All right, I guess there's a hockey game tonight. I picked the Avs to finish dead last in the West, but instead they are leading the Northwest Division, so clearly I know nothing. Ottawa is riding one of the most important win streaks in team history, as they are currently 2-0-0 with captain Daniel Alfredsson out of the lineup. Meanwhile, Colorado is a team that must be respected, as they are getting outstanding goaltending and stellar play from their young players, especially Matt Duchene, who is not playing like a rookie at all. Ottawa is going to need another complete team game to have a chance in this one. Here's a few players who have to step up in order for that to happen, and some Avalanche players to watch as well:
Mike Fisher: He'd be listed in every preview if it were up to me. Fisher must continue to provide leadership on this team. They are winning with secondary scoring right now, but that won't continue forever. The team needs its other players to score as well.
Ryan Shannon: Two goals in two games for Shannon since getting put on a line with Kovalev and Regin. Speaking of secondary scoring, Shannon is one of the guys who needs to continue his level of play. His speed should be a big asset tonight.
Pascal Leclaire: Ottawa's top goalie played one of his best games in recent memory against Montreal. He will need to perform at that level tonight as well. He absolutely cannot give up the first goal, especially if it's a weak goal.
Milan Michalek: One goal in his last fourteen games.
Peter Budaj: I expect Craig Anderson to be rested, as Colorado plays Detroit tomorrow. Ottawa has a disturbing habit of making backups look great, but Budaj is no pushover -- he boasts a 2.22 GAA and a .930 save percentage. Look for some great saves tonight.
Darcy Tucker: This one should be pretty self-explanatory to any Sens fan.
As always, please join us in the comments section to discuss the the game, the players, the commercials, and whatever else we feel like!