Avs Approaching SCF, ‘To Be the Best, You’ve Got to Beat the Best’

The Stanley Cup final is set.

The Colorado Avalanche will face the Tampa Bay Lightning in the 2022 Stanley Cup Finals beginning with Game 1 Wednesday night in Denver at Ball Arena.

The Avalanche reached the Finals for the first time since 2001, where the franchise won their eventual second Stanley Cup, while Tampa Bay returns as a two-time defending champion looking to follow through with a third straight Cup win.

Tweet from @Avalanche: It’s coming true. #GoAvsGo pic.twitter.com/hq5Y7V78M2

In preparation and after a few well-earned rest days, the Avalanche took to the ice again on Sunday at the Ball Arena for an intense session after identifying their official opponent for the Stanley Cup Finals. Colorado will look to maximize the eight-day break between games, while Tampa Bay will only have half of that time frame before game action resumes Wednesday night.

“Our mindset is just to be ready and stay ready,” says Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog said Sunday afternoon. “We use nothing as an excuse. If we get eight days off, then we get eight days off. We will make sure we rest, train hard and are ready to go. Between the St. Louis and Edmonton series, it’s only been three days and we’ve been preparing for it. That’s just the group we have, we’ll be ready for what we have to do. I think rest is a good thing in the long run. We’ll be ready for Wednesday.”

The task of taking on the Lightning is certainly a tough one considering Tampa Bay has been the NHL’s top team for two consecutive seasons. Under the tutelage of Bolts head coach Jon Cooper, the Lightning boast tremendous depth, superb goaltending with 2021 Conn Smythe Trophy winner and 2019 Vezina Award winner Andrei Vasilevskiy, and deadly offensive weapons including winger Nikita Kucherov and captain Steven Stamkos, one the best ever. around league defenseman former Norris Trophy winner Victor Hedman, a tight-fisted defense and near-unmatched experience in the group that knows what it takes to not just win but win in a row, including eleven Stanley Consecutive Cup Playoffs Streaks.

Tweet from @Avalanche: ���The toughest lap is yet to come���. It will be fun to see what we can do as a group.���#GoAvsGo pic.twitter.com/eZ3XEfipWg

“They’re back where they are for a reason, it’s a very difficult team to win against,” said Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar. “The way I see it, if you want to be the best, you have to expect that you can beat the best. They are. We’re up for the challenge. It’s going to be a long, hard fight.” Series. Two great teams get to work. We are confident in what we do. I am also sure that they will be there again [in the Final] again.”

Even with the task of taking on the two-time defending champions who are aiming for three peats — a feat not matched since the New York Islanders dynasty’s four-time Stanley Cup winners (1980-83) — the Avalanche are confident in her own team and trust in their own processes that have given them success so far in this postseason run. And they look forward to taking on the challenge they have been waiting for.

“We know where we stand,” said Bednar. “But the work is not done yet.”

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