Post-game vs LA - Dec 10, 2006 - Colorado Avalanche Updates, News and Game Reviews at Avs Talk

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Post-game vs LA - Dec 10, 2006

Wow. Yep, again, I start a post-game with a "Wow" but this time it's a bad one. What a poor showing by the Avs. They missed the "play a full 60 minutes" key to this game. They came out strong in the first and walked away with a 2-0 lead. Then the Kings came back and tied it up at 2, only to have Colorado go back up by one before the end of the 2nd. Then in the 3rd all hell broke loose. Giveaways, penalties, leaving pucks sitting in the slot, beating the Avs to the puck in all cases.

This team has a terrible time holding a lead and it's likely due to inexperience. Well, that's what I'd like to think. I'm not sure what else you could chalk it up to b/c they give up lead after lead, time after time and it's frustrating. We need something to stabilize the defense to not panic in our offensive zone. We also need someone to make sure the players don't give up on plays and want to have that puck on their stick. It's the same thing I preach in volleyball, you have to WANT that puck (ball, whatever).

There were a couple good news items in this game. Laaksonen got his second of the season and broke his goalless and pointless drought. Also, Avery finally dropped them with Laperriere. From the sounds of it, Lappy got the better of the fight but he didn't beat the holy hell out of him like most people hoped. Avery got booted from the game for not having his jersey strapped down which was comical. Guess he had decided that he was going to finally go with Lappy and wanted every advantage he could get.

Now for the bad. Hold your breath because this might take a while! I guess we'll start with the 2nd period breakdown. You simply can NOT let a team come back and tie up the game early in the 2nd period. I don't care what it takes but you have to shut them down. Actually, I'll rephrase, you can't let the team build up momentum, and that includes letting them score two goals! The Kings took it and ran with it from there. The Avs defended a bit but ultimately, fell over at the end.

Penalties and the penalty kill. Sigh. You can't take 7 penalties in a close game like this. Even if the opposing team doesn't score, it gives them momentum and tires out the team. In the Avalanche case however, the penalty killers probably don't get too tired since they play the most passive box I think I've ever seen. I don't know if they just figure "Hey, let them toss it around and Theo will save it" but that's no way to play. Put some pressure on them and force them to make hard passes. You might get a bit out of hustle up and get back in position! It's a penalty kill, it's not supposed to be easy.

5 goals. Count em up because that's a lot. Even in the "new" NHL. I haven't seen all of them so I'm not about to comment on whether it was a "should have had it" goal or not. I saw the first one, it was a flub shot from in close. Those are tricky. The second goal, that was a good shot, but Theo was too deep in his net. I thought he was going to challenge shooters? Once I see the other three, I might edit in some thoughts.

In Theodore's defense, he made some huge saves. I recall 3 breakaways and many 2-on-1s which ended with a save. Without him, the game could have easily been 10-4. Another defensive breakdown that should not be hung squarely on the goalie. I don't care if you question a goal or two but come on, this was a terrible team effort in the 2nd and 3rd. I hope Q comes back with Theo in net for the next game, but we all know that isn't going to happen. Heaven forbid a goalie get a chance to string together some starts.

The Good
- Laaksonen scoring
- Turgeon getting first of the season (on a nice steal)
- Theodore making some huge saves

The Bad
- Theodore forced to make huge saves
- letting in 5 goals
- giving up nearly 40 shots
- losing the lead
- not playing hockey

The Ugly
- Sean Avery's attitude

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