The 2013 season has been an up and down one for the Colorado Avalanche and they sound themselves near the bottom of their conference when they took the ice to battle the Calgary Flames. For Colorado, it was a game that would either bring the club under tremendous pressure, or it would be an opportunity for them to get things back on track before heading home to start a four game home stand.
With just about three minutes left in the third period Thursday night, the Avalanche could have felt like they just could not get it going against the Flames. Then, in a flurry of action a 3-3 game exploded into a 6-3 victory for the Avs, ending a three game skid during which they had scored just one goal.
The victory came in the final match-up of a four game road trip the Avalanche could not wait to have come to an end. Since the first game of the road trip versus the San Jose Sharks, Colorado had found it extremely difficult to get the puck into the goal, causing coach Joe Sacco to defend his players effort. He pointed out several bad breaks that led to easy goals for their opponents, but it is still easy to see how the effort can be called into question when a team manages just one goal in nine solid periods of play.
There was no doubting the effort on Thursday in Calgary with a tied game in the third keeping the fans on the edge of their seats. Paul Stastny got his first two goals of the season in back to back plays which is a good sign for the Avs who had been leaning on Matt Duchene since the start of the season. Duchene has been playing well, but if the Avalanche want to climb the standings in the NHL Western Conference, the are going to need help from some of their other play makers.
Jeff Everette is a Featured Columnist for RantSports.com, covering the NFL and NBA. Follow Jeff on twitter @jeverettesports, like his page on FaceBook, or add his Google + to your circles for all of his latest articles, thoughts, and rants.