Game 49: Featuring Varlomov the Bully

Going into last night’s game, we knew a few thing about the Avs: They were, and still are, ranked fifth in the division, Jarome Iginla is having a banner year reaching professional milestones, they had played the night before and won in their first shootout of the season, the Stars have previously struggled against the Avs, and Italia knew Varlomov is scary. To explain, he was the one who shutout the Blackhawks and ended Patrick Kane’s record breaking point streak. While Caitlynn also knew this, she has too much hubris for her own good. She was more occupied by the fact that Jordie is still out…


So between the two of us, we didn’t know what was going to happen during this game.


Sadness happened. 😦


But before we get to that, some good things that happened:

-The Roussel-Janmark-Hemsky line is still clicking nicely.

-Nichushkin was looking much more physically imposing this game (though the one check we saw, he ended up on the ice himself, but it’s a start).

-Eaves made some impressive moves to keep the puck in the zone, one after a well done poke check by Lindell, who seems more confident each game.

-Puck possession was strong

-Solid defensively for the most part (while even strength, or down a man…)

-No fights! (Despite Roussel getting close, being Roussel as usual).

-Only one penalty! (Too many men…)

-Demers scored his fifth goal of the season, on the power play! (And they played Sia’s “Chandelier” for him!)


Now, the sad things that happened:

-After scoring his fifth goal of the season, Demers was promptly whacked with a high-stick. (He went down the tunnel, leaving him unable to celebrate his goal or listen to the song played in his honor… but he came back and played strong!(Sans tooth…))

-Skille had a scary collision with the boards, and although he skated to the bench unassisted, he went down the tunnel and did not return the rest of the game (Possible back injury?)

-Klingberg ended up in the net twice? (Not on purpose, or so we assume.)

-He also turned over the puck… during key moments that lead to the Avs scoring… while we were on the power play. Twice. Two times. TVÅ. TWO SHORT HANDED GOALS. We don’t do as well on our power plays as the Avs do on our power plays, apparently. We’re not going to mention that one of those power plays was four whole minutes in which we failed to score.


General things that happened:

-Nichushkin got a stick threaded through his skates, but kept possession of the puck and passed it successfully, which was nice. He managed to successfully remove the stick (as the owner of the stick watched intently, but without offering help) and continue playing.

-Fiddler looked close to exchanging blows with an Avs player. They were broken up, but during the whole event, Fiddler maintained a smirk that dared the other guy to throw the first punch, just do it.


Some observations, whether good or bad:

-Eaves spent some time on the top power play unit, as well as on the Benn-Seguin line for a shift.

-Nichushkin also spent a shift on the Benn-Seguin line.

-Left net got dislodge twice, but only while behind Varlomov. (Coincidence? Italia doesn’t think so)


So at the end, the final score was 3-1 Colorado Avalanche. Shots on goal were an amazing and horrible 42-15… Impressive for our offense. Extremely impressive for their defense… Speaking of defense…Varlomov. Stay tuned for a short rant from Italia:

Where did this dude come from? Again, I knew this was the goalie that shut down Kane’s streak (thanks for that, by the way). So knowing that they had played the night before, I was hoping they would maybe give him a rest after winning a shootout. But no, that didn’t happen. The Stars certainly made him work. They peppered him with 42 shots. But he stood strong, frustratingly so. In my mind, I realize that he was not the only barrier preventing us from winning. But seriously. Screw that guy. Caitlynn and I have an understanding that goalies are immune from our blacklist. But as of last night, Varly is an exception and sits solidly at the top of my personal blacklist… (The list is fairly short).

Anyways, it was a disappointing loss, to a team that seems to give us issues each time we meet. As of last night, our series sits at 0-2-0 against the Avs. We have one more game against the Calgary Flames to finish this sad month of January. But we’re staying positive, because despite our special team woes, we are seeing a lot of good things from our guys. There’s still a lot of hockey left to be played.


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