SUNRISE, Fla. — The Colorado Avalanche can be prepared once they go to the Florida Panthers on Thursday evening, and that’s — basically — a promise.
The Avs had an 11-game factors streak snapped on Tuesday in a 6-Three loss on the Pittsburgh Penguins.
“We have now to have a brief reminiscence,” mentioned Avs coach Jared Bednar after Colorado’s unbeaten string of 9-0-2 was damaged. “That is what we have been preaching. I do not care what we did yesterday, the day earlier than or the week earlier than.
“I am fearful in regards to the subsequent sport, and that is the way in which our entire crew thinks. That method was how we had been capable of maintain our factors streak.”
Colorado’s method has been working. After ending final within the league in 2016-2017 with solely 48 factors, the Avs earned 95 factors final season and made the playoffs. Their 47-point enchancment ranks because the fourth-best in NHL historical past.
In the meantime, the Panthers began slowly final season and completed with a rush — solely to fall one level in need of the playoffs.
They’ve began slowly once more this season however have began to realize some momentum throughout their present eight-game dwelling stretch. There are simply two video games left on this stand — the Avs on Thursday and the New York Rangers on Saturday.
Of the 16 factors out there to the Panthers in these video games, they’ve picked up eight to date (3-1-2), they usually might depart with 12 if all goes effectively the remainder of this week.
On Tuesday, the Panthers (11-10-5) turned of their most decisive win of the season, routing the Boston Bruins 5-0.
Mike Hoffman scored two objectives, Aleksander Barkov had three assists, and goalie Roberto Luongo returned from his second stint on injured reserve this season to document his 77th profession shutout, taking sole possession of ninth place on the all-time NHL listing.
“It was nice to have ‘Lu’ again in there,” Panthers coach Bob Boughner mentioned of Luongo, who made 32 saves in his first look since Nov. 23. “You could possibly see he was in full management again there. His rebound management was superb. There weren’t many second possibilities laying round his crease.”
Luongo has performed simply 10 video games this season as a result of a pair of lower-body accidents.
Assuming he performs on Thursday — Boughner could also be cautious with the 39-year-old goalie and choose to start out James Reimer as an alternative — he’ll face an Avs crew that leads the Western Convention with 10 street wins.
The Avalanche are 10-5-2 on the street and 16-7-5 general. With 37 factors, the Avs are second within the Western Convention, trailing solely the Nashville Predators (39 factors).
Florida, with 27 factors, entered Wednesday tied with the Ottawa Senators for final place within the Atlantic Division.
The Panthers’ offense is led by Hoffman, who was acquired from Ottawa in a steal of a commerce this previous offseason and has a team-high 14 objectives. He additionally has 26 factors in his previous 24 video games.
Panthers winger Jonathan Huberdeau can also be scorching with six straight multi-point video games. He had one purpose and two assists on Tuesday and has three objectives and 11 assists throughout his streak. Huberdeau can tie Pavel Bure’s franchise document with a multi-point sport his subsequent outing.
Colorado can counter with maybe the highest line within the NHL — heart Nathan MacKinnon and wingers Gabriel Landeskog and Mikko Rantanen.
This Avs trio ranks 1-2-Three on the crew in factors: Rantanen with 11 objectives and crew highs in assists (35) and factors (46); MacKinnon with a team-high 19 objectives and 43 factors; and Landeskog with 16 objectives and 31 factors.
All three of them are age 26 or youthful, and MacKinnon, 23, completed second within the Hart Trophy voting final season and likewise second within the NHL in factors per sport.