Avalanche Praised for Explosive Offensive Outburst in Wild Game 1 Win vs. OilersJune 1, 2022
In the time it takes you to read this sentence, the Colorado Avalanche and Edmonton Oilers may have scored two more goals.
Tuesday's Game 1 of the Western Conference Final was a track meet on ice that Colorado won 8-6. The Avalanche's attack overwhelmed Edmonton's defense from the start, and they are now three wins away from their first Stanley Cup Final since 2001.
A high-scoring game wasn't exactly surprising with the star power in a series featuring Connor McDavid and Nathan MacKinnon, but few probably envisioned five combined goals in the first period and six combined goals in the second period.
Social media could barely keep up with the pace:
Chris Fowler @cbfowler
My God, Nathan MacKinnon. Freaky, filthy display of speed and hands!! How many on the planet can make that play?!! <a href="https://twitter.com/Avalanche?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Avalanche</a> up early. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/EDMvsCOL?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#EDMvsCOL</a>
In a contest where seemingly everyone stuffed the stat sheet, J.T. Compher (two goals) and Cale Makar (one goal and two assists) stood out for Colorado, while McDavid (one goal and two assists) did for Edmonton.
The first period saw Evander Kane open the scoring just for Compher to answer in a mere 36 seconds. That was far longer than Makar needed when he responded to Zach Hyman's goal with one of his own just nine seconds later. The Makar goal was somewhat controversial because of an offside review, but it stood.
Intermission didn't cool down the respective offenses, as goals from Nazem Kadri, Ryan McLeod, Mikko Rantanen and Compher in the first seven minutes of the second period made it 6-3.
The second period also marked the end of the day for both goaltenders with Edmonton pulling Mike Smith for Mikko Koskinen and Colorado inserting Pavel Francouz because Darcy Kuemper suffered an upper-body injury. McDavid managed a goal against the backup, but the Avalanche still led 7-4 heading to the third.
Nothing about Tuesday's game was straightforward, though, so it followed that Derek Ryan and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored to make it 7-6 and put all the pressure on Colorado's side in the closing stretch.
However, Gabriel Landeskog's empty-netter ended the tension for the victors, who will look to defend home ice once again in Thursday's Game 2.