Post-game vs San Jose - Jan 15, 2007 - Colorado Avalanche Updates, News and Game Reviews at Avs Talk

Monday, January 15, 2007

Post-game vs San Jose - Jan 15, 2007

Well, they gave a fight towards the end of the game but couldn't reocver from an early 2-0 deficit. 2 powerplay goals given up 2 1/2 minutes apart was back breaker in this one. If they hadn't given those up, and I hate playing this game but..., I absolutely believe Colorado could have walked away with at least a point.

Budaj played amazing again and looks extremely confident out there. He made some amazing cross-crease saves and had a huge pad stack save in the first. I love pad stack saves because to do a pad stack, it typically means your confidence is through the roof. Martin Brodeur is the king of the pad stack and guess who the #1 goalie in the game is! Unfortunately, when you're confronted with the #1 powerplay in the league, there's not much even a pad stack can do with that many Sharks crashing the net.

Which leads one to wonder exactly what Pierre Turgeon was thinking when he reached around and grabbed hold of that Sharks player to give the Sharks their 5th poweplay and 3rd PP goal. He actually had the audacity to argue with the referee about it. I mean, if you lay your hand on another player, grab his sweater, and're going to get a penalty. I don't know if he just got the memo about the "new NHL" but it's high-time he takes a good read through it. No, Turgeon himself didn't cost the game, but he made sure to do his part.

Milan Hejduk was flying out there tonight and man are his moves looking good. He made some amazing dangles and is able to pull off some good moves when in full stride. That's the Milan we knew and loved and it's great to see him back. He played his way back onto the top line with Sakic and Wolski. That of course meant Svatos was moved to the second line but not for his lack of trying. He has his wheels going but just doesn't seem to be overly confident right now with the puck.

I continue to be completely unimpressed with Kurt Sauer. It may be that he's trying to hard to make up for Cumiskey's inexperience but from what I've seen, Cumiskey is playing better than Sauer. Cumiskey did get his pocket picked on the 2nd Sharks goal but he was actually tossing the body around a bit and appears to be making better choices on pinching. Somebody on the coaching team definitely told him to think before pinching as a couple times you caught him starting then stopping and staying back on D.

However, as bad as I feel Sauer is playing, the coaching staff seems to feel he is either a better player than Vaananen or a better fit with Cumiskey. Vaananen saw the ice for 15 minutes which was the least ice-time of all D-men. I didn't catch much of Vaananen's play tonight but he was more of a "meh" player to me. He made a couple good hits but also had a couple cough-ups as he tried to carry the puck into the offensive zone.

So the Avalanche's defensive woes continue to cause them some grief. If the team hadn't found a goaltender to pull off some amazing saves, they would be much worse off than they are right now. As it stands, they're 4 points out of a playoff position so don't discount them yet. Brisebois may be back soon and rumblings of Leopold's return have started to surface. If this D can get healthy and have Budaj continue it's stellar play, they can easily climb back into contention.

The Good
- good fight towards the last half of the game
- not getting shutout
- Budaj's headstands

The Bad
- nearly getting shutout
- giving up early 2-goal lead
- giving up 3 PP goals

The Ugly
- Turgeon's game sealing penalty


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