Turnovers are always costly, but doubly so in the postseason. The Avalanche learned that the hard way in Game 5 when a 2-0 third period lead evaporated in 184 seconds.
Andre Burakovsky’s pass in the Avs’ zone was blocked by Mattias Janmark, which led to Alex Tuch‘s batted in goal. Two minutes later, Gabriel Landeskog‘s offensive zone pass went behind Ryan Graves, allowing William Karlsson to lead an odd-man rush that resulted in an unattended Jonathan Marchessault tying the game.
Heading into the third period, the Avalanche were not only controlling the scoreboard, but 5-on-5 play as well. It was a better showing than in Games 3 and 4, two losses that saw head coach Jared Bednar call them out for a poor performance.
“I loved the way we played tonight, I loved it,” Bednar said. “I thought we were the aggressors, we were on our toes, we were playing to win the hockey game, we played to our identity. The three goals they got — even in the third period I had no problems with it — except for the turnovers. I don’t think we had a lot of turnovers tonight, but we had three and they all, that I know, led to their goals against. They were all turnovers.”
Mistakes are magnified this time of year, and those three cost the Avalanche after they took back control of the play after the Golden Knights owned it earlier in the series.
Per Natural Stat Trick, Colorado had the 5-on-5 advantage in possession (58%-42%), shot attempts (62-44), and high-danger chances (12-6) on Tuesday. There was a lot to like in Game 5 on their end, something that can help the confidence as they face elimination for the first time this postseason.
“That’s the way we got to play, that’s how we’re effective and we’re just going to have to replicate that,” Landeskog said. “Obviously it’s a tough building, but this is the playoffs and now we lost one at home and we got to go on the road and win one.”
AVALANCHE VS. GOLDEN KNIGHTS (VGK leads 3-2) – series livestream link
Game 1: Avalanche 7, Golden Knights 1
Game 2: Avalanche 3, Golden Knights 2 (OT)
Game 3: Golden Knights 3, Avalanche 2
Game 4: Golden Knights 5, Avalanche 1
Game 5: Golden Knights 3, Avalanche 2 (OT)
Game 6: Thurs. June 10: Avalanche at Golden Knights, 9 p.m. ET (NBCSN)
*Game 7: Sat. June 12: Golden Knights at Avalanche, 7:30 p.m. ET (NBCSN)