Were it not for the Vezina Trophy quality performance by Pekka Rinne last night as the game wound down, there would be no joy in Mudville (or Nashville either) this morning as the entire team wore down and left Rinne to fend off the Avalanche by himself.
Colorado played dead for most of the game but came alive in the last seven minutes of the game after the Predators had claimed a 3-0 lead. It is hard to say if the problem was the altitude or the fact that Colorado had shown little to fear throughout most of the game, or a combination of both.
Regardless, this scene of a collapse and not finishing off teams in the final minutes is becoming a major issue. After a similar collapse against a much better Anaheim team a week ago, Barry Trotz said "When are we going to learn?" He referenced game five against Chicago last year in the playoffs as another game to learn from. Now he has another object lesson to point to for the Predators.
Saturday's match with Detroit should be a meeting of two coaches who aren't happy with their team's last outing. Detroit was man-handled by St. Louis 10-3 on Wednesday which was the most goals given up by a Wings team in 17 years.
Detroit, who has 98 points, fell into third place behind the Sharks last night. The Predators moved into sixth with 94 points, the same as fifth place Los Angeles. The Preds are also a point behind Phoenix who is in fourth.
For the month of March the Predators went 10-3-2 for 22 points which bests January's 18 and December's 17 as the most productive month of the season.
The win over the Avs made it a perfect 4-0 season sweep over Colorado.
In an oddity last night, the Predators never went on the penalty kill, with the only infraction being after time expired when David Legwand and Erik Johnson mixed it up.
The Predators scheduled practice at noon at Centennial has been confirmed. With an early game on Saturday, the Predators cannot take the day off.
Preds-Avs Round Up...
Here is our game story from last night.
Josh Cooper had his game story, notes column, and postgame ponderings.
The City Paper points out that Marty Erat became the team's top scorer with a goal and an assist.
From the blog world reports come from Amanda DiPaolo, Mark Willoughby, Dirk Hoag (with his advances stats), Jeremy Gover, Predatorial, Fang Faction, and Hockey Night in Nashville.
For the other side of the story from Denver check out Adrian Dater, Aaron Musick, Mile High Hockey, The Avalanche Guild, Jibblescribbits, and AvsHockeyPodcast.
In Preds Nation...
NHL.com caught up with the Predators in Denver for a feature on how the Preds get things done.
Dobber Hockey had an early April Fools for Pred fans - Radulov Returns!
Jeremy at Section 303 has a post on stats to keep in mind.
Be carefull what you read at Section 303 today. It appears that their site has been hijacked.
AJ at PMFF takes a look at the possibilities for the Predators but it all comes back to Just Win, Baby.
Fang Faction has already moved on to Hating Detroit.
I don't understand what he is doing, but Eklund has the Predators in the SCF against Philadelphia. With his track record, this may not be a good omen.
Cap Geek has the preliminary figures for the Austin Watson contract.
The Predators get a special dishonorable mention as a team in Dobber Hockey's top ten fantasy busts at Puck Daddy.
Vote for the Preds over the Sounds in the latest round of Music City Brand Madness.
Bryan Mullen has a cool story about Dan Hamhuis's recent return to Bridgestone Arena.
If you are looking for Predator action tonight, try the wine festival. On Saturday, you can adopt a dog at the Bridgestone Arena when you go to buy your playoff tickets.
Jim Diamond has more about the adopt a dog event on Saturday.
Interesting Admirals stat from @mkeadmirals forward Kelsey Wilson becomes team's all-time @TheAHL games leader tomorrow. 294 games, passing Darren Haydar.
The Admirals have a crucial game with Houston tonight as the two teams are battling for first place in the Western Division in the AHL playoff race.
No Admirals were named to the AHL post season all-star teams.
This video has been around for a while but it is one of my favorites with Pekka working the drive thru at Wendy's.
Around the NHL...
Ryan Porth crams the whole month of March into one post. This is an epic story.
Tickets are now on sale to this years NHL Awards at the Palms in Las Vegas.
Steve Lapore has the "tentative" schedule for the Stanley Cup Finals. They will start off with back to back games once again then spread the next five over two weeks. He also has the schedule for eight games on NBC/Versus in the last eight days of the season.
Craig Custance has John Tortorella in the lead for the Jack Adams Trophy and does not have Barry Trotz on his list.
Ottawa signed free agent college prospect Stephane Da Costa to end the recent jockeying for his services.
Michelle Kenneth accesses the prospects of a retirement for Marty Brodeur.
Due to prior complaints, I did not post the latest Sidney Crosby practice video, but you can go here to see it.
TSN Radio 1050 will begin in Toronto on April 13 to spread the TSN brand to a new venue.
A Coyote fan is a suspect in the missing cobra case in New York.
Odds and Ends...
The cobra was indeed actually found 200 feet from its home.
What are the odds of going on a date with a long lost sibling? Bookies have the answer here.
Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass