NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, April 1st
(All times Eastern)
Colorado Avalanche (12-18-4) at Detroit Red Wings (17-13-5), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Detroit Red Wings will try to avoid their second three-
game losing streak in less than three weeks when they host the Colorado
Avalanche for Monday's battle at Joe Louis Arena.
The Red Wings had won three straight before dropping the finale of a four-game
road trip by a 2-0 count Thursday in San Jose. Detroit followed that shutout
loss with a humbling 7-1 setback in Sunday's home game against rival Chicago.
The Red Wings, who have made 21 straight playoff appearances, are currently
seventh out of the Western Conference's eight playoff seeds. Detroit is two
points ahead of eighth-seeded Columbus and one in back of No. 6 San Jose.
Detroit fell behind 3-0 in the first five minutes of Sunday's game against the
Blackhawks and never recovered. Cory Emmerton netted the lone Detroit goal in
the blowout, while Jimmy Howard allowed four goals on 14 shots before being
removed early in the second period. Jonas Gustavsson gave up three goals on 12
shots in relief for the Red Wings.
"We didn't play hockey tonight whatsoever. It's tough when you spot them a few
goals right away from the start," Detroit defenseman Niklas Kronwall said.
"You dig a big hole for yourselves and we couldn't find a way to get back. It
was embarrassing at times."
Detroit, which is 9-6-3 as the home club this season, will play two straight
and six of its next eight on the road.
The Avalanche had lost four straight in regulation before recording a 1-0
overtime victory in Saturday's home test against Nashville. It was just the
second win in 10 games (2-8-0) for a Colorado club that is last in the West
and nine points out of a playoff spot.
Tyson Barrie's tally at the 50-second mark of overtime was the lone score in
Colorado's 1-0 victory over the Predators. Barrie alertly followed up a Greg
Zanon point shot, flipping the rebound home from the right side before one
minute had elapsed in the extra session.
"I saw 'Zanny' loading up for the one timer. It popped out (of Nashville
goaltender Pekka Rinne's glove) and I knew I would have a chance," said Barrie
of his winning score.
Avs goaltender Semyon Varlamov kept his club in the game, stopping 34 shots to
record his 11th career shutout.
"I felt good all game. For sure a game like this will help us get our
confidence back," Varlamov said. "It was good to make saves at the start of
the game, because in other ones, we've given up early goals."
Avs forward Milan Hejduk suffered a shoulder injury on Saturday and is
doubtful for Monday.
While Colorado ended a four-game overall slide on Saturday, the Avs still
enter Monday having lost 11 straight on the road. The club last won away from
Denver when it beat Minnesota on Feb. 14 and Colorado has a dreadful 2-12-3
road mark this season.
The Avalanche have lost three of four and four of their last six games in
Detroit. The Red Wings have taken three of five overall in this series.
04/01 11:01:13 ET