Sloppy defensive play was the story of the back and forth 3rd period and the Avalanche took advantage with a tic tac toe passing play down low in the Jets zone to make 3-2 with just 5:28 remaining in the game. That goal, finished off by Paul Statsny would hold on to be the winner despite a late charge by the Jets. Jan Hejda had tied the game up earlier in the 3rd on a rocket from the point.
Colorado looked to have opened the scoring twice in the first. Early on Matt Duchene rang one of the crossbar, then a few minutes later Steve Downie had a open net that ended up blocked by Olli Jokinen. On both those plays the Pepsi Center rink horn went off prematurely, with some Avalanche players celebrating. On the same continuation of play as the Olli Jokinen block Matt Duchene would finally open the scoring off a rebound on a smart shot by Downie on a 2 on 1.
In the 2nd the Jets would get 3 powerplay opportunities to take the lead, but failed to convert any of them. They did score shortly after a powerplay as Blake Wheeler would sneak a long shot past Varlamov to take the lead.
Jets finished the game being outshot 36-26 and winning only 40% of the faceoffs.
1) Al Montoya was solid again tonight. Made some nice saves, look calm and composed all night. No major errors.
2) Jets struggled all night with the Avs quick transition game. The speed up front from the Avalanche is hard to contain, but the Jets constant turnover in the neutral zone (Andrew Ladd!)
3) The Jets could not deal with the Avs active D. The pinching D continually messed with the Jets by the numbers breakout causing problems getting out of their own end.
4) Olli Jokinen has looked much better this year than last. Making plays, shooting with authority, really settling into a nice role for the Jets now. Just missed a goal on a nice setup by Devin Setoguchi.
5) Devin Setoguchi had easily his best game as a Winnipeg Jet in this one. Skating really well, made some really smart plays with the puck and was oh so close to breaking out offensively. Skating to find his offensive groove.
6) Defensive breakdowns galore. The Jets were certainly creating a lot of chances, but they were allowing way too many chances. Will not win many games giving away that many chances.
7) Powerplay woes. Avs were running a very aggressive PK, adjusting well to a diamond to counter the Jets very standard umbrella set up. Jets were completely unable to move the puck quick enough to defeat it, and the standard move it to the point was much too easy to read.
8) Hit the net! The Jets missed a whole bunch of shots, and those not missed were blocked (19 blocks by Colorado). Need to get more shots through with traffic.
9) Secondary scoring. Somebody from the bottom 2 lines needs to step up with something offensively. Anthony Peluso (who was a healthy scratch today) is the only player in the bottom 6 who has scored since the season opener against Edmonton. Teams cannot survive without secondary scoring.
10) 2nd game of back to back. Backup goalie. Red hot opponent. Not the end of the world.