When Peter Mueller scored the first of his two goals Jan. 18 against Florida — his first goals since April 2010 — the moment awakened significant childhood memories for him and Avalanche teammate Erik Johnson.

Johnson, a defenseman, assisted on the goal that completed Mueller's 18-month battle with concussionlike symptoms to get back on NHL ice. And it made them feel like they were preteens back in Bloomington, Minn., where they grew up as two of the best players to play for the tradition-rich Bloomington Jefferson Hockey Club.

"It's almost like a weird dream, that you're actually playing together right now after knowing each other from such a young age," said Mueller, a forward.