Avalanche balance toughness and smarts as Flames ignite playoff physicality

Shut your eyes, step into the skates of an Avalanche player and contemplate your determination Monday night time in Recreation three of the Stanley Cup Playoffs: Establish dominance or turn the opposite cheek?

Colorado held a four-aim lead within the third interval of their 6-2 victory when Calgary frustration boiled over inside Pepsi Center. The Flames committed seven penalties — hooking, roughing (three) and 10-minute misconduct (three) — over a span of eleven minutes. Frustration fouls. Matthew Tkachuk tackled Gabe Landeskog to the ice. Sam Bennett sucker-punched Matt Calvert while being damaged up by an official. The listing goes on.

“That was painful,” forward Nathan MacKinnon stated. “Each whistle there was a scrum.”

Ian Cole is aware of better. The ninth-yr NHL defenseman hoisted a pair of Stanley Cups with the Penguins (2016 and ’17) earlier than becoming a member of the Avalanche this season. Cole is prepared when an opponent lashes out with hopes of a power-play inducing retaliation.

“Everyone tries to send a message,” Cole stated. “One of the simplest ways we will deal with it’s to acknowledge it, snicker of their face — don’t obviously get bullied — however let them do whatever they need to do and don’t fall into that lure. … Initially, shield yourself. Second of all, don’t take a penalty doing it, as greatest you possibly can, or at the very least getting (the penalties) evened up. I feel we truly did a reasonably good job of that.”

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The Avs have been most penalized in the third interval with five complete. None have been extra polarizing than defenseman Nikita Zadorov‘s de-facto ejection. He took down Calgary forward Garnet Hathaway with a headlock throughout a scrum and each earned 10-minute misconduct calls with 5 minutes to go.

“It’s emotional and the sport gets out of hand with power play objectives and whatnot,” coach Jared Bednar stated. “It simply seemed prefer it was chippy. So there’s some frustration there. Each staff does it. We’re just making an attempt to stay out of it and ensuring that we’re not giving them opportunities to get back in the recreation with their power play. It’s dangerous.”

The Avalanche now turns its consideration to Recreation four on Wednesday night time with the potential for an additional slugfest.

“We’ve simply obtained to deliver that very same power and that very same tempo,” ahead Alexander Kerfoot stated. “We know that the collection is way…

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