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yave1964

Avalanche year in review

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PRESEASON OUTLOOK The West was considered on a down cycle with it being more or less wide open with half a dozen teams in the mix. Colorado had to be considered among the teams to watch.

 

FINAL RECORD 42-20-8 92 points second in the Central. Bested the Coyotes in five dominating games, lost in seven spirited games to the Stars in the second round.

 

STRANGE STAT OF THE YEAR MacKinnon had 20 goals at home and only 15 on the road, but he had 4 GWG on the road and a grand total of zero at home. Landeskog was minus 8 at home but a plus six at home. Ryan Graves partnered with Makar and took advantage of the skill level beside him to lead all of the NHL with an insane plus 40. The Stat that jumps out to me is MacKinnon had 93 points, Makar was second on the team with 50, the difference of 43 points between first and second on the team in points was far and away the biggest in the NHL.

 

HIGH POINT OF THE YEAR The total domination of the Coyotes in the first round was through the roof, they outscored Arizona 22-8 total including 14-2 in games 4 and 5 combined. Regular season wise they had four winning streaks of 5 games or more,  The one that stands out to me is February 4th through teh ninth a five game streak in which they crushed everyone, outscoring their opponents 16-5 in that streak.

 

LOW POINT OF THE YEAR Injuries decimated the team in the series against Dallas, in game one they lost key defenseman Erik Johnson and goalie Grubauer, in the next few games they lost backup goalie Francoux forward Matt Calvert, Namestikov, Donskoi, and Tyson Jost. In spite of that they made it all the way to a heartbreaking game seven in which they lost 5-4 in overtime with Michael Hutchinson (!) in net.

 

WHAT WENT RIGHT With apologies to McJesus, MacKinnon is IMHO the best player in all of hockey, he dominated his teams stats from top to bottom. Makar was brilliant on the back end as a kid. This was an extraordinarily well balanced scoring machine, Landeskog, Kadri, Rantanen and Burakovsky all scored between 19-21 goals, while Donskoi had 16. Four others were in double digits in goals while Graves Bellemare, Jost and Nieto were right behind. Graves led the entire NHL with a plus 40. Grubauer was solid and Francouz came out of nowhere and quietly had a fantastic rookie year.

 

WHAT WENT WRONG The injuries in the playoffs derailed their season. Injuries were no stranger in the regular season, Rantanen missed 29 games, the group of Kadri, Makar, Landeskog, Calvert and Erik Johnson all missed double digit games. Really other than the injury bug nobody was particularly bad during the season.

 

FREE AGENTS Nieto and Namenstikov who were solid contributors are both likely gone. They have enough organizational depth to overcome this.

 

OFFSEASON QUESTIONS Okay, lets face it, with a healthy non Hutchinson in net, with Calvert/Donskoi/Landeskog/Erik Johnson they would have beaten the Stars. They are looking at a 'what if' scenario as they were clearly the better team and should have went on to the conference finals.

  To me, the big thing they need to do is balance out the roster a bit, MacKinnon needs help, he is a force of nature but needs Rantanen healthy and Landeskog to contribute a bit more, if this happens his upside is damn scary.

  Really, not too many questions for this club. They are built deep and hard to play against with most of their players still not peaking. This loss hurts. A lot. But they are not yet as good as they will be. The window isnt closing, it is just now opening.

  

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      PRESEASON OUTLOOK The West was considered on a down cycle with it being more or less wide open with half a dozen teams in the mix. Colorado had to be considered among the teams to watch.   FINAL RECORD 42-20-8 92 points second in the Central. Bested the Coyotes in five dominating games, lost in seven spirited games to the Stars in the second round.   STRANGE STAT OF THE YEAR MacKinnon had 20 goals at home and only 15 on the road, but he had 4 GWG on the road and a grand total

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