One season after finishing last in the Western Conference, the Avalanche clinched the Central Division title on Sunday when the St. Louis Blues lost 3-0 to the Detroit Red Wings. It is the first division title for Colorado since 2002-03.
By winning the Central and finishing second in the conference, the Avalanche will play the top wild card in the West, the Minnesota Wild, instead of the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks, in the first round of the playoffs.
This is the franchise's first trip to the postseason since 2009-10. The Avalanche have not won a playoff series since 2008.
It's not always going to be pretty, especially against a great goalie [Lundqvist] like that. My goals are never how you draw them up. It's just a matter of grinding it out and trying to create havoc in front and good things happen.
— Capitals forward Jay Beagle on scoring in their Game 3 victory against the Rangers on Monday