Not to be “that guy” or anything, but the Avs beating the Red Wings may have been able to look a little better in the doing. I mean, I’m not as curmudgeony as this guy, but still (Shane, I kid)
I missed the first two periods of the game thanks to a paying job (hey, if I could blog and podcast for a living, trust me, I would), but I caught the third period on. And I was worried the entire way. Here’s why:
- The Red Wings won the Stanley Cup by having a purpose to their plays. Tonight, the Avs did not. Things happened for the Avs when they had a reason to what they were doing. Instead of shoving the puck up ice just to get it a little farther up ice, a pass would tend to work out. Often, there would be a player open for a pass, but a basic clearing attempt was made that would wind up on a Red Wing stick. Lack of purpose in Avalanche gave the Wings more chances than hard work. Desperation has it’s place, but not like this.
- Look, the Wings punched a few Avs in the face and got away with it. But Lappy wasn’t just selling the punch he received, he was rolling back prices like a US auto maker (hey, the Detroit auto show was cancelled. Best part of the city taken away). And hey, a few non calls went the Avs way as well. But a punch in the face 15 seconds after the whistle doesn’t deserve a “hey buddy.” A call maybe?
- Know what to do when a top two defenseman loses his stick. Don’t make him ask for a stick. Seriously, I heard Adam Foote ask for a stick, and I was watching the game on my laptop.
- Tyler Arnason. Hit the damn net. Two successive shots go wide of the net on either side. Number one center? I’m fed up with this mouth breather.
- A Red Wing breaking up the center alone should be unacceptable. Look, they are going to complete their passes. Never assume they won’t.
I have no idea how Peter Budaj looked in the second when three goals against happened in four minutes, but I will assume he was awesome and was let down by the defense, because he was AWESOME in the third, and the shootout. Don’t call it a comeback, he’s been here for years.
The victory in the shootout was a solid victory for the Avs. Detroit and their fans will take a point out of the game as being a condolence, but in the end, it is empty to losing to an Avalanche team that isn’t that far removed from the team that was swept out of the playoffs last season. Sure, they got a point, but it doesn’t mean anything to them. The Wings will make the playoffs, we all know that. “Giving up” one point is meaningless to the Avs and Avs fans. Taking two points from the game, knocking on the playoff door, and doing it without a center worth mentioning is more important than anything the Wings get. The Wings will not need one point to make the playoffs, they will get plenty from the rest of their division. This is a victory that Avs fans should be proud of.
Nuff said. I have to go to Tempe, AZ. Wish me luck.