NHL Playoffs: Avs win but lose Samuel Girard to injury, Blues’ Jordan Binnington hurt in collision
The NHL Playoffs only had one game scheduled for Saturday, May 21 as the Colorado Avalanche and St. Louis Blues looked to gain the 2-1 series advantage.
The Avalanche did manage to take the game but that was overshadowed by two injuries. Colorado lost defenseman Samuel Girard on a hit by Ivan Barbashev that drove him into the end boards. He was taken to the hospital and it was determined he suffered a broken sternum and will miss the remainder of the season. There was no penalty assessed on the play.
Meanwhile, the Blues goalie Jordan Binnington was knocked out 6:45 into the game on a controversial play involving Avs forward Nazem Kadri. On the play, Kadri and Blues defenseman Calle Rosen crashed into the net, bowling over Binnington.
The Blues netminder tried some drills to stay in the game but was unable to do so. After the game, Nazem Kadri was doing a postgame interview and had a water bottle thrown at him. Kadri claimed live that it was Binnington and it was confirmed by multiple reports.
“I just see a loose puck, really,” Kadri said. “I mean, I was kind of just sitting behind him and just tried to poke it with my stick, and I think their defenseman kind of collided with me and pushed me into him. So you know, had that not been the case, I don’t think I would have hit him at all. It’s a loose puck. I’m just trying to bang it in.”NHL.com
Ville Husso relieved Binnington and allowed four goals on 23 shots.
Sunday’s schedule has three games on the docket starting with the Tampa Bay Lightning versus the Florida Panthers. That will be followed by the New York Rangers against the Carolina Hurricanes and Calgary Flames versus Edmonton Oilers.
NHL Playoffs: Avalanche 5 vs Blues 2
Artturi Lehkonen scored twice Saturday to lead the visiting Colorado Avalanche past the St. Louis Blues 5-2 in Game 3 of their second-round Western Conference playoff series.
The Avalanche lead the series 2-1. Game 4 is Monday night in St. Louis.
The Blues struck first when Ryan O’Reilly won a faceoff and Colton Parayko blasted a slap shot that deflected off the stick of defenseman Devon Toews and past DarcyKuemper.
“Obviously, ‘Binner’s’ the heart and soul, playing unbelievable, but I think it kind of took the momentum away and took us a little too long to kind of get it back going again,” O’Reilly said. “Things like that happened. We’re a deep team, and we could have done a better job of getting the momentum back and adjusting.”
The Avalanche tied the game 1-1 midway through the first period moments after killing a penalty. Josh Manson came out of the penalty box to corral the puck and send Logan O’Connor to score against Husso.
The Blues nearly scored a power-play goal to regain the lead in the second period, but O’Reilly’s shot deflected off Kuemper’s glove and caromed off the left post.
Then the Avalanche moved ahead 2-1 shortly after the expiration of a power play when Kadri redirected Cale Makar’s shot past Husso. Colorado made it 3-1 when Lehkonen scored off a rush up left wing.
The Blues cut the lead to 3-2 on O’Reilly’s rebound conversion of Nick Leddy’s point shot with 30 seconds left in the period.
The Avalanche caught Husso coming out of the net for an extra attacker to make it 4-2 with 2:08 left to play. With Husso backpedaling toward the vacated goal, Nathan MacKinnon found Landeskog open on left wing for the tally.
Lehkonen’s empty-net goal with 58 seconds left made it 5-2. Kuemper made 29 saves.
–Field Level Media contributed to this article