Well, the Avs did it again tonight and all you doubters can just go ahead and groove on that.
We all heard the talk at the beginning of the year; about how they’d finish dead last in the West, how there wasn’t anyone on the team that was any good and how you couldn’t enter a season with a goaltending tandem of Craig Anderson and Petr Budaj and still expect to win any significant number of games.
And with tonight’s 3-2 win over Calgary on the second night of a road back-to-back, those doubters were once again proven to be 100 percent WRONG.
Sure, the Avalanche got outshot 32-14 and only got four shots on goal in each of the second and third periods while conceding 12 each, but it’s a testament to just how well they capitalize on the chances they get that they were able to claw back from being down 2-0 just 70 seconds in (ed note: ugh, again with this?). You see that goal Wojtek Wolski scored to win the game? You don’t even need 20 shots a night when they all look like that.
Oh and look at Craig Anderson. What other goalie could they possibly need? This guy is lights. Out. Another 30 saves tonight, no big deal. The guy has a 1.97 goals-against average and a save percentage of .940. I’ll say that again. Nine Forty! Know whose stats are better than that? That’s right, nobody’s. He’s given up three goals in his last three games. How can anyone have ever doubted that this guy was ready for the big time? Anderson has proven with this first 13 games that he can go all year and not slow down.
You nerds with your computers and your stats can go take a walk. You might say that a team shooting percentage of 12.9 is unsustainable, but how can you say that when they KEEP SUSTAINING IT? We’ve not yet seen anything to indicate that the offense will slow down or that the goaltending will get worse. This is a team that’s built to stop 94 percent of the opponents’ shots for the long haul.
I saw a blog post earlier this week, I forget where, that wondered at what point Avs fans will start up the “Colorado’s for real” talk. Well I’m not an Avs fan and I’m starting it right now. These guys may have gotten outshot, outhit, outhustled and outplayed tonight against Calgary and at several other points during the season, but good teams are the ones that find a way to win. The Avs did it. And they’ve done it more than everyone else all year.
Let me know when someone stops them, because I don’t see it happening.
Buffalo 4, New Jersey 1
And you idiots wanted Lindy Ruff and Darcy Regier FIRED this offseason? Tyler Myers might be the best defenseman in the NHL right now and he’s only nine years old. Ryan Miller, meanwhile, is playing like literally the best goalie alive.
New York Islanders 3, New York Rangers 1
John Tavares had a goal. Kyle Okposo had a goal. Jack Hillen had two assists. The future on the Island is NOW.
St. Louis 5, Carolina 2
The Blues are a team that are a lot like the Avs. They got outshot 36-18, but look at that final score. There’s no arguing with results. It’s irrefutable.
Phoenix 4, Columbus 1
Another team that was picked to finish in the basement comes up big against a playoff team from last year. They didn’t even need their starting goalie to win it. Take that, doubters.
Pittsburgh 6, Montreal 1
This is just a case of the NHL bending over backwards to get its supposed biggest star on SportsCenter. Yeah Sidney Crosby had three goals, but the Penguins got so much help from the refs it’s not even funny. It’s hard to win when there are 10 guys (including both refs and both linesmen) that want Pittsburgh to win all the time.
Ottawa 4, Florida 3
The good teams make their own luck, and that’s what happened here. Panther fans can whine and cry about a puck going in off their own skate and then giving up another goal 38 seconds later, but that’s life, and the Senators are clearly the better team.
Nashville 4, Minnesota 3
Both these teams have been struggling, but it’s a sign of good veteran leadership that the Preds got back on track with this performance. Minnesota’s a great defensive team and this was a breakout game for Nashville. JP Dumont’s goal shows he might be ready to step up now.
Dallas 4, Toronto 3 (OT)
The difference here was experience, obviously. The Leafs are a team that’s finally rounding into form, but if you give Marty Turco and Jonas Gustavsson the same number of shots per night — and both teams did — then Turco’s years in the NHL paid off huge here.
San Jose 2, Los Angeles 1 (SO)
Of course the Sharks won, it’s the regular season. Let’s see them step it up come playoff time. They can’t be giving points away to division opponents like this. It’s going to come back to haunt them.