Power outage at home
Even at man advantage, Colo. as cold as weather PANTHERS 3, AVALANCHE 1
After serving his first penalty Friday night at the Pepsi Center, NHL legend Jaromir Jagr came out of the penalty box and nearly scored on a breakaway. It was just a close call for the Avalanche.
But the second time Jagr was penalized, the Florida Panthers broke a third-period tie with Riley Smith’s short-handed breakaway goal, and once again the roof caved in for Colorado.
Another breakaway. Another breakdown. Another loss at home for the Avs, who enhanced the league’s worst home record (410-1) by losing 3-1 to the struggling Panthers.
“Tie hockey game going into the third period at home,” Avalanche captain Gabe Landeskog said. “You can’t go out and get power plays and have them score shorthanded. … I honestly do not know what to tell you guys, other than that’s not the way we want to do it. That’s not the way it’s supposed to be done and that’s not acceptable, bottom line.”
Colorado was 0-of-6 on the power play in 11 minutes, 59 seconds with the extra attacker, and gave up Smith’s short-handed tally that broke a 1-1 tie 6:37 into the third period. Soon thereafter, Avs goalie Calvin Pickard failed to track a long shot from defenseman Michael Matheson, who made it 3-1.
Florida, which was 2-4-4 in its previous 10 games, played into overtime Thursday night at Winnipeg and took seven “tired” penalties — tripping and hooking — against the Avs. Colorado last played Wednesday, beginning a two-game homestand with a 4-3 loss to Philadelphia. The Avs’ winless streak at home is now at seven (0-6-1), with their last victory at the Pepsi Center on Nov. 15.
Colorado’s 11:59 on the power play was three times as much as Florida’s 3:59.
“That was the difference in the hockey game,” Avs coach Jared Bednar said. “The power play, 0for-6 and gave up a shorty. That is the difference in the hockey game — but the wrong way. We need our power play to win us games and tonight it was a differencemaker for them.”
Avalanche defenseman Fedor Tyutin opened the scoring 10:11 of the second period and Florida defenseman Jason Demers tied it at 16:10. The equalizer came off Demers’ skate, but officials in Toronto looked at the replay and said there was no distinct kicking motion.
The Avs depart Saturday for a two-game trip, playing at Winnipeg on Sunday and Minnesota on Tuesday.
Florida defenseman Michael Matheson gets into a scrum with Colorado forward Gabe Landeskog in front of the Panthers’ net during the first period of their Friday night game at the Pepsi Center.