One Wish for the Colorado Avalanche


Today starts the 12 Days of Avs Christmas, and we’re going to start it with a poll. If you could have one wish come true for the Colorado Avalanche, what would it be?

A New D-Man

With the start that the Avalanche had to their season, it seems there are a lot of options. One that commonly gets mentioned is shoring up the defense.

Head coach Patrick Roy has stated more than once that defense is not a big issue for the team. At the beginning of the season, he said, “We’re not that far off on defense.” He also has praised the defense after games, even losses.

However, Avalanche fans look at the fact that Avs goalies face more shots than any other team barring three. They’d like to see some of those shots limited by way of a new defenseman, a big name player.

The Colorado Avalanche already have their cornerstone defenseman in Erik Johnson and their offensive defenseman in Tyson Barrie. Zach Redmond shows some promise. However, beyond that, the team does look a little thin.

A Healthy Goalie

Semyon Varlamov was the hero of last season. He was seen as a real shut-down goalie. Indeed, he was even nominated for the Vezina Trophy.

This season he looks human more than superhero. He’s been fighting injury all season, though. He’s only played in 15 out of 29 games, and his save percentage has been a decent .907.

A lot of Avalanche fans would love to see him healthy again and hopefully back to his top form. However, rookie Calvin Pickard is making quite a name for himself, too.

Scoring Powder for the Top-Six

The Colorado Avalanche have an impressive top two lines consisting of top notch talent: Matt Duchene, Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog, Ryan O’Reilly, Alex Tanguay, Jarome Iginla.

All but one (O’Reilly) are first-round draft picks, and three of them went top-three (MacKinnon, Landeskog, Duchene). Two won Calder Trophies for rookie of the year in recent years (Landeskog and MacKinnon). One of them has his name on the Stanley Cup (Tanguay), and two of them have Olympic gold medals (Iginla, Duchene).

So, why the heck have they had such difficulty scoring this season? Actually, never mind why — a lot of the Avs Nation would simply like to blow some scoring powder on them so they’d return to expected form.

A Confidence Pill

Coach Roy has stated the young players don’t have a lot of confidence in themselves right now. Everyone from O’Reilly to Johnson has agreed.

Some players, such as Barrie and Johnson, are meeting expectations this year. Some, such as Pickard, are exceeding them. Imagine if all the players could find that confidence from last year, that inner fire that made them think they could win even of they were down by two goals late in the third. That confidence came through in the second game against the Winnipeg Jets. It reared its head in the game against the Philadelphia Flyers. But it’s been absent a lot of the time, too.

Imagine if the Avalanche players could take a confidence pill between periods. Not a drug — a magic pill that reminded them of how awesome they are. (I really do NOT mean ecstasy!)

A Different Division

The Western Conference is the more challenging of the two. It takes more points to make the playoffs in the West than in the East. And the Central Division is the more challenging of the two divisions in the West.

The Avalanche would be in better shape if they were in any other division. If they were in the Eastern Conference, they’d be only six points away from a wild card spot instead of 10. If they were in the Metropolitan Division, they’d be middle of the pack with their record. Same with the Pacific Division. But in the tough Central Division, they keep trading places with the Dallas Stars for last place.

Wouldn’t it be nice if the Avalanche could be in the Metropolitan or even Pacific Division?

So, Avs Nation, on this first day of the 12 Days of Avs Christmas, what one wish would you bestow upon the Avalanche?