DENVER, CO - JANUARY 04: Head coach Patrick Roy of the Colorado Avalanche leads his team against the San Jose Sharks at Pepsi Center on January 4, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
KUSA - Waiting to play again for nearly two weeks following a three game losing streak - including a loss to the National Hockey League's third worst team - would have been difficult. The Avalanche won't have to worry about that though.
Colorado held off the New York Islanders Saturday night just before the Avalanche will send their four Olympians off to Sochi.
Goalie Semyon Varlamov (Russia), forwards Matt Duchene (Canada), Paul Stastny (USA) and Gabriel Landeskog (Sweden) will represent their respective countries over the next week.
"I'm very proud of my players," head coach Patrick Roy said. He played for Canada in the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan but failed to win a medal after getting ousted in a shootout in a semi-final game against the Czech Republic.
"I wish good luck to the players that are going to Olympics. Hopefully our guys are going to have a good ten days off and be ready to work when we come back," he continued.
The Avalanche head coach has said that he's wary of the extended break due to the amount of energy player exert - he himself found it difficult to put in the effort to try to win an medal and then make a playoff push just weeks after.
"It'll be a good challenge for us," Roy asserted.
Colorado has 79 points - good enough for 5th in the Western Conference - and Roy is proud of their performance for the first year head coach so far. With just a handful of games remaining following the break (the Avalanche next game is against the Los Angeles Kings on Feb. 26) can't have a drop-off if they intend to make a significant playoff push.
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