March 10, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Avalanche right wing Steve Downie (27) skates with the puck during the first period against the Edmonton Oilers at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-US PRESSWIRE

Avalanche Vs. Oilers: Colorado Picks Up Huge Victory Over Edmonton On Saturday

The Colorado Avalanche improved their playoff chances on Saturday with a victory over the Edmonton Oilers.

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13 Total Updates since March 6, 2012
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Oilers Vs. Avalanche Final Score: Colorado Pulls Out 3-2 Shootout Victory

The Colorado Avalanche picked up a much needed victory on Saturday afternoon by defeating the Edmonton Oilers, 3-2, in in overtime shootout win. The Avalanche currently hold the eighth and final spot in the Western Conference Playoffs with 76 points, one point ahead of the San Jose Sharks.

After the Oilers' Ryan Smyth put the puck in the back of the Avalanche net late in the first period, Colorado had a 2-1 lead at the end of the second period following goals by Cody McLeod and Peter Mueller, each recording their sixth of the season.

And for nearly the next 26 minutes of the game, the Avalanche looked to have a 2-1 victory in hand. But the stick of Taylor Hall said no and proceeded to score his 25th goal of the season at 15:17 in the third period. The teams then went quietly through overtime to reach the shootout.

Milan Hejduk and Peter Mueller were the first two shooters for the Avalanche and they were able to penetrate Nikolai Khabibulin's wall in front of the net for two goals. Both Oilers shooters couldn't put one past Semyon Varlamov, giving the Avalanche the victory.

Colorado (36-30-4, 76 points) hos the Anaheim Ducks on Monday.

For updates, stay tuned to SB Nation Denver. For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey. And for more from around the league, check out SB Nation's NHL news hub.

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Oilers Vs. Avalanche Score Update: Colorado Scores A Pair In The Second, Leads 2-1

The Colorado Avalanche trailed 1-0 heading into the second period this afternoon against the Edmonton Oilers, but a two-goal second now has Colorado on top. The Avalanche lead 2-1 with one period remaining at the Pepsi Center, and are out-shooting Edmonton 24-19.

Colorado's Cody McLeod tied the game at one when he beat Oilers goalie Nikolai Khabibulin four minutes into the period. McLeod's sixth goal of the season was set-up by teammates Ryan Wilson and Kevin Porter. The Avalanche would grab the lead when Peter Mueller scored his sixth goal of the season 10 minutes into the period. Milan Hejduk and Mark Olver were credited with assists.

Aside from out-shooting the Oilers through two periods, the Avs also hold advantages in hits (17-9) and faceoff wins (20-14).

For updates, stay tuned to SB Nation Denver. For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey. And for more from around the league, check out SB Nation's NHL news hub.

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Avalanche Vs. Oilers: Colorado, Desperate For Points, Closes Out Season Series With Edmonton

The Colorado Avalanche fell to a playoff-bound Nashville Predators on Thursday night, missing out on a golden opportunity to leapfrog their way back into the top eight seeds in the Western Conference. They will not have that same leeway on Saturday afternoon against the Edmonton Oilers.

The Oilers are virtually guaranteed yet another top 3 pick in the upcoming NHL Draft; this season is already over for them. They have lost four of their past five games, and their young and talented offense has simply not been able to support one of the league's most porous defenses.

With Matt Duchene out for the remainder of the regular season and defenseman Erik Johnson questionable for Saturday's game, the Avalanche will have to earn the two points up for grabs. With a victory, Colorado can potentially leapfrog all the way to 7th place tie in the Western Conference. A loss against one of the league's worst teams, especially at home, would be the second devastating loss in the past week (after last Thursday's defeat against Columbus).

If Colorado wants to make the playoffs, they need to handily defeat a wounded Edmonton team at Pepsi Center.

Semyon Varlamov will get the start in net for Colorado after continuing his stretch of excellent performances.

Puck drops at 1:00 p.m. MDT.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Oilers blog Copper N' Blue.

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Avalanche Vs. Predators Final Score: Colorado Loses 4-2 After Comeback Falls Short

The Colorado Avalanche ended up on the wrong end of a failed comeback on Thursday night, losing 4-2 against the Nashville Predators. In an up-and-down game for the Avalanche, an early deficit proved to be too much to overcome despite Colorado actually scoring the first goal of the game.

Just over a minute into the game, the Avalanche took a 1-0 lead on James McGinn's 16th goal of the season. The advantage didn't last long, though, and soon enough Colorado itself was looking at a deficit.

Less than two minutes after McGinn's goal, Nashville tied the game on Mike Fisher's 20th goal of the season, and Brandon Yip gave the Predators the lead just minutes later with his second goal of the year.


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Paul Stastny eventually cut Nashville's lead to 3-2 early in the third period, but Colorado wasn't able to get another goal before the Predators put the game away with an empty net goal in the final minute.

The loss drops Colorado to 35-30-4 on the season. Nashville is 39-21-7 following the win.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Predators blog On The Forecheck.

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Avalanche Vs. Predators Score Update: Nashville Moves To 3-1 Lead After 2 Periods

The Colorado Avalanche are down 3-1 to the Nashville Predators on Thursday night after two periods of play. For almost 20 minutes the Avalanche and the Predators were unable to score, but Sergei Kostitsyn changed all that with just 32 seconds left on the clock. The Avalanche committed a costly turnover that resulted in Kostitsyn put the puck in the back of the net for a bit of a buffer heading into the final period of play.

At the end of the period, Steve Downie and Mike Fisher each received two minutes for roughing on one another. About a minute before the Nashville goal, Cody McLeod and Jordin Tootoo started laying into each other, which provided life to a period that previously lacked it.

Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson had left the ice for several minutes, but he wound up making it back toward the end of the period.

Nashville holds a 22-12 shot advantage over Colorado, but the latter at least approached double-digit shots, falling one short at nine.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Predators blog On The Forecheck.

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Avalanche Vs. Predators First Period Update: Nashville Takes The Early Lead, 2-1

The Nashville Predators scored two first-period goals to take an early 2-1 lead over the Colorado Avalanche after one period of play in Nashville.

The Predators scored first at the 6:58 mark of the opening session on a goal by Roman Josi, a 54-foot tip-in, with an assist by Paul Gaustad. Nashville added to its one-goal advantage when Mike Fisher stroked a wristshot into the Avalanche net with 2:54 to go in the first stanza on an assist from Ryan Suter.

Colorado got on the scoreboard at 1:14 in the opening period when Jamie McGinn scored from seven feet, with an assist from Paul Stastny.

The Avalanche came into Thursday night's game with the Predators with a 35-29-10 record and second place in the Nothwest Division of the Western Conference of the NHL with 74 total points. Nashvile holds down second place in the Central Division with a record of 35-21-7, totaling 83 points.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Predators blog On The Forecheck.

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Avalanche Vs. Predators: Colorado Heads To Nashville Without Matt Duchene

The Colorado Avalanche resuscitated their playoff dreams with back-to-back dominating performances of the struggling Minnesota Wild, and have now won five of their past seven games. Now, the challenge is to continue that momentum for the final stretch of the season; eight of their last 14 games are on the road.

First, Colorado must take on the Nashville Predators. The Predators are solidly in the playoff discussion and, with a dominant goaltender in Pekka Rinne and the league's most fearsome blue line manned by Ryan Suter and Shea Weber, could be mentioned as a dark horse Stanley cup Contender. They certainly have had their way with Colorado lately, winning the past six contests by a 24-11 margin. In fact, the Avalanche have not defeated the Predators since January 22, 2010. If Colorado wants to keep pace with the streaking Dallas Stars, they need to find a way to finally beat the team from Tennessee.

This task becomes more difficult with another injury to forward Matt Duchene, continuing his extremely difficult season. Duchene has been bounced from center to wing, he has missed six weeks with a knee injury, and now will likely miss the remainder of the regular season with an ankle injury.

Semyon Varlamov will get the start in net for Colorado. The Russian netminder is finally starting to show the potential that the Avalanche front office traded for last offseason, displaying a sparkling .950 SV% and two shutouts in his last eight starts.

Puck drops at 6:00 p.m. MDT.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Predators blog On The Forecheck.

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Matt Duchene Injury: Avalanche Forward Out For 3-4 Weeks

The Colorado Avalanche will be without forward Matt Duchene for three to four weeks following the ankle injury he suffered on March 6 during a game against the Minnesota Wild. After the team ruled out Duchene for Thursday's game against the Nashville Predators, the Avalanche announced on Thursday morning that Duchene could miss up to a month:

During the third period in that game, the Wild's Nick Palmieri skated in front of Duchene and had his skate hit into Duchene's right skate, causing Duchene's ankle to fly in a number of directions and then get caught in the ice. He needed help to get off the ice.

Given the time frame for his recovery (without surgery), Duchene still could miss the rest of the regular season. The final regular season game takes place on April 7.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey.

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Wild Vs. Avalanche Final Score: Colorado Routs Minnesota, 7-1

The Colorado Avalanche picked up a 7-1 win over the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday night, but not without a loss of its own. Forward Matt Duchene left the game during the third period with an apparent right ankle injury. His status has not been updated yet

Colorado held a 1-0 lead after the first period and then extended that to 5-0 after the second period. In that middle frame, the Avalanche scored all five goals in a span of 5:41, and the last three in slightly over two minutes. The Wild wound up getting on the board with a Devin Setoguchi penalty shot on what the referee called hooking by Matt Hunwick. Paul Stastny and Cody McLeod added the final two goals for the Avalanche.

This was a penalty-laden game before the hooking call on Hunwick. In the first period, the Avalanche and the Wild combined for 40 penalties minutes, mostly due to fighting. Things slowed dramatically during the final two periods, but Kyle Brodziak picked up 17 penalty minutes for fighting, for instigating the fight and a misconduct.

Semyon Varlamov stopped 21 of 22 shots while the Wild went with two goals. Matt Hackett allowed four goals on 21 shots before Josh Harding came in during the second goal, allowing three more over the remainder of the game.

The Avalanche (35-29-4, 74 points) are tied with the Los Angeles Kings in points, but they remain out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Wild blog Hockey Wilderness.

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Matt Duchene Injury: Colorado Forward Leaves Game With Right Ankle Injury

The Colorado Avalanche lost forward Matt Duchene to a right leg injury, possibly his right ankle, during the third period of Tuesday's game against the Minnesota Wild. The Wild's Nick Palmieri crossed in front of Duchene and his skate hit into Duchene's right foot. Duchene's ankle turned in all kinds of horrible directions, which caused his leg to give out and put him down on the ice.

Duchene needed help getting off the ice, unable to put weight on his right leg. With the help of a teammate and a team trainer, Duchene was able to get off the ice and head to the locker room for further examination. Duchene missed nearly two months earlier this season due to a left knee injury.

The Avalanche lead the Wild, 5-1, during the final period of the game. The Wild scored on a Devin Setoguchi penalty shot.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Wild blog Hockey Wilderness.

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Wild Vs. Avalanche: Colorado Widens Lead To 5-0

The Colorado Avalanche have blown wide open their Tuesday night game against the Minnesota Wild to the tune of a 5-0 lead after two periods. They scored five goals in a span of 5:41.

Jamie McGinn started the scoring at 10:53 when he redirected the puck right in front of the net after getting the puck from Peter Mueller. Jan Hejda came up with his fifth goal of the season when he rocketed one past Matt Hackett for the 3-0 lead. Then Paul Stastny offered the puck to Mark Olver, who then hit into Hackett while scoring the goal. Josh Harding replaced Hackett after that, but a little over a minute later, at 16:34 in the period, Gabriel Landeskog fed the puck to Ryan O'Reilly, who put the puck at the back of the net for the 5-0 lead.

Semyon Varlamov has made 17 saves already while Hackett allowed four goals on 21 shots.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Wild blog Hockey Wilderness.

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Wild Vs. Avalanche Score: Colorado Emerges With 1-0 Lead After 1st Period

The Colorado Avalanche lead the Minnesota Wild, 1-0, after the first period, but it has been anything but a clean game for either side. A total of 40 penalty minutes were racked up by the two teams.

Jay McClement scored the only goal of the game at 3:05 in the period when he came down on the left wing and shot it to the opposite side of the net, past Matt Hackett. The Avalanche have put 12 shots on net while only allowing the Wild to get nine on Semyon Varlamov. Devin Setoguchi had a chance at tying the game in the late seconds of the period, but Varlamov wound up making a huge save while winding up on ice once he made the block.

Most of the penalties were doled out as a result of fighting. Jamie McGinn and Kyle Brodziak each received a five-minute major for fighting, but Brodziak also took a two-minute instigator and a 10-minute misconduct. Later Erik Johnson and Warren Peters got into fisticuffs and took five-minute majors at 15:56.

For more coverage, visit our Avalanche blog Mile High Hockey and our Wild blog Hockey Wilderness.

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Avalanche Vs. Wild: Colorado Closes Out Season Series With Minnesota

Colorado looks to sweep their home-and-home against Minnesota and even up their season series versus the Wild.

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