|Record||Goaltender||GAA / SV%|
|Dallas Stars||5-4-0||Anton Khudobin||3.05 / .906|
|Colorado Avalanche||6-1-1||Pavel Francouz||3.64 / .900|
On Saturday night, the Dallas Stars defeated the Colorado Avalanche in Game 1 of the Second Round. It would be a massive upset if Dallas were to eliminate the Aves, but this year’s playoffs seem to have favored the underdogs thus far.
The Stars elected to start Anton Khudobin as Ben Bishop has been ‘unfit to play’, and the Avalanche started the night with Philipp Grubauer in net. Former Capital Andre Burakovsky gave his team one of the best scoring opportunities in the opening minutes of the game. In 58 games with the Avalanche this season, Burakovsky had 20 goals and 25 assists for 45 points. But at the four-minute mark, Tyler Seguin got Dallas on the board, giving them 1-0 lead. But just 64 seconds later, Nathan MacKinnon tied it all up with his 5th goal of the post-season, making it 1-1. Before the period was 10 minutes old, Blake Comeau re-instated Dallas’ lead with his 1st of the post-season. At the 16:28 mark, Alexander Radulov made it 3-1 Stars, heading into the second period. Neither team converted on their singular respective power plays in the first period.
Erik Johnson suffered an injury in the first but returned to the bench for the second period. Early in the middle frame, Aves goaltender Philipp Grubauer suffered a lower-body injury (suspected groin), and as a result, back-up Pavel Francouz came in as relief. Shortly thereafter, Gabe Landeskog made it 3-2 with his 1st of the post-season. A juicy rebound off Francouz from Seguin ended up on Radulov’s stick and behind the Colorado goaltender to give the Stars a 4-2 lead with 10:48 remaining. Radulov’s goal would be the eventual game-winner. With just over two minutes remaining in the period, Denis Gurianov was sent to the penalty box for high-sticking and Ryan Graves for tripping, and thus play resumed as 4-on-4. Nathan MacKinnon scored his second of the game after a shot by Samuel Girard redirected off him to again cut into Dallas’ lead. Still, Dallas would lead 4-3 heading into the 3rd period.
At the 8:47 mark of the third, Roope Hintz tallied his first of the post-season to give Dallas two-goal lead that they would ultimately hold throughout the remainder of regulation time.
There hasn’t been an update regarding Grubauer’s injury, and it is undetermined if he will be fit to play on Monday. Should Francouz get the start, the Czech goaltender will fit the bill. In 34 games played this season, he posted a 21-7-4 record with a .923 save percentage and a 2.41 GAA (NHL).
Below is the remaining schedule for DAL v COL:
Monday August 24 @ 9:45pm
Wednesday August 26 @ 10:30pm
Friday August 28 @ 10:00pm
Sunday August 30 @ TBD
Monday August 31 @ TBD
Wednesday September 2 @ TBD