Saturday, February 28, 2009

At the Game: Avs-Rangers Day

I don't get to go to Avalanche games often (especially not since the lockout), so I'm pretty psyched because this is the first time ever I'll be seeing them twice in one season. Ironically, it's also the only season I've ever seen the Avs without Sakic in uniform.

Oh well.

Go Avs.

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Friday, February 27, 2009

Thrashers, Devils, Crap

Losing to the Thrashers was pretty bad. But being shut out by the guy who is about break Roy's record after the guy hadn't played a game for 4 months? That just sucks.

I'm going to be at Madison Square Garden tomorrow for the game. I'm hoping I see at least one goal from the Avs.

With the way things have gone, I'm not 100% sure that'll happen.

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Avs-Thrashers Tonight, Stastny Returning


The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that the team has activated forward Paul Stastny from the Injured Reserve list. He is expected to be in the lineup for tonight’s game in Atlanta against the Thrashers (5:00 p.m. MT, Altitude TV).
Stastny Returns

Too little. Too late. But it's sure going to be nice to see the future of the franchise back in the lineup.


One big question on my mind:


Who is the #1 center? Wolski? Stastny? Arnason?


We can probably rule out Arnason, but the choice between Stastny and Wolski is a tough one.


Of course, Stastny is, by definition, the #1 guy. He's the most talented center in the lineup and unless there were extreme circumstances, would undoubtedly be the top liner. Interestingly, extreme circumstances have come in the form of Wojtek Wolski.


Anyone watching the Avs (or just the box scores) knows that Wolski has become a new player since he was moved back to his natural center position and over the last few weeks, Wolski has developed some chemistry with Ryan Smyth and Milan Hejduk.


What to do? Do you rock the boat and put Stastny right back with Duke and Smyth leaving Wolski with Svatos and Stewart? Or do you keep Wolski up on the top line and let Stastny get his feet wet on the second line?


________


You know, I really wanted to avoid taking a cheap shot, but I don't want Tony Granato making this decision.


We could have had this guy making it.

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Monday, February 23, 2009

"Brian Burke" and Twitter

Avs lost to Carolina 5-2 last night. I'm sure you've heard. The trade deadline is a little more than a week away and I'm assuming that we'll be getting our final looks at some players in Avalanche colors (here's to you Clarkie).

If you haven't been following it, check out this post on Puck Daddy. Interesting read for anyone interested in the high school like atmosphere of the blogosphere.

Avs in Atlanta tomorrow.
Full preview post in the afternoon.

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Friday, February 20, 2009

Jose Theodore's Newest Head Shot


Screw him. He's a tool.

Pardon my French-Canadian.

The Avs better light him up tonight. Maybe Jeff Hackett will come down and punch him in the face.

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A Quickie

I'm still alive despite my lack of posts in recent days. The Avs are still alive, too.

Since declaring the season over in my last post, the team has picked up big wins against Detroit (3-0 this season!) and against Ottawa.

Things are beginning to look up because Adam Foote is back, Paul Stastny is returning at some point on this six-game road trip, and Joe Sakic has not had to plow any snow in the last few weeks. Thank heavens.

Going into tonight's game against the red-hot Capitals (7-1-2 in their last ten), Colorado is just seven points behind Edmonton for the 8th playoff spot. The season isn't technically over, but this road-trip will have to 100% go the Avs way.

On a personal note, I'll be at the Rangers-Avs game next Saturday. Hopefully the Avs haven't gone 0-5 in that time.

Oh, one more thing. I know Avalanche fans don't see a lot of Ovechkin, but it seems like everyone in the world has seen his beautiful goal from a couple of nights ago. Incredible.

Lets go Avs.
7 PM ET.

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Saturday, February 14, 2009

It was like a kick in the nuts...

We lose to Minnesota. Great. Season over. Done. Finally.

What could possibly be worse than realizing the team you love and root for is in last place and probably out of playoff contention before March?

An entire period of hockey in black-and-white.

WHAT THE HECK WAS THAT?

Why were we paying tribute to the Canadiens? If we wanted to pay tribute, why not just show some old highlights throughout the game?

It gave me a headache. So did the game. 4-2 Habs. At least Granato took a timeout. I guess that means he'll have a job with us next season. Darcy Tucker was out on the ice for the last minute, too. I guess that means he has a job as well.

Oh yeah, Tyler Arnason scored a goal. The world has ended. My head has exploded. The end.

I'm 60% sure Tank for Tavares is on. I'll never support tanking, but it's a runaway train at this point.

The Avs won't be getting the #1 pick, but if things keep going like they are, a top 5 pick is likely.

It's going to be a long couple months.

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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Avs Done, Minny Tonight

I'm happy I wasn't home to watch last night. This eloquent game summary told me all I needed to know about what went down. Three third period goals. Really? No goals against a rookie goaltender. Really? Tony Granato=Head Coach. Really?

Avs-Wild tonight. The sad thing is, Colorado is still just three games out of the 8th spot. But don't be fooled; they still only have a 19% chance of making it.

I'll have a long post tomorrow night. It'll have something to do with the Avs. That's all I can promise.

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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Missing the Game Tonight

I'm out until 10 tonight so I'll be missing the game. Most of the time, I'll DVR it, but I don't feel like it's that important right now. If the Avs win, well, sweet..lets the good times roll. If they lose, well, I'm getting used to it.

Hejduk's playing. That's good.
Steve Mason is out for the Jackets. That's good.
The Avs are in 14th place. That's bad.

Go Avs.

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Saturday, February 7, 2009

Avs Need More "Ups" Than "Downs"

One game after a thrilling victory against Dallas (props to Cody McLeod for continuing his surprise season and scoring the GWG), the Avs got routed by the Blues tonight, 4-1.

The highlight came in the first five minutes of the second period when the Blues scored three quick goals. No timeout was taken by Tony Granato. Nothing was done to change the momentum.

To make matters worse, the Avs lost Milan Hejduk to a jaw injury early in the first period. Hopefully he's back for Tuesday's game against the Blue Jackets.

Oh yeah, the Jackets beat the best team in the Western Conference today.

Colorado can't catch a break.

You can count the bright spots on this team on one hand (Smyth, Hejduk, Stewart, McLeod) and still have a thumb left over.

Four points back of the eighth playoff spot. Twenty-nine games to play.

These "ups" and "downs" can't continue much longer. The Avs need to put together a run.

Anyone else not feeling optimistic?

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Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Debating Over Buyers and Sellers is Pointless

There has been a lot of talk this week over whether or not the Avs should be "buyers" or "sellers" at the trade deadline.

Why is it even a question?

Lets take a look at some possibilities for the rest of this season:

1. The Avs get hot, make the playoffs, and advance to the Stanley Cup Finals.

EXTREMELY unlikely. Sure, teams get on a roll every now and then, but the Avs would first have to qualify for the playoffs, then get through the incredibly tough Western Conference.(Although I bashed it yesterday, the playoff in the West is unmatched.)

Someone might now respond that if the Avs make a big move at the deadline, this is a possibility.

Unless the Avs manage to get a #1 goaltender, it doesn't matter who they get. A top forward and top defenseman won't be enough.

2. The Avs get hot, make the playoffs, and lose before the Stanley Cup Finals.

It could happen whether the Avs become "buyers" or not, but you don't play for the second round.

3. The Avs miss the playoffs.

Probably the most likely of scenarios at this point. When you're a team that isn't going to be in the playoffs, you should be a seller at the deadline.

As has been noted by many in the MSM and blogosphere, the number of sellers this year is going to be limited. There only four or five teams right now who may be willing to trade top players for picks and prospects.

The Avs should be in that group. Avs Talk has listed some of the assets other teams may want and of the names he listed, I'm hoping it's Svatos who is dealt.

I commented on it last week, but Svatty doesn't fit with this team anymore. He's a second line player, but with the emergence of Chris Stewart, I can't see him on the second line in the future.

His eleven goals are ok, but aren't close to the kind of production we expect from him.

As far as goaltenders, trade Budaj. Try to get Halak, Montoya or wait until the offseason. I don't care. Just get rid of him (or Raycroft, I'm not picky).

Dallas tomorrow.
Go Avs.

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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Avs Win, Postpone Season's End

It's pretty ridiculous when you think about it.

Even thought the Avs have been sucked all season, they're only four points back of a playoff spot. A lot has to happen, but still, four points? Really?

Does the Western Conference suck? Or is the league just that good?

Answer:

The Sharks, Wings, Flames (the Avs beat them 4-3 last night), Blackhawks, and Ducks are all good teams.

The rest stink.


Take a look:

Dallas turned around a terrible start and now find themselves with a playoff spot. The fact that this team managed to stay in the hunt tells you all you need to know about the other teams in this conference.

Minnesota may be one of the most boring teams in hockey, and it is because of this that they find themselves in the top-8. They can't score goals, they don't have their star, and Niklas Backstrom hasn't proved himself in the playoffs. Fun team, eh?

Edmonton didn't just use a two-goalie system this year, they used three. Really? Three? They're four games above .500 but dag nabbit, they're in the playoffs.

Columbus has been a surprise, but if not for Steve Mason, they'd be in the hunt for Tavares. Wait, I forget, all teams 5-15 are in the hunt for Tavares in the West.

Phoenix has been the anti-Columbus so far. The Coyotes were supposed to move on to bigger things this year. Not the case. If Shane Doan played in front of a real hockey city, maybe he'd get the attention he deserves.

Vancouver. Eight-game losing streak. Lost Luongo. Signed Sundin. I hate this team more than ever.

Colorado-Los Angeles-Nashville-St. Louis: All mediocre. Avs have given up the most goals in the West this year.

At least the Isles play in the East.


On the bright side, big win last night. Cody McLeod came to play, as did Marek Svatos. Even Tyler Arnason managed to earn a few assists (he was probably trying to dump the puck for a line change.)

They play Dallas on Thursday. Can they keep the good times going?

The way this season has gone...there's a 50/50 chance.

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