The Colorado Avalanche look forward to their Western Conference second-round series against the St. Louis Blues with swelled chests and confidence. Last Monday, the Avalanche became the first team to advance to the second round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs by sweeping (4-0 wins) against the Nashville Predators. The Blues followed suit with a 5-1 Game 6 win over the Minnesota Wild on Thursday.
Colorado coach Jared Bednar revealed at the press conference on Sunday how important he thinks it is that the players use the time before the start of the series to think about other things. “When you have a long period without playing, it’s an advantage if you calm down mentally, take some of the pressure off the players.”
But idleness was by no means widespread in Denver, explains Bednar: “On the one hand we used the break for regeneration, but on the other hand we also used it to analyze the blues. So we’ve had a lot to do in the last few days. We’re working on a few things to improve and we also had a lot of discussions.”
The goalkeeper is worried that the team could have rusted Darcy Kuemper none. “The break shouldn’t be a problem for us. The playoffs are the highlight of the year, everyone always gives their best,” says the 32-year-old.
The defender also agrees with the judgment of his goalkeeper Devon Toews to: “We try to prepare 100 percent.” Compare to the 2021 playoffs when the Avalanche swept the Blues into the second round. the 28-year-old doesn’t want to pull. “It was a completely different team back then,” Toews said.
In the 2021/22 regular season, the Avalanche met the Blues three times and won two games (2-1-0). None of these encounters ended with a difference of more than two goals (3:5; 4:3; 5:3). It was close and it could be the same in the second round.