The Colorado Avalanche extended its point streak to 10 games and clinched a berth into the Stanley Cup Playoffs with a 3-2 overtime victory against the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday, and the team looks to continue its strong play when it wraps up the regular season on Saturday.
Colorado will play at the San Jose Sharks in its 82nd game of the year, ending a campaign on the road for just the third time in the last 13 years (also 2013-14 and 2016-17).
The Avs are 8-0-2 in their last 10 outings and 15-5-3 in their last 23. Colorado won its final six home games of the campaign, its longest home winning streak of the year, and was 11-2-1 in its final 14 at Pepsi Center.
"Just look at the last 10 games we've played and how well we've played," said defenseman Tyson Barrie. "I think we're a fast team, we're a hardworking team. We've got some guys who will make you pay if you make mistakes, and our goaltending has been outstanding lately. If you run into a hot goalie in the playoffs, you know, it can be tough to beat. We're an exciting team right now, and I'm looking forward to it."
The Avalanche had an optional practice at Family Sports Center before the squad started its trek to San Jose. The session included three forwards, three defensemen and both goaltenders. Injured forwards Mikko Rantanen (upper body) and Vladislav Kamenev (shoulder) were also on the ice in red, non-contact jerseys.
The Sharks will finish the year in second place in the Pacific Division and will face the Vegas Golden Knights in the first round of the playoffs. San Jose is sitting at 99 points (45-27-9) but is 2-7-1 in its last 10 contests.
Although a trip to the NHL's second season has already been solidified for each club, the Avs are aiming to play the same way it did before it clinched a postseason berth.
"I think it's great how well we've been playing heading into playoffs," Barrie added. "I know there's some teams that are kind of sputtering in and they're not super confident in their game, and we're really confident right now.
"We're going to treat it like we've been treating the last 10. We're going to go in and try and play our style and keep this thing rolling."
Currently in the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference, the Avalanche could move into the first position if the Dallas Stars lose their final two games of the season and Colorado defeats San Jose. Dallas plays at the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday and versus the Minnesota Wild on Saturday.