The Second Season is Slipping Away

40+ points in 27 games.  This is what it will take for the Colorado Avalanche to contend for a playoff spot.  That’s 20 wins.  Can it be done?  Yes it can.  Is this the team that can do it?  Probably not…

Currently, the Avs are playing horrible hockey.  Last night’s loss to the Minnesota Tame proved that.  They have gone 3-7-0 in their last ten and are riding a 5 game losing skid.  I have been watching this team since its inception back in 1995, and I believe their recent performances are the worst I have had the pleasure, or displeasure, to view.  They are lacking the desire and determination it takes to win games.

Simply put, the team is flat.  The offense is struggling to put the biscuit in the basket, the defense has been non-existent all year, and their goaltending is caught in a downward spiral.  The only bright spot – if you can call it that – has been their special teams play, where they are still ranked in the top ten in the league with the man-advantage.  Something has got to be done to turn things around.

So, what can they do to bring themselves back into the fold?  Good question…

Some will say that by signing Peter Forsberg the team is already going to be better.  I’m not sure that I believe it.  Foppa may be able to help out in the locker room and provide some valuable insight to all of the younger players, but until he gets out on the ice, in a full-speed game situation, no one really knows what he can bring to the table.  He hasn’t played since 2008, he is injury prone, and he won’t help the defense.  Should they use him as trade bait?  Should the team make some big moves before the trade deadline?

Well, according to some other blogs, rumor has it that the Avalanche have been inquiring about Sergei Gonchar with the Ottawa Senators.  He is a 36 year old defenseman that has been playing in the NHL for 17 years.  He has tremendous offensive upside, but he is getting older and has suffered through some tough injuries in the past few years.  It’s definitely not the direction I would go.  They need to be inquiring about big, shot blocking, hitting, bruising defensemen.  How about a player like Paul Martin from Pittsburgh, Henrik Tallinder from New Jersey, or Kevin Bieksa from Vancouver?  I’m not saying that any of those teams would be willing to give them up, but all of these guys are big, they eat up tons of ice time, and are good defensive minded defensemen.

How about bringing in a new goalie?  Say, somebody like Michael Leighton?  He’s the netminder that carried Philly into the Stanley Cup finals last year and he’s currently playing for the Adriondack Phantoms in the AHL!  In the playoffs last season, after being called in to replace an injured Brian Boucher, he went 8-3 (including 3 shut outs) and posted a .916 save percentage.  Philly is deep in goal and the Avs could probably pick him up for next to nothing.  Just a thought…

All in all, something’s gotta give.  This team will not be a contender until they are able to mix some more experience in with the youth and they start playing like they actually want to win.

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Tags: Avalanche Avs Colorado Avalanche Henrik Tallinder Kevin Bieksa Michael Leighton Minnesota Wild New Jersey Devils Ottawa Senators Paul Martin Peter Forsberg Philidelphia Flyers Pittsburgh Penguins Sergei Gonchar Trade Rumor Vancouver Canucks

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