August 17, 2022

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Colorado Avalanche star Nathan MacKinnon was direct in his evaluation of his crew’s effort in...

Colorado Avalanche star Nathan MacKinnon was direct in his evaluation of his crew’s effort in a 4-1 Recreation 2 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Thursday night time.

“We had been dangerous. We had been actually dangerous tonight,” MacKinnon mentioned with the Western Convention second-round collection now tied 1-1. “We simply didn’t have our leap tonight. However we nonetheless really feel like we’re a fantastic crew. We’ve to overlook about it and transfer on.”

Though Colorado wanted extra time to win Recreation 1 in opposition to St. Louis, the Avalanche managed that recreation. They pumped 54 pictures on Blues goalie Jordan Binnington and had 106 shot makes an attempt on the night time. In Recreation 2, they managed 31 pictures and solely 60 whole shot makes an attempt.

“We obtained outworked and outskated,” Colorado coach Jared Bednar mentioned. “They had been higher, and we had been worse. Our largest challenge, particularly early on, was that nobody needed to skate with the puck. They did a pleasant job within the impartial zone, however we didn’t transfer.”

Once they did have the puck, the Avalanche couldn’t make a lot occur at 5-on-5. Their lone aim within the recreation got here from captain Gabriel Landeskog on the facility play early within the third interval. Perron added one other aim to make it 3-1 earlier than Brandon Saad ended it with an empty netter.

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“Our execution was off. We weren’t feeling it. Simply preventing it on the market,” MacKinnon mentioned. “It’s unlucky, however it’s 1-1. We get to go on the street and hopefully steal one there. Hopefully two. We’ve gotta overlook about it and transfer on and get again to the best way that we play.”

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The Blues entered Recreation 2 with a totally totally different method than within the earlier recreation. They didn’t overcommit on their forecheck, leaving defenders again to clog the impartial zone and supply puck help within the defensive zone. Additionally they managed the puck higher. As soon as they entered the Colorado zone, they made the Avalanche defend greater than they did in Recreation 1.

Extra importantly, St. Louis added to its lead when it had the chance, going up 2-0 on a David Perron 5-on-3 power-play aim late within the second interval.

“I’ve seen all of it 12 months. We’re a very good crew. They know in Recreation 1 they didn’t do nicely sufficient, and all 12 months they’ve responded,” Blues coach Craig Berube mentioned.

Now the strain falls on the Avalanche, and a few of it’s the strain of current historical past.

Colorado has been eradicated within the second spherical in three straight seasons. Within the 2021 Stanley Cup playoffs, the Avalanche swept the Blues within the first spherical, dominated the Vegas Golden Knights in Recreation 1 of the second spherical, after which ended up dropping in six video games.

This postseason, they swept the Nashville Predators, managed Recreation 1 of the second spherical after which noticed the Blues flip the script and even the collection forward of Recreation 3 on Saturday night time in St. Louis.

MacKinnon mentioned the Avalanche are decided to not let historical past repeat itself.

“I believe, years previous, we’d dwell on it and get down on ourselves and one another. We simply obtained to choose one another up and transfer on and keep constructive,” MacKinnon mentioned. “We’ve a fantastic crew. We nonetheless imagine we will get this factor carried out and win the collection. We’re not going to comb each spherical. It’s fantastic.”

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