Deen’s List: Avalanche snatch defeat from the jaws of victory after giving up five preventable goals

Nov 3, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Colorado Avalanche goaltender Jonas Johansson (31) allows a goal in the third period against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Late-game heroics, strong individual offensive performances and a chance to string together three straight wins. All erased because of preventable goals.

On one hand, the late comeback was a masterful performance by the Avalanche. But on the other hand, even needing to climb out of a two-goal deficit at home when you held the same lead late in the second period is inexcusable.

There is really no other way to describe the 5-4 overtime loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Wednesday. Colorado snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.

The Avs led 2-0 with four minutes left in the middle frame. They then did just about everything wrong for the next 20 minutes — giving up four unanswered goals while recording just four shots — before they started to mount a comeback.

Even with the many, many injuries decimating Colorado’s high-end talent, the issue wasn’t necessarily the loss, but how it all unfolded in the third period.

“They just came out harder than we did,” Avs captain Gabriel Landeskog said. “Obviously, they get some bounces, we make some mistakes, and combined it’s not a good combination.”

Trailing 4-2, Colorado first pulled goaltender Jonas Johansson with just under four minutes remaining, scoring instantly off the ensuing faceoff thanks to a blast from the point from defenseman Bowen Byram that was tipped in front by teammate J.T. Compher.

The comeback was completed after another goal within the final minute. Again, thanks to a point shot from Byram, who scored his second of the game. But the Avs failed to control the play in overtime and lost on the first shot against.

So sure, Byram’s three points and all-around effort should be applauded. It’s also worth noting that Nazem Kadri and Landeskog each had three assists and Compher’s tally was his fifth goal in nine games.

But Bednar said it best when describing the goals against.

“Go back on the tape on the goals we gave up. I don’t like any of them. They’re all preventable.”

So that’s exactly what we’re going to do.

Deen’s List

Jake Bean makes it 2-1

It was far and away the Avs’ worst shift of the second period. They got hemmed in their own zone and you started to see a few guys floating around and chasing the play.

Bean picked up the drop pass from Oliver Bjorkstrand and fired it through Johansson from the left circle. The Colorado player trailing the play was Tyson Jost, but like his teammates, he was gassed.

Listen to “Preventable Goals” on Spreaker.

Cole Sillinger ties it up

Picture this. The Avalanche are up a goal, it’s early in the third period and they’re trying to hold on to win their third straight game. You’d think it would take a hard-working play from the visiting team to tie it up, right?


It took eight seconds for the puck to go from behind the Blue Jackets goal to in the back of the Avs net. They dumped the puck up along the boards, beat all five Colorado skaters to the puck, some of which looked lackadaisical getting back. Forward Jakub Voracek threw the puck at the net from the end boards and Sillinger scored about the easiest goal he may have all season.

And he would do it all again shortly thereafter.

Sillinger gets another

Eight seconds once again.

Logan O’Connor held the puck for the Avs deep in the offensive zone before it was taken away by Sillinger. The rookie moved the puck to a teammate and skated toward the net, where he accepted a pass and scored just eight seconds after picking up the puck 200 feet away from Colorado’s net.

Boone Jenner puts the Jackets ahead

Landeskog held the puck at center ice and attempted to dump it in. Instead, the Jackets pressured him, got the puck to Jenner and behind Johansson just six seconds after taking it away from the Avalanche’s captain.

What makes it more concerning was the fact that Jenner had two chances. The first was stopped by Johansson but he beat Byram to the rebound and buried that one to make it 4-2.

Overtime mishap

The Jackets held the puck for the entire 1:12 of overtime. But what allowed Bean to have the open look at Johansson was a mishap from Kadri.

Rather than follow the play, Kadri circled as if he was going to skate the other way with the puck. The mistake created separation between him and Bean, which gave him more open ice and the ability to challenge Johansson one on one.

Shot. Goal. Game over.

Aarif Deen
 is our Colorado Avalanche beat reporter. He covers Avs games live from Ball Arena and attends practices, media availabilities and other events pertaining to the Avs on the daily beat. He is also a co-host of Hockey Mountain High: Your go-to Avalanche Podcast. Deen joined Mile High Sports upon completion of his bachelor’s degree in journalism and master’s in business administration from the University of Michigan – Dearborn. Before Mile High Sports, Deen worked for the Michigan Wolverines Athletics Department as the assistant sports information director.

Follow him on Twitter @runwriteAarif

Listen to “Preventable Goals” on Spreaker.