Before Friday’s game, Colorado Avalanche coach Patrick Roy predicted that the Chicago Blackhawks would beat them in the race for the Central Division title. Then his team went out there and did nothing to prove him wrong.
Colorado was crushed from start to finish. They managed just 18 shots on the Blackhawks and were outscored 7-2. Chicago’s Patrick Sharp led the way with a hat trick on his 32 birthday.
“On a birthday where some of the guys were giving me some heat for being an old-timer, it feels even better,” Sharp told the Chicago Sun-Times’ Mark Lazerus.
Jonathan Toews also had a big night with two goals and two assists.
Jean-Sebastien Giguere, who has been superb for most of the season, couldn’t come close to saving the Avalanche tonight. The 36-year-old goaltender only managed to stop 17 of 24 shots. He was replaced in the third period by Semyon Varlamov, who turned aside all 13 shots he faced.
This is another significant setback for an Avalanche team that seems to be coming back to Earth after their 14-2-0 start to the 2013-14 campaign. They’re now 23-11-3 and in danger of letting their playoff spot slip through their fingers in the highly competitive Western Conference.
Meanwhile, Chicago is the first team to 60 points this season, although that’s by virtue of the Anaheim Ducks having the night off. The Blackhawks have played one extra game than Anaheim and hold a mere one-point lead in the battle for the Presidents’ Trophy.
Avs opted not to skate this morning after a three-day layoff, and their flight got in late. Results speak for themselves
— adater (@adater) December 28, 2013
Jonathan Toews says Team Canada not picking Patrick Sharp is "not an option" at this point. "There are no holes in his game." #Blackhawks
— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) December 28, 2013