DENVER — joseph manson As a child I imagined the goal a thousand times, the shot that would win a game in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
However, he said he could never have imagined the feeling of marking it.
That changed Tuesday when the defenseman was the center of a raucous celebration after his spike shot sliced through traffic at 8:02 of overtime to give the Colorado Avalanche a 3-2 victory over St. Louis. Blues in Game 1 of the Western Conference Second Round at Ball Arena.
Game 2 of the best of 7 series will be here on Thursday.
“In my dreams, [I scored] like a hand or something,” Manson said, laughing. “It’s not about how I feel, it’s about how the whole team feels. Seeing everyone coming towards me was the best part.
“I think [defenseman Erik Johnson] he was three feet off the ground when he got to me, and that’s a big guy. He was just trying to hold me together. But it was a lot of fun and very exciting. It feels good to get that with your team. You know, that’s the best part of the playoffs, is that it’s a team effort.”
Video: [email protected], Gm1: Manson scores first NHL playoff goal in overtime
Manson, who also had the main assist on the goal from samuel girard who made it 2-1, was the most unlikely hero on a night when the Blues goalkeeper jordan binnington it was stopping just about everything in sight.
Cala Makar couldn’t get a shot past Binnington. he couldn’t either Nathan Mackinnon, gabriel landeskog, Mikko Rantanen either nazem kadri for Colorado, which outscored St. Louis 54-25, including 13-0 in overtime.
So instead it fell to Manson, who took a pass from Landeskog at the right spot and faked a shot before his attempt found its way through Landeskog and justin faulk at the top of the fold.
It was Manson’s first career playoff goal (game 27).
“That was a good fake bomb upstairs that he doesn’t get much credit for, but it was really nice,” Landeskog said. “I got the striker to bite and get a shot lane. At that point, I’m just trying to stand up front and move at the last second.”
[RELATED: Complete Avalanche vs. Blues series coverage]
In a way, it was fitting for Manson to find the spotlight, to be in the middle of the overtime celebration, after the stay-at-home defenseman had a bit of trouble after he was acquired in a trade with the Anaheim. Ducks on March 14. In 22 regular season games, Manson averaged 17:24 of ice time, but had minus-11.
“I mean, he played hard all night,” Colorado coach Jared Bednar said. “It’s a big target, you know, in a big trade. I’m glad to see him get rewarded.”
Manson’s importance may not often be celebrated in the headlines, but it’s obvious to those looking for more.
“I mean, it’s been huge for us,” Landeskog said. “He’s great on the penalty spot, he’s a physical presence back there, he’s a reassuring presence in the room. Just a really good teammate, and you can’t get enough of that.”