AVALANCHE

The Avalanche officially know where they’re headed to start playoffs

Apr 16, 2024, 8:25 PM

The Colorado Avalanche will begin Round 1 of the Stanley Cup playoffs on the road against the Winnipeg Jets.

We’ve known the opponent for a few days, but now we know where the series will begin. It’ll start in Winnipeg either this weekend or early next week. The NHL has yet to release a postseason schedule.

The Jets beat the Kraken 4-3 on Tuesday night to ensure second-place in the Central Division, jumping to 108 points while Colorado has 105. Both teams have one game left in the regular season, which will ultimately be meaningless. The Avs wrap up with the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night at Ball Arena.

On the season, Colorado is 0-3-0 against Winnipeg, falling by scores of 4-2, 6-2 and 7-0. Even though the Avalanche are still one of the favorites to win the Stanley Cup, many fear they might not advance past the first round. The Jets clearly have their number, including the embarrassing shutout at home on Saturday. With home-ice advantage essentially on the line, the team laid an egg.

They’ll need to figure out the goaltending situation, as Alexandar Georgiev has been bad down the stretch. He was pulled for Justus Annunen after four first-period goals against Winnipeg then gave up four straight to Vegas in a devastating 4-3 OT loss on Sunday.

The Avs are limping into the postseason, losers in seven of their last 10 games. They still have stars like Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen and Cale Makar, but will need more out of their netminders. Head coach Jared Bednar has shown faith in Georgiev, but we’ll see if he eventually makes the switch to Annunen.

Regardless, the Avalanche will have to win at least one road game to make it past Round 1. That journey begins in Winnipeg in just a few days.

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