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On The Road: Game Day In Pittsburgh

by Ron Knabenbauer / Colorado Avalanche

The Colorado Avalanche is on a 15-day, seven-game road trip out east, tied for the longest such roadie for the club since the franchise moved to Denver in 1995. Colorado's last seven-game trip was Oct. 8-21, 2009. is blogging about the team's events during its two weeks away from the Mile High City.

9:30 a.m.

The Avalanche's first bus departs the downtown hotel and heads toward the rink for morning skate. Traffic is light and it only takes a few minutes for the bus to make its way to the arena. The second bus left 30 minutes after.

11:30 a.m.

After the Pittsburgh Penguins conclude their morning skate, the Avs begin their practice. Colorado's session lasts about 25 minutes and other than injured John Mitchell, the entire present team skated. Mitchell is recovering from an oblique injury and took to the ice after the team's formal practice ended.

After practice, head coach Patrick Roy revealed that Ben Street was sent back to Denver after suffering a chest injury in the previous game against the Maple Leafs. Street could have surgery and might miss 3-4 months.

Roy also confirmed that Gabriel Landeskog , who is back in the lineup after serving a two-game suspension, would return to his spot on the top line with Matt Duchene and Nathan MacKinnon . Mikhail Grigorenko , who had played with Duchene and MacKinnon in Landeskog's absence, will be the third-line center while Chris Wagner will center the fourth line.

There will also be a game-time decision on defense between Nate Guenin and Zach Redmond, who will play with Brandon Gormley on the team's third D-pairing.

Read more about the Avs' morning skate.

12:30 p.m.

The team's bus leaves the rink and heads back to the hotel. After the eight-minute trip, the players get a quick bite to eat before taking a nap in preparation for tonight's game.

5:15 p.m.

Colorado's second bus leaves the hotel and heads to Consol Energy Center carrying players and staff. The coaches and other members of the team caught the first bus, which left 45 minutes earlier.

Once at the rink, the players check equipment, tape their sticks, stretch and prepare for the on-ice warmup at 6:35 p.m.

7:08 p.m.

The Avs' game against the Penguins gets underway. Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia, natives Nathan MacKinnon for Colorado and Sidney Crosby of Pittsburgh take the opening faceoff.

Matt Duchene scored two goals in the contest, but the Penguins recorded three in a 2:08 span in the second period to defeat the Avalanche 4-3. Tyson Barrie also scored for the Avs while Jarome Iginla had two assists.

Crosby scored the eventual game-winner at 11:56 of the third period. Duchene tallied his second of the night with 1:23 left to make it a one-goal game, but Colorado couldn't get the equalizer.

With his two goals, Duchene now has nine in the month of November-the most in league during the month. He also passed Hall of Famer Mats Sundin for 11th place on the franchise's all-time scoring list with 334 points and for 12th on Colorado/Quebec's all-time goals list (135).

Read more about the Duchene's performance.

10:17 p.m.

Forty minutes after the final horn sounded, the Avalanche's team buses leave the arena and heads to the airport. Due to traffic and construction on the highway, the buses take side roads to get to the airplane.

11:30 p.m.

Colorado's charter flight takes off and makes the short journey down to Washington, D.C.

12:06 a.m.

The team's flight lands in Washington and heads to the team's hotel in the city for the rest of the night. Other than few players skating, the team won't have a formal practice on Friday.

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