9 score, scored two goals and assisted another goal in the third half to lead the Avalanche to a 3-0 win and two games against the San at the Ball Arena Jose Sharks to win.
Colorado (5-3) had scored 15 goals in their last two home games but remained goalless in the first 49:55 against the Sharks (3-5), who were the first opponents to be defeated by the Avs.
Kadri scored at 9:55 am in the last frame, knocking Devan Dubnyk in front of the goalkeeper’s left post. Linemates Brandon Saad and former Shark Joonas Donskoi got the backing with hard work, and Saad eventually pushed the puck down onto Kadri.
The Avs doubled their lead 1:58 later when Andre Burakovsky tapped Kadri’s pass over the right circle home. Saad got the second assist on goal.
Kadri and Saad, along with defenseman Sam Girard, led the Avs by 2 on the night.
“I thought it was a character victory,” Saad said. “Sometimes you will have games like this. We won’t win every game by seven goals. So that we can stick with it and know that we are playing an accurate game from period to period, we will score a goal with this team. “
The Sharks took the final penalty of the game and Kadri turned Makar’s shot from the front into Cale. Makar’s nine team-level assists top the list of all NHL defenders.
Colorado overtook the Sharks by 38:21 – 20: 8 in the third period.
“I don’t think we had great legs in the first interview,” said Avs coach Jared Bednar, who finished in 150th place. “We wanted to stick with it in the second round and we started creating some scoring chances and power games and for the most part I thought this was a really good time. We hit a few posts, had good chances and just didn’t take advantage of them. The message was simple: just stick with it and don’t miss any of our recordings. We got a little too picky. We could have put a few more pucks in the net. I thought we did that on the third. “
Both teams entered the last frame goalless and 0: 3 in power play. Av’s goalkeeper Philipp Grubauer had made 13 saves in two periods and Dubnyk had 18 before the other net.
Grubauer went on to record his second shutout of the season – matching his total from last season.
“I think it’s an advantage for us to play in these close games because when we skate and play our game there aren’t many teams that can beat us,” said Grubauer.
The Avalanche is set to play next Saturday to begin a four-game game against the Wilds. The first two games take place in St. Paul and the latter two in Denver.
Injured. The center of the fourth line, Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, suffered a potentially serious injury in the first phase. He collided with Donato in the neutral zone and Bellemare’s right leg was compromised.
With no fans in the building, Bellemare could be heard screaming in pain. He did not return and ended with only 2:20 Ice Age. Bednar did not have a post game update on the status of Bellemare.
Colorado’s Matt Calvert, who is usually Bellemare’s right winger, missed his second game due to an illness. Calvert has a history of concussion and was found not to be feeling well but was not diagnosed with a concussion.
Footnotes. The Avs were 4 out of 4 on penalties and have now removed their last 17 drawbacks. They are a perfect 15-on-15 home. For the season, they’re 28-for-31 (90.3%), finishing in third place. Third place in the league. … Colorado went 1: 4 in the power play and has 12 power play goals for the season in the top division. … Goalie Pavel Francouz, who has not played this season, is out with a lower body injury and Hunter Miska continues to support Gruabuer. … Av’s Star Center Nathan MacKinnon scored a shot in his 228th straight game to beat Joe Sakic for the all-time record. MacKinnon’s streak, the longest active stretch in the NHL, began in Dallas on October 14, 2017. MacKinnon has led the NHL in shots for the past two seasons. … Patrick Marleau (41) from San Jose played in his 1,731. NHL game to tie Ron Francis for the fourth time ever. Marleau is in his 23rd NHL season. Gordie Howe holds the all-time game record with 1,767. Mark Messier is second (1,756), followed by Jaromir Jagr (1,733). … The Avs and Sharks met for the 100th time in the regular season.