Avalanche experiencing plenty of woes
Last night, the Avalanche played the Toronto Maple Leafs in a game for which most hockey fans would demand their money back. The final score was 6-0 Toronto, piling another loss onto the Avalanche.
The Leafs are openly in a rebuilding phase, so this loss at home in particular stung the Avs fan base. A lot of fingers are being pointed at captain Gabe Landeskog, who keeps using the term “embarrassing” to describe the play of his team. Also, GM Joe Sakic’s seat has never been hotter.
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The Avs have a lot of good pieces they can trade, but the question is when will they start to throw in the towel, if they haven’t already?
The hard realization for a lot of Avs fans is that they know their “core” isn’t the Blackhawks core. Many teams are modeling their franchises after the ’Hawks by stacking good young talent and locking them up after their entry-level deals expire.
The problem here is that teams are betting on young talent, and not focusing on their development. Chemistry needs to exist, not just mashing young talent together. Edmonton is a prime example of this, and the departure of Taylor Hall is a good example of how chemistry can outweigh raw talent.
Below are just a few problems the Avs have struggled with:
- Development of No. 1 overall pick/Calder Trophy winner Nathan MacKinnon
- Trading Ryan O’Reilly
- Hiring of GM Joe Sakic and his conservative approach to free agency
- The abrupt departure of coach Patrick Roy
- The $22M contract of defenseman Tyson Barrie, who has a league-worst minus-20 rating
- Inability of Gabe Landeskog to lead by example
The Avalanche have plenty of decisions to make in the coming months, and let’s hope dealing Jarome Iginla to the Hawks’ is one of them.