ColoradoAvalanche.com's "Play of the Year" competition continues with opening-round action. Each of the 27 weekly winners - as voted by Colorado's fans - are in the mix, along with five wildcards.
Cast your vote for each of the four match-ups below. In the second session of round one, we focus on the Smythe Division. Voting on this session ends Monday, April 25 at 1:00 p.m. MT.Round 1, Session 1 Winners:
#1 Jones Caps Things Off (66.39%) defeats #32 Dupuis Breaks Away (33.61%)
#16 Duchene Ties Another (78.26%) defeats #17 Porter Sets Up Hejduk (21.74%)
#9 Olver's First Goal (50.54%) defeats #24 Duchene's Blast (49.46%)
#25 Jones' Spinning Backhand (55.96%) defeats #8 A Soft Touch (44.04%)
Click here for a PDF of the full bracket
MATCHUP 5: #5 David Jones vs. #28 Matt Duchene
The second of Jones' three overtime winners in the "Play of the Year" competition goes up against a wildcard entry that consists of a give-and-go between Duchene and Tomas Fleischmann.
#5 Jones’ Second OT Winner – 1/18 vs. Vancouver (57.02% in Week 15)
netted his second overtime winner in the month of January to lead the Avs to a 4-3 win over the Canucks. With just over two minutes remaining in the extra session, Jones lunged after a Tomas Fleischmann centering feed and got off a shot that ended up being the decisive goal. #28 Dutchy Finishes Give-And-Go – 1/10 vs Detroit (40.49% in Week 14)
netted his second goal of the night following a nice give-and-go with Tomas Fleischmann. The sophomore out-muscled Detroit’s Henrik Zetterberg for a loose puck at the red line and went on a 2-on-1 with Fleischmann. After taking a pass from Duchene, Fleischmann sent it right back to his linemate for the tally.
MATCHUP 6: #21 Jonas Holos vs. #12 Erik Johnson
Holos' hit is the only body check in the "Play of the Year" competition, and its first-round opponent will be the goal that Johnson scored in his return to St. Louis. #21 Holos Hits Reddox – 3/5 vs. Edmonton (41.24% in Week 22)
Late in the first period of the Avalanche/Oilers tilt, defenseman Jonas Holos
threw a hit on Edmonton’s Liam Reddox. Reddox flew up the right wing and put a backhand attempt on net when Holos bumped him, sending Reddox (partially due to his momentum) hard into the end boards.
#12 Johnson’s Big Tally – 2/22 @ St. Louis (46.90% in Week 20)
Only days after being acquired from the Blues in a trade, new Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson
was back in St. Louis, playing against his old team. Johnson scored his first goal as an Av, netting the go-ahead tally at the 14:54 mark of the third period. With St. Louis forward BJ Crombeen draped all over him, the defenseman grabbed a loose puck and fired a wrister from the top of the left circle that found the back of net.
MATCHUP 7: #13 Peter Budaj vs. #20 Chris Stewart
Budaj's play - which was actually a series of stops against Minnesota - is just one of two saves in the competition. Budaj goes up against a goal by Stewart, the former Avs forward.
#13 Budaj Comes Up Big – 2/9 @ Minnesota (46. 60% in Week 18)
After coming on in relief of Craig Anderson, Peter Budaj stopped all seven shots the Wild threw his way. This sequence was the most impressive, as the netminder kept the Avalanche within a goal by first stopping a Mikko Koivu tip before moving left-to-right to get his blocker on Matt Cullen’s follow-up attempt.
#20 Breaking Free – 10/28 @ Calgary (42.59% in Week 3)
Chris Stewart recorded his second career hat trick in a 6-5 win over the Flames, with this goal serving as his second of the game. After some hard work along the half wall, Ryan O’Reilly caused a Calgary turnover and sent the puck to Stewart in the slot. From there, Stewart skated in alone and beat Flames netminder Henrik Karlsson with a wrist shot.
MATCHUP 8: #29 Milan Hejduk vs. #4 Philippe Dupuis
Hejduk's goal is a wildcard entry into the tournament, while Dupuis' short-handed tally is the top seed in the Smythe Division.#29 Hejduk’s Shootout Winner – 12/30 @ Edmonton (38.53% in Week 12)
The reliable veteran was once again called upon when the Avs and Oilers headed to a shootout, and not surprisingly, he came through. Hejduk skated straight in and beat Edmonton goalie Devan Dubnyk with a wrist shot to the glove side – a tally that proved to be the shootout’s only goal.
#4 Dupuis’ Shorty – 11/6 vs. Dallas (57.94% in Week 5)
Philippe Dupuis’ first NHL goal was a memorable one. With the Avs short-handed in the second period, Dupuis beat Dallas forward Brad Richards to a loose puck near the blue line and went on a 2-on-1 with Kevin Porter
. With the passing lane shut down, Dupuis elected to take the shot and beat Andrew Raycroft with a wrister.