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Colorado Finishes Solid Road Trip

by Aaron Lopez / Colorado Avalanche
Almost any way you slice it, the Avalanche’s five-game road swing was a rousing success. With tonight’s 4-0 win over the St. Louis Blues, the Avalanche finished the trip with a 3-1-1 record, gaining seven of a possible 10 points.

Even when something negative happened on the trip, there always seemed to be a silver lining that followed.

The Avs found themselves trailing nearly the entire game during their Dec. 2 contest against the Florida Panthers, but somehow rallied back to earn an improbable point after scoring twice in the final minute with netminder Craig Anderson pulled for the extra attacker.

When Anderson was injured during the overtime session of that game in Florida, fellow goaltender Peter Budaj came in and has played three solid games since.

Milan Hejduk missed the first two games of the trip due to injury, but Matt Duchene stepped up while the veteran was sidelined and scored a pair of goals in each of those contests. As a testament to his play, the rookie was named the NHL’s Third Star of the Week on Monday.

And that’s even before you mention the spectacular play of second-year forward Chris Stewart, who had two goals and an assist Monday against the Blues. Check back to on Tuesday afternoon for an in-depth examination of Stewart’s recent play.

The Streak Continues
A number of Avalanche players have been on hot streaks recently, but none have been as consistent over the past month as Wojtek Wolski.

The left winger extended his point streak to seven games (2g/8a) with three assists in tonight’s victory over the Blues. It matches the longest point streak for an Avalanche player this season, as Ryan O’Reilly also recorded a point in seven consecutive games from Oct. 12-24.

But Wolski’s solid play hasn’t simply been confined to the past week or two. The forward has at least one point in 11 of his last 12 games (2g/12a) and 14 of his last 16 contests (3g/14a) dating back to Nov. 6.

The Zabrze, Poland native is now within striking distance of his career-high eight-game point streak, set Oct. 13-Nov. 1, 2007.

Tucker Reaches Milestone
Darcy Tucker has experienced his share of bumps and bruises during the course of his NHL career, which began with a three-game stint with the Montreal Canadiens during the 1995-96 season.

Tonight, Tucker played in his 900th career NHL game, an impressive feat by any means, but even more so when you consider the type of physical game the 5-foot-10, 178-pound winger has employed throughout his time in the league.

Never one to shy away from playing the body, Tucker becomes the 353rd player in NHL history to reach the 900-game plateau. The other NHL players to reach that milestone this season are San Jose’s Patrick Marleau, Vinny Prospal of the New York Rangers and New Jersey forward Jamie Langenbrunner
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