With 8 games left in this dismal season, will our Colorado Avalanche be able to eclipse the 70 point mark??? Should they resort to tin-foil laden knuckles and bench clearing brawls? This very well could be the single worst season in Colorado Avalanche history. Scary thought, eh? Well, let’s take a look at years gone by and see how this team has done…
1995-96: 104 points | Stanley Cup Champions
1996-97: 107 points | lost to Detroit in Conference Finals
1997-98: 95 points | lost to Edmonton in the first round
1998-99: 98 points | lost to Dallas in Conference Finals
1999-00: 96 points | lost to Dallas in Conference Finals
2000-01: 118 points | Stanley Cup Champions
2001-02: 99 points | lost to Detroit in Conference Finals
2002-03: 105 points | lost to Minnesota in the first round
2003-04: 100 points | lost to San Jose in the second round
2004-05: Who cares | LOCK OUT SEASON!
2005-06: 95 points | lost to Anehiem in the second round
2006-07: 95 points | no playoff berth
2007-08: 95 points | lost to Detroit in the second round
2008-09: 69 points | no playoff berth
2009-10: 95 points | lost to San Jose in the first round
So, sitting with 64 points now, and barring a COMPLETE COLLAPSE over these last 8 games, this could be the SECOND WORST season in history. OH BOY!!! So, what the hell happened? This team averages 97.9 points per season (including the 69 point debacle of 2 years ago). They were a shoe-in for the playoffs just about every year, and they always had what it took to make things interesting. Now, they are mired in the cellar and will have to clear out some serious cobwebs before next year. So, here’s the 10 million dollar question – HOW?
This is what I think needs to happen – TRADE, SIGN, TRADE, SIGN. They need to trade their top draft picks for veteran players and/or sign a few of the big name free agents that will be hitting the market – and believe me, there are some BIG names. They have enough young blood and talent to be secure for many years to come (they’re the second youngest team in the league!). The missing ingredient to this whole mess is leadership, vision, clout and the locker room presence that only solid veterans can bring to the table. Take a look at some of the veteran names that are potential free agents at the end of this season:
Brad Richards / C / Dallas Stars, Ed Jovanovski / D / Phoenix Coyotes, Simon Gagne / LW / Tampa Bay Lightning, Radim Vrbata / RW / Phoenix Coyotes, Tomas Vokoun / G / Florida Panthers, Brooks Laich / C / Washington Capityals, Ethan Moreau / LW / Columbus Blue Jackets, Steve Sullivan / RW / Nashville Predators, Andrei Markov / D / Montreal Canadiens, Ilya Bryzgalov / G / Phoenix Coyotes, Michal Handzus / C / Los Angeles Kings, Eric Cole / LW / Carolina Hurricanes, Kevin Bieksa / D / Vancouver Canucks, Tomas Kopecky / C / Chicago Blackhawks, Alexander Frolov / LW / New York Rangers, Jamie Langenbrunner / RW / Dallas Stars, Brian Boucher / G / Philidelphia Flyers
I’m not saying that the Avs should go out and pick up an entirely new team, but some of those players seem awfully intriguing, don’t they? I know for sure that I wouldn’t mind seeing a name or two from above in an Avalanche sweater. Just Saying…
So, make sure you keep checking back… Stephen and I will be showcasing some of the above mentioned free agents, others that aren’t on my short list, and potential draft picks that the Avalanche are rumored to be interested in. Keep your heads up, Avs fans. This crap can’t go on forever, can it???