The first second-round series of the 2022 NHL playoffs is set. It will be the Avalanche and the Blues meeting in the Western Conference.
The Avalanche made easy work of the Predators in the first round, sweeping Nashville in four games and beating the Preds 21-9. Colorado scored at least five goals in three of those contests and posted a seventh twice.
Cale Makar led with 10 points in four games, including the OT winner in Game 2. The Avs went on to win the series without starting goaltender Darcy Kuemper injured in Game 3. But given the extra days off, Kümper is likely to be ready for Game 1 against the Blues.
St. Louis defeated Minnesota in six games. After going 2-1 in the series, the Blues won three straight to eliminate the Wild.
The Blues received hat-tricks in two separate games, once from David Perron and once from Vladimir Tarasenko. After rolling in the net with Ville Husso in the first three games, coach Craig Berube switched to Jordan Binnington, who went undefeated and helped the Blues advance.
The two Central Division opponents meet just a year after the Avalanche defeated the Blues in the first round of the 2021 playoffs.
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Here’s everything you need to know about the series between the Avalanche and the Blues.
Key Storyline: Is this the year the Avalanche will finally make it through the second round?
The Avalanche just rode through the first round like they were playing a Monday night men’s league. Where have we seen this story before?
Oh that’s right. The last three years have been the same old songs and dances: breeze through the first series and then fall into the second round.
The Avalanche have lost a first-round game together in the last three postseasons, but have stumbled in the following series every year. It’s an unacceptable pattern for a side that have become perennial cup favourites.
This year is no different. Colorado went into the season a favorite to win the Stanley Cup Finals and remains so after finishing at the top of the West. Can they finally exorcise their second round demons and make it to the Western Conference Finals?
(Disclaimer: It was actually four years of first-round wins followed by a second-round elimination, but in the 2019 playoffs, the Avs were No. 8 in the West, beating the Flames by No. 1, according to expectations weren’t there this season.)
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Avalanche vs. Blues Schedule, TV Network
|date||Side? site||time (ET)||TV|
|Tuesday, May 17th||in Colorado||9:30 p.m||TNT, Sportsnet, CBC, TVA Sports|
|Thursday, May 19||in Colorado||9:30 p.m||TNT, Sportsnet, CBC, TVA Sports|
|Sat 21 May||in St Louis||8 p.m||TNT, Sportsnet, CBC, TVA Sports|
|Mon, May 23||in St Louis||9:30 p.m||TNT, Sportsnet, CBC, TVA Sports|
|*Wed 25 May||in Colorado||open||open|
|*Fri May 27th||in St Louis||open||open|
|*Sun 29 May||in Colorado||open||open|
Avalanche vs Blues Odds
Sports Interaction Odds
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Avalanche vs Blues Prediction
It’s easy on paper. The Avalanche are the stronger team. I might give the blues the advantage just because they have a deep group, but the blue avalanche line is so much better than its counterpart.
Most importantly, the Avalanche have a true #1 goaltender and the Blues don’t. Given how often Avalanche scores, I have a feeling the Blues goalies will be mixing and trying to figure out which one is hot or not, and that’s going to make it difficult for St. Louis to build momentum in the series.
The Blues are making it tough, but the Avalanche are finally climbing that mountain and getting past the second round.
Forecast: Avalanche in six