For six days, they'll have to wait and watch and, quite frankly, pray for a miracle.

For 60 minutes, at least, the Avalanche staved off what seems inevitable.

With Friday night's 4-1 win over the Calgary Flames at the Scotiabank Saddledome, the Avs snapped a four-game losing skid and did their part in a probably-too-late attempt to earn a playoff spot in the NHL's Western Conference.

They're still in 10th place with 88 points, and they have only two games remaining and will likely slide during a six-day layoff before finally returning to the ice for Thursday's game against the Columbus Blue Jackets at the Pepsi Center. The other teams still in the race have at least four games to go.

"Now, we've put ourselves in a situation where we have to wait and see what other teams do," Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson said. "We've given ourselves a chance to make the playoffs — we just have our fate in the hands of other teams, which is disappointing. But we're still in the mix."

It sure beats the alternative.

In what was billed as a must-win for both teams, the out-of-towners were the only ones preaching positives after the game.