The Colorado Avalanche heads to the Windy City to wrap up a home-and-home, back-to-back set against the Chicago Blackhawks on Sunday evening. The Central Division rivals met Saturday afternoon at Pepsi Center, and Sunday's game marks the finale of the five-game season series between the clubs.
Colorado enters the game having won four straight contests and six of its last seven games against Central Division opponents (6-1-0). The Avalanche franchise is 68-54-16 all-time against the Original Six Blackhawks and hold a 31-32-6 record in Chicago.
The Avs are playing their first home-and-home, back-to-back since Dec. 16-17, 2013 against the Dallas Stars (not including the two games against the Ottawa Senators in Sweden in November 2017 for the NHL Global Series).
Last Time Out
Backed by multi-point efforts from Colin Wilson (one goal, one assists) and Alexander Kerfoot (two assists) and a 29-save performance from goalie Philipp Grubauer, the Avalanche came away with a 4-2 win over the Blackhawks at Pepsi Center on Saturday afternoon. Sven Andrighetto potted the game-winning tally for Colorado, and J.T. Compher also scored for the Avs. Jonathan Toews and Erik Gustafsson were the goal scorers for the Blackhawks, while netminder Corey Crawford finished with 21 saves.
What To Watch
Playing without two of its top three scorers on Saturday, the Avalanche found a way to get offense with multi-point outings from Wilson and Kerfoot. Wilson extended his point streak to a season-long three games and now has four points (one goal, three assists) over his last three contests. Kerfoot registered his 10th multi-point game of the season, giving him 25 helpers in 2018-19, which also sets a new career high for a campaign.
Scoring Early & Late
The Avs scored twice in the third period on Saturday and have now lit the lamp 98 times in the final frame this season, a new single-season Avalanche record (since 1995-96) for third-period scoring. Getting on the board early will also be key for Colorado in Sunday's contest, as it faces a Blackhawks team that ranks third in the league in first-period scoring with 83 tallies. The Avalanche has scored the first goal of the game in each contest of its current four-game winning streak.
Players To Watch
Colorado: Defenseman Samuel Girard
Samuel Girard has registered a point in each of the past two outings and has three assists in his last two games. He now has 24 points this season, surpassing his rookie season total (23) from 2017-18.
Chicago: Center Jonathan Toews
Toews scored his 21st career goal against the Avalanche on Saturday, the third-most among active skaters against Colorado. He now has 74 points this season, the second-highest total of his career (76 in 2010-11).
Sunday's game between the Avs and Blackhawks begins at 6 p.m. MT and will be televised nationally on NBCSN. It can also be streamed online at NBCSports.com or by using the NBC Sports app. The radio broadcast will air on AM 950 in the Denver metro area or online at ColoradoAvalanche.com.
The Colorado Avalanche's Danielle Bernstein contributed this story