Colorado Avalanche at Minnesota Wild Free NHL Picks & Odds
by Tony Sink - 4/20/2014
Monday, April 21, 7:00 PM on NHL, TSN, Alti, FSN
Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, Minnesota
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Just like during the regular season, the Colorado Avalanche relied heavily on their youth to help get them the win as they were able to beat the Minnesota Wild 4-2 on Saturday night to take a 2-0 series lead. The Wild outshot and outhit the Avs, but Colorado looked like the better all-around team throughout the contest.
Center Charlie Coyle was able to put the Wild up 1-0 four minutes into the first period, but the Avalanche answered quickly through a goal by 18-year-old Nathan MacKinnon. The Avs grabbed the momentum in the second period when Gabriel Landeskog was able to score his second and third goals of the series to give Colorado a 3-1 lead. Marco Scandella gave Minnesota some hope late in the third period with a shorthanded tally, but Paul Stastny scored a power-play goal with 15 seconds remaining to seal it for the hosts.
MacKinnon certainly didn't play like a teenager in this one, assisting on three goals to go along with his first period tally. Veteran center Mikko Koivu had two assists in the win, while defenseman Ryan Suter was on the ice for a game-high 27:38 and had an assist for Colorado.
Avs goalie Semyon Varlamov had a great game in net by saving 30 of the 32 shots he faced for a .938 save percentage. Ilya Bryzgalov started in goal for the Wild, but he was replaced after allowing three goals on just 14 Avalanche shots.
Colorado is 26-14 straight up on the road this season
Colorado is 20-20-1 against the over/under on the road this season
Minnesota is 26-14 straight up at home this season
Minnesota is 14-18-9 against the over/under at home this season
Injuries to Watch
04/18/14 C John Mitchell Concussion out indefinitely
04/17/14 D Cory Sarich Back expected to miss first round of playoffs
03/31/14 C Matt Duchene Knee expected to miss first round of playoffs
02/25/14 RW Milan Hejduk Personal has retired
02/20/14 LW Alex Tanguay Hip out for season
04/11/14 LW Michael Rupp Suspension expected to miss first 3 playoff games
03/26/14 D Keith Ballard Groin out indefinitely
03/12/14 LW Jason Zucker Quad out for season
03/05/14 GO Niklas Backstrom Abdominal out for season
01/06/14 GO Josh Harding Illness out indefinitely
Tony's Pick: Take Minnesota
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