Colorado Avalanche

NHL Trade Recap: Can Erik Johnson Help the Colorado Avalanche To the Playoffs?

SUNRISE, FL - FEBRUARY 8: Erik Johnson #6 of the St. Louis Blues skates prior to the NHL game against the Florida Panthers on February 8, 2011 at the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida. The Blues defeated the Panthers 2-1. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)
Joel Auerbach/Getty Images
April WeinerCorrespondent IFebruary 23, 2011

Erik Johnson was sent to the Colorado Avalanche along with Jay McClement in exchange for Chris Stewart and Kevin Shattenkirk.

In just their second game for the Avs, Johnson and McClement returned to St. Louis to face the Blues.

The Avalanche arrived in St. Louis in the hopes of ending their 10-game losing streak. Luckily, Johnson was able to help them seal the deal by scoring his first goal as a member of the Avalanche.

Johnson's goal ended up being the game-winner in the 4-3 contest.

Upon his return in St. Louis, Johnson said that his goal is to "make Doug Armstrong regret trading me." Johnson maintained that he respects the St. Louis Blues organization and Armstrong, but at the end of the day, that's his goal. (Find Johnson's full comments here.)

The Colorado Avalanche are currently sitting in the second-to-last spot in the Western Conference. St. Louis is sitting one spot and four points ahead of them. What better way for Erik Johnson to make the Blues regret trading him than to finish the season in a better position with his new team than his former team?

It would be even better if the Avs could make the playoffs.

The Avs have 22 games left in the season. Colorado will play 18 games before returning to St. Louis to play the Blues on April 5. The Avs have beat the Blues seven straight times. If they could get on a roll, they could set themselves up to beat the Blues in the standing race.

The playoffs, on the other hand, may be more difficult for the Avs to achieve. Just beating St. Louis in the standings race should be enough for Johnson—this year at, least.

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