RECAP: Avalanche dominate Blackhawks in one-sided affair


As one team looked to wrap up a five-game road trip, the other looked to continue to roll in their home opener, the Chicago Blackhawks took on the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday night in Denver. The Blackhawks were coming into the night having taken down the Maple Leafs in Toronto, and looking good doing it, showing resilience they did not show last season. The Avalanche, on the other hand, have looked as good as ever in the early going this season, having taken down every opponent they have faced to this point, and sweeping their season-opening three-game road trip on the west coast.

First period

After trading chances on both sides, the Blackhawks went on the power play with about 10 minutes to go in the period. Bowen Byram went to the sin bin for putting the puck directly over the glass. Halfway through the power play, Ryan Donato would turn the puck over along the boards, and with a quick pass up ice, Logan O’Connor was off to the races, in on a breakaway. He went high glove over Petr Mrazek, putting the Avalanche up 1–0.

Before the period was out, the Blackhawks put the Avalanche on the power play, with Tyler Johnson getting caught with his stick up on Samuel Girard. On the ensuing power play, the Avalanche would get a flurry or opportunities against Mrazek. After Mikko Rantanen put one off the post, and Mrazek made a great save, Artturi Lehkonen got a redirect right in on goal. The rebound bounced out, off of Connor Murphy and over to Ryan Johansen, who stuck with it to put the puck in the back of the net, and send it to the intermission 2–0 Colorado.

Second period

The Avalanche dominated possession from the middle of the first period on. About halfway through the second period, it appeared as though Colorado would go up 3–0, as Miles Wood seemed to put his second of the season past Mrazek, but it got called back for an offside on the pass to get into the zone. The Avalanche would get that goal back, however, as Devon Toews would score at the 13:18 mark of the period on a beautiful tic-tac-toe passing play from Toews to Valeri Nichushkin, right back to Toews, who put the puck into a wide open net to officially grab the 3–0 edge.

Third period

The third period continued the Avalanche’s domination of the puck, as they only allowed one Chicago shot on goal in the last 11:45 of the game. Nathan MacKinnon had been sniffing around the net all game long, and finally got his chance to put one in the back of the net. A long wrist shot came in from the point and the puck bounced out in front to Tomas Tatar, who made a pass to a streaking MacKinnon, who put it over Mrazek’s shoulder, 4–0 Colorado. That is how the game would end.


The Blackhawks seemed to have run out of steam by the end of their road trip. Five games is a long time to be away, and with them facing a lot of teams who had home openers, they were constantly facing a fired up crowd who were excited to see their teams in person for the first time this season. Mrazek absolutely stood on his head, as he seems to be rejuvenated in the early going this season.

The Avalanche continued to roll, as they have won all four of the games they have played this season, with different lines and different players contributing each night.

Both teams are back in action on Saturday, with the Blackhawks finally playing on home ice, taking on the Vegas Golden Knights on NBC Sports Chicago at 7 p.m. CDT. The Avalanche play host to the Carolina Hurricanes at home at 7 p.m. MDT on Altitude Sports.

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