Starting line was Hejduk/Hensick/Smyth. Interesting that Stastny is with the Wolski again. They almost scored early down low. Hopefully this works out.
The PK seems to be clicking again for them, minus the post that the kings hit early.
The power play in the first period seems to be over thought again as well. They can't seem to catch a break. Hejduk was cleanly beaten by Ersburg. Hensick hit the side of the net as well.
Hejduk redeems himself, scores the first goal and a power play goal. Pretty goal as well, off the post and around the goal. 4th assist of the season for Hensick, going to be very tough to send him back down.
Need to do some more garbage goal clean up in front of the opposing net. KIngs are continuing their tough play on Smyth carried over from last season.
Budaj is playing well. No goals on 13 shots.
End of 1st
Here we go again, another Avalanche penalty. The pk can only be good for so long. Another one killed, back to full strength.
The kings are playing very well against the fast rush of the Avalanche.
Power play opportunity for the Avs. They are shooting earlier in this one, not as much passings. Missed opportunity by Leopold. Wolski scores, second power play goal of the game.
Foote is injured, went into the boards face first. Dirty hit, elbow into the head. Suspension coming? We will see. Walked off with the help of the trainers and Smyth.
Looks like it could be quite a game. Quite a scurmish happened after the hit. Looks like the game could get quite testy from here on out.
After the break, the whole "Punch" line is in the penalty box. Hannan even dropped the gloves for the scurmish. I am banking on a few more fights in this game.
Powerplay opportunity results for Avs after the 4 on 4. Nothing doing on this one.
Avs will be killing a penalty now for a hit on Quincey. 4 minutes to Wolski, drew blood on the face of Quincey. Penalty kill has been solid first two minutes. Have not cleared and it results in a goal to the credit of Frolov. No one was clearing the two defenders in front of Budaj.
Another penalty coming. 2 minutes for hooking. They are sorely missing Foote on the Penalty Kill. He is a calming factor on the back end, and Hannan is missing him as well. He plays so much better when he is with Foote and not alone as the shut down guy. Penalty killed.
Something that is crossing my mind during all of this PK is that in the early going when the offense was on fire, they took the fewest penalties in the league. Its very hard to jump start an offense when you are sitting in the penalty box.
The Kings also look good in the face off circle.
Another power play opportunity. Smyth wins the face off and the shot comes very early, only two passes then a shot. Lots of shots in that power play, Liles even missed one off of the cross bar.
Period ends with shots for the Avs at 20 and the Kings 19. Pace of game slowed down drastically due to all the penalties both ways.
End of 2nd.
What a play by O'Sullivan and Kopitar. The Kings really do have some great young talent, will be quite cool to watch them develop.
What a save by Ersburg. Great glove hand save.
Another goal by the Kings, slow roller into the net on the Avs. They seem to have lost their momentum, we will see how resilient that they truly are. The loss of Foote seems bigger and bigger now.
A trend that I am noticing with this team is that they seem to be highly dependent on their leadership. They need tangible leadership, not words type of leadership, but the kind of take a game on their shoulder leadership. Without Sakic they seem to be missing that. They have quite a few young guys who aren't that type of clutch player, yet.
After that whole paragraph, Paul Stastny scores on a tip in type of goal. It's his first even strength goal of the season. 2 point night for him.
The Avs have also improved their clearing in front of the net. When I played I was always taught that the first shot was the goaltenders responsibility while the second shot was the defenders to clear. If that is the case then the Avs have vastly improved, and Budaj has been putting the rebounds in places that are much easier to control. Tighten that up even more and the defense of this team will continue to improve.
Clark quietly continues to have a very good season. He has an offensive upside, and is very strong defensively. He robbed Dustin Brown coming in strong with momentum, very hard to do.
Another hit to the head, this time it is Wolski who gets hit. Elbow to the head, this one looks to be accidental as Wolski lost his edge and seemed to fall into the hit. He has gotten up, and skates off of the ice with the help of Smyth and the training staff. Not an injury this team needs, he seemed to be on the verge of breaking out.
What is is with the injuries to head every time the Avs play the Kings. All of us remember the awful scene last year when Smyth took the hit into the break in the glass at the benches. It seems to be an epidemic of hits ever since Smyth broke his stick on LaBarbera's side very early last season. With all of the young players in both organizations it seems a nice rivalry could be brewing, lets keep the head injuries to a minimum though.
Padstack by Budaj, great save. He has only allowed one weak goal this game, and continues to give this team a chance to win. The kind of saves that are the clutch that have been missing. On that he made another one in close, from the slot.
Work down low looks good for the Avs. Best shift from Svatos, Stastny and Smyth. Looked like a very potent offensive shift without a goal.
Pentalty kill now started for the Avs Tucker is in the box for hooking. They have done a good job of clogging up the neutral zone this kill, and have not allowed them to set up so far. Very good kill.
What a flurry there at the end, miss by Leopold and off the post by Smyth. The low game is working very well for the Avs, hope that continues. I do enjoy garbage goals, a goal is a goal, no matter how ugly.
End of 3rd, headed to OT. No word on Wolski and Foote is rumored to have a back injury.
Glove save by Budaj and a flurry of offense for the Kings. Kopitar also continues to impress, and Budaj showed a lot of courage taking that away from him.
Good save from Ersburg on Smyth who's work in tight and in the slot continues to impress me. He works so hard, and he is trying to be that clutch player the Avs need.
Hensick just worked hard, and nearly by himself kept the Kings in their own zone for 20 seconds.
OT over, headed to shootout.
Save by Budaj on O'Sullivan.
Svatos scores 5 hole. His ability to juke in close is amazing to me.
Dustin Brown shut down by Budaj.
Hejduk shows great patients and beats Ersburg high.
End of Game.
All three of the last wins have come on the shoot out.
Cool note was Lapperiere signing Jerseys at the end of the game. Making a kids night.
All in all, a fun game to watch. Those two points will mean a lot, and the offense started to click. However two big players were lost in this game, and we hope both recover very quickly.