The Colorado Avalanche are on the backburner this offseason, so I thought I would write about them.
I ask this question: Are they going to get anywhere this season, or are they in the rebuilding process?
This season, I see the avalanche getting into the playoffs, but leaving right away. I am an Avalanche faithful, but I see them going nowhere.
If Sakic signs a deal, then they have a good leader and excellent scorer. Even though he will never be the player he was years ago, he would be a great asset to the team.
Then there's the Forsberg subject. Forsberg will be getting ankle surgery in the upcoming months, which means he will not play until December. Should the Avs keep him around? Is he worth what he’s getting paid?
True when he’s healthy, he’s an excellent player to have on your side—but how often is he really healthy? And even when is, how long can he stay that way? This is a burning question in Colorado right now.
It's going to be hard to replace Andrew Brunette, but it is possible. Ryan Smyth is one of the finest to play the game, and any team with Smyth at the helm is going far. He has excellent hockey sense, and is one of the best front-of-the-net players to ever touch the ice. If he stays healthy, he is a great forward to have around.
One excellent pick up for the Avs this season is Darcy Tucker. Tucker is one of the best all-around players in the NHL. No, wait, I change my mind—he is the best all-around player in the NHL. He can score, he can hit, he agitates, and he creates plays. He is an amazing player.
Paul Statsny is another great addition for the Avalanche. One of the best younger players in the league at present, the six-foot, 200-lb. forward posted 71 points in 66 games last season. Don’t be surprised if you see him in a lot of peoples hockey pools—and on the top 10 scoring list this upcoming season.
With Svatos, Wolski and Hejduk up front as well, I think this team has the strength and power to go somewhere, as long as they stay healthy and upbeat. We just have to remain hopeful that Sakic will re-sign.
Foote, Leopold, Hannan, and Salei are a solid four-man group of excellent defensemen. True Foote and Salei are of the older generation, but they have the experience and grit every team needs.
Hannan and Leopold are just two great defensemen that you can depend on. Hannan is not afraid to give the body, which is what you need in today's NHL
With Theodore gone, the goaltending this year is again in limbo. Can Budaj take it all on his shoulders? Or will Raycroft, the bust in both Boston and Toronto, be able to help take some pressure off this year?
I think the Avs need a better goaltender. Any ideas who they should get?
Well in spite of it all, I think the Avs could make the playoffs, and maybe get into the second round if lucky. They just need more experience in net, and maybe more scoring from the point.
Maybe they will surprise us all and make it to a Cup final, or be the worst team in the NHL—but as for me, I remain an Avalanche hopeful.
(The Blackhawks will always be number one, though.)