Conference III Championship Tale Of The Tape: Colorado at Nashville, 25 March 2014

by J.R.

Tonight, the Predators put up their first Conference III Belt defense of their third run with the strap against the visiting Colorado Avalanche, the only team that’s yet to win the belt.

It’s getting down to brass tacks time as we race to the end of the year and the determination of who carries the title in the off-season (I’ve made an executive decision to stop the belt with the end of the regular season, as the playoffs are their own reward).

Can Nashville build another long run with the title? Can Colorado finish strong and win their first belt?

Let’s take a look.

 

The Challenger: Colorado!

The Challenger: Colorado!

The Champion: Nashville!

The Champion: Nashville!

 

The Belt!

The Belt!

 

Tale of the Tape:

Colorado Avalanche Nashville Predators
44-21-6 Record 31-31-10
5-4-1 Last 10 5-5-0
Patrick “La Colère” Roy Coach Barry “No Neck No Mercy” Trotz
216 Goals For 173
194 Goals Against 213
Matt “Big Dutchy” Duchene (67) Points Leader Shea “Captain Fear” Weber (46)
Ryan “The Prodigal Son” O’Reilly (26) Goals Leader Craig “Honey Badger” Smith (20)
Semyon “The Savior from Samara” Varlamov Goaltender Pekka “The Eraser” Rinne
None (yet) Threero Eric “Not Nys” Nystrom and Richard “Dicky” Clune
Nathan “Big Mac” MacKinnon Rookie To Watch Seth “The 28th Amendment” Jones and Calle “Ironhook” Jarnkrok
6’1″ Average Height 6’1″
203 Average Weight 203
0 Title Belts Won 3
0-2 as Challenger, 0-0 as Champion Record In Belt Matches 1-2 as Champion, 3-3 as Challenger

 

Nashville is coming off a shutout in Chicago, the team’s first clean sheet since November 27 and Pekka Rinne’s first blank since March 12, 2013. The Avs arrive in Nashville losers of three straight (though Colorado did get a point out of Winnipeg).

As noted above, things are starting to get interesting looking forward. If Nashville retains, the Preds will defend again Friday in Dallas. If Colorado retains, they’ll hold the Belt until April 5 against St. Louis, which is Colorado’s final Conference III game of the season, thus a win against the Blues would assure the Avs lone run with the Belt is the last one of the season.

But there’s a lot of work to be done before then. Puck drops at Bridgestone Arena tonight at 7 (6 Mountain).

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