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This Week In Avalanche Hockey - Nov. 17

by Aaron Lopez / Colorado Avalanche

WEEK OF NOV. 17-23
All Times Mountain

Wed, Nov. 17 vs. San Jose (7:00 p.m.)
Fri, Nov. 19 vs. NY Rangers (7:00 p.m.)
Sat, Nov. 20 @ Dallas (6:00 p.m.)

They Said It...

 “It’s one of those things. Heat of the moment, it’s late in the game, you get a chance to and it’s part of the game. It’s good to get some of that in sometimes. You get a little bit more respect from some guys.”

-Matt Duchene, discussing his first career NHL fight on Nov. 15 against St. Louis forward Vladimir Sobotka

Photo of the Week

Stat Of The Week

With an assist on Monday night against the St. Louis Blues, Adam Foote became the highest-scoring defenseman in franchise history with 254 points (56g/198a) in 928 games. He surpassed the previous record of 253 career points set by Sandis Ozolinsh.

Avalanche All-Access

This week on Avalanche All Access, Kyle Keefe and Julie Browman are hanging out at Le Central French Restaurant, where they’ll take part in a cooking competition with Executive Chef Jason DeBacker.  Also, Kyle sits down with Head Coach Joe Sacco, and Peter McNab talks about Cammi Granato in his “McNab Minute.”

Having alternated wins and losses in their past seven games heading into Wednesday night’s contest, the Avs are looking for a little more consistency. Colorado is presented with a great opportunity to show that it can be a dominant home team, as the club will take on the San Jose Sharks and New York Rangers this week at Pepsi Center after opening a three-game homestand with a victory Monday night against St. Louis.

The Avs open the week on Wednesday with their second of four meetings with the San Jose Sharks. San Jose leads the season series after coming to Pepsi Center on Oct. 21 and leaving town with a 4-2 victory after Joe Pavelski recorded a pair of power-play goals.

Next, Colorado will conclude its homestand with a Friday night contest against the New York Rangers. It will be the second and final meeting between the teams this season, as Colorado took a 3-1 decision from the Blueshirts on Oct. 18. Chris Stewart netted two power-play tallies and Daniel Winnik also scored in that contest, which was the finale of an early-season five-game road trip for the Avs.

Colorado will then immediately head to Dallas for a Saturday night tilt against the Stars. The Avs picked up a convincing 5-0 victory over Dallas on Nov. 6 at Pepsi Center, led by Peter Budaj’s 31-save effort and Kevin Porter’s first two goals of the season.

It appears as though the Avs are starting to get healthy.

After carrying a total of 30 players on its roster due to injuries as recently as last week, Colorado has been slowly but surely getting some key pieces back into its lineup.

Avalanche captain Adam Foote (head) made his return this past Saturday against the Detroit Red Wings, followed by Ryan Wilson (head) suiting up for Monday’s game against the St. Louis Blues. Forward David Koci (jaw) has been activated from injured reserve and is also available to play.

In other encouraging news, netminder Craig Anderson (knee) went through his first full practice on Tuesday, while defenseman Kyle Quincey (head) has also returned to the ice.

Colorado is still dealing with long-term injuries to Kyle Cumiskey (head) T.J. Galiardi (wrist), Peter Mueller (head) and David Van Der Gulik (knee), but the club’s injury list seems to be shrinking by the day.

-The Avalanche added some size and depth to its defense by acquiring Ryan O’Byrne in a trade with the Montreal Canadiens. Recently, O’Byrne talked about his introduction to Denver.

-The Lake Erie Monsters will remain as Colorado’s American Hockey League affiliate, with the two sides agreeing to a contract extension last week.

-Some of Colorado’s players talked about the challenge of staying on an even-keel throughout the course of the long NHL season.

-Philippe Dupuis’ first career NHL goal is the most recent winner of the Avalanche’s “Play of the Week.”

V. AROUND THE LEAGUE has posted its top goals, hits and saves from the past week.

-The preliminary rankings for the 2011 NHL Entry Draft have been released. Take a gander at the top North American and European prospects.

-Fan voting for the 2011 NHL All-Star Game is now open. Be sure to vote early and often for Avalanche players Craig Anderson, Milan Hejduk and Paul Stastny. You can also submit write-in votes, so be sure to show your Avalanche support!

-As part of the National Hockey League Officials Association (NHLOA) Zebras Care Program, Ian and Lee Dacko – Av for a Day honorees from the U8 hockey program at Hyland Hills –
had the opportunity to visit with game officials from the Colorado Avalanche/St. Louis Blues contest on Nov. 15.

-As part of the Avalanche Seats for Soldiers Program,
the Colorado Avalanche hosted four servicemen at the Avalanche vs. Blues game on November 15.

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