Ball Arena is home to the NHL’s best home winning streak in five years.
The Avalanche’s 3-2 overtime victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday is their 15th straight triumph at home, matching the Washington Capitals run from Jan. 1 to March 4, 2017.
Colorado is just the eighth team in NHL history to accomplish the feat.
Captain Gabriel Landeskog tallied the overtime at 1:16 winner after the Avs coughed up a two-goal lead. His goal was assisted by Valeri Nichushkin, who returned after missing three games. Nichushkin also scored on the power play in the second period.
“We’ve obviously seen how big he is for us when he is in the lineup and creates scoring chances,” Landeskog said of Nichushkin. “It starts with his hard work both off the ice and obviously that translates to on the ice. So he’s a big part and he stepped up big time.”
Avs head coach Jared Bednar gave Nichushkin the nod ahead of star forward Mikko Rantanen in overtime. Oftentimes, Colorado’s first two forward pairings in OT consist of Nathan MacKinnon, Nazem Kadri, Rantanen and Landeskog. But Nichushkin earned the opportunity to get a look on the second line and it paid off.
“Val has been a beast in overtimes,” Avs coach Jared Bednar said.
Colorado also had a solid performance in goal from starter Darcy Kuemper. He stopped 28 shots to improve to 10-0-1 since returning from injury on Dec. 8.
“If we don’t get the goalie performances that we get the last three games then we don’t win all three of them, that’s for sure,” Bednar said.
The Avs’ 15-game winning streak has seen many of its star players step up. Rantanen leads the way offensively while Kuemper has had the most wins in goal — albeit the team has needed to rely on more than just those two to pull off this historic run.
Here’s how the numbers shake out during the Avalanche’s 15-game winning streak at Ball Arena, which began more than two months ago on Nov. 11, 2021.
3 — goaltenders that have manned the net for the Avalanche and earned victories. Kuemper leads the way with nine wins, followed by four from Pavel Francouz and two from former Avs netminder Jonas Johansson.
4 — games that concluded in overtime or the shootout. Along with Landeskog’s overtime tally on Saturday, Colorado has also had an overtime winner from defenseman Devon Toews against Toronto on Jan. 8 and is 2-for-2 in the shootout. Francouz stopped all six shots he faced in both shootouts combined, which came against Arizona and Minnesota in consecutive games at Ball Arena.
8 — skaters that have appeared in all 15 wins. This includes defensemen Erik Johnson, Cale Makar and Samuel Girard and forwards Andre Burakovsky, Logan O’Connor, Alex Newhook, Tyson Jost and Rantanen.
11 — goals by Rantanen, leading the charge for the Avalanche. Rantanen has had an exceptional first half of the season, leading the way with 21 goals on the season and ranks second in points with 48, trailing behind Kadri (51).
16 — assists by Kadri and Rantanen, which leads the Avalanche during this 15-game stretch. Kadri’s 16 assists have come in two fewer games, as he’s played just 13-of-15 games.
17 — power-play goals scored by Colorado. The Avs have capitalized on 27 percent of its man-advantage opportunities, led by Rantanen and his five goals on the power play. The Avalanche have also scored two shorthanded goals during this run of victories.
25 — skaters to play at least one game for the Avalanche. Colorado has needed to dress 15 forwards and 10 defensemen, which includes Jacob MacDonald and Kurtis MacDermid that have been used in both positions.
27 — points by Rantanen, which is six more than Kadri, who is in second. Rantanen has had an offensive surge at Ball Arena this season. He has 29 points in 17 games at home. He also had a team-best 36 points in 28 regular-season games at Ball Arena last season. Safe to say ‘The Moose’ loves Denver.
35 — penalty minutes, the most on the Avalanche by none other than MacDermid. Colorado’s brute has three fighting majors at Ball Arena, dropping the gloves with heavyweights Nicolas Deslauriers (Anaheim), Jordan Greenway (Minnesota) and Ryan Reaves (N.Y. Rangers).
70 — shots on goal by MacKinnon to lead the Avs. MacKinnon has scored four goals, capitalizing on 5.7 percent of his shots.
74 — goals scored by the Avalanche in 15 games. They’ve averaged a whopping 4.93 goals per game and have surrendered just 37 in the process. At least 16 players have scored for Colorado.
1. Mikko Rantanen — 11
2. Andre Burakovsky — 7
3. Valeri Nichushkin — 7
4. Gabriel Landeskog — 7
5. Devon Toews — 6
Next up: Cale Makar (6)
1. Nazem Kadri — 16
2. Mikko Rantanen — 16
3. Devon Toews – 14
4. Nathan MacKinnon — 12
5. Andre Burakovsky — 12
Next up: Cale Makar (11)
1. Mikko Rantanen — 27
2. Nazem Kadri — 21
3. Devon Toews — 20
4. Andre Burakovsky — 19
5. Cale Makar — 17
Next up: Gabriel Landeskog (17)
1. Devon Toews — plus-19
2. Mikko Rantanen — plus-19
3. Cale Makar — plus-14
4. Valeri Nichushkin — plus-13
5. Nazem Kadri — plus-11
Next up: Erik Johnson (plus-10)
1. Kurtis MacDermid — 35
2. Gabriel Landeskog — 21
3. Nicolas Aube-Kubel — 17
4. Nazem Kadri — 14
5. Mikko Rantanen — 10
Next up: Jack Johnson (6)
Shots on goal
1. Nathan MacKinnon — 70
2. Mikko Rantanen — 56
3. Nazem Kadri — 52
4. Cale Makar — 44
5. Andre Burakovsky — 35
Next up: Devon Toews (34)
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