The Calgary Flames ended one Colorado Avalanche road winning streak with their 4-2 win last night. It was Colorado's first loss on the road in seven games this season, but another road winning streak is still alive. Since Jean-Sebastien Giguere took the loss in Calgary, starting goalie Semyon Varlamov remains perfect on the road. He hasn't been so bad at home, either.
While Wednesday's loss was hardly on Giguere, it was further proof that Varlamov may control the playoff fate of the young Avalanche this season. He's 4-2 with a 2.41 goals-against average and .929 save percentage. Even in losses, he has been spectacular. In two losses, Varlamov has a 2.03 goals-against average and .940 save percentage.
"It gives everybody confidence, no question," Avalanche coach Joe Sacco said. "There's obviously breakdowns during the course of games for both sides. That's where you need your goaltender to step up for you. It creates confidence that filters throughout the locker room and filters to all your players."
Playing in the West, it's safe to say that most of Varlamov's current teammates weren't exactly sure what they were getting when GM Greg Sherman sent Colorado's 2012 first-round pick and a future second-rounder to the Washington Capitals for Varlamov on July 1. But he made a quick impression.
To read more about how the Semyon Varlamov trade was executed, plus ESPN Insider's complete NHL coverage, sign up today.