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-   -   What Does This Team Have To Do To Return To Greatness? (http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/showthread.php?t=1343757)

Foppa2118 02-07-2013 12:47 AM

What Does This Team Have To Do To Return To Greatness?
 
A Growing Concern

It's still early in this season, but what we've seen in the past and so far this year, I think we've seen enough to be concerned about what this group's destiny is gonna be. I can't figure out if they just need a couple things, and how likely is it that they can get those needed pieces, or if they really need to make some big changes.

Your Best Players Have To Be Your Best Players

Duchene has been great so far, which ordinarily would be a great storyline, but apparently that wasn't the thing keeping this team from taking the next step. I've always been a supporter of Stastny, and he had a decent game prior to Anaehim, though he did get a bit lucky. I hoped that would get him rolling again, but apparently it didn't. There's only so many times you can use the injury excuse IMO, and Sacco has already returned to that well again early on. Big deal, Jones isn't 100%. Big deal Downie's out, and they're missing their 19 year old captain. There's still plenty of firepower capable of playing at a higher level than they are. They're just underperforming, and not capable of rising to the challenges presented to them. We've just seen it too many times at this point, and that's the bottom line.

The concern is that Stastny, while he's been good with good players in the past, just doesn't have it in him to make things happen on his own, or make lesser players better. He just seems to have fallen into a one trick pony. He crosses the blueline with the puck the same way all the time. He makes the same half hearted swipes at the puck in close. He just doesn't have enough creativity to his game anymore. I used to think he could be a solid #1 center with good linemates, then I thought he could be a solid #2, but now he just doesn't do anything except make decent plays defensively in the neutral zone, not get in too much trouble in his own zone, and put himself in decent position every once in a while offensively, but everyone sees what he's gonna do a mile away. I really think it may be time to accept that they need someone they can rely on in his position, and that means cutting ties with him somehow. Either when he becomes a UFA, or through trade. It may just be one of those deals where he may return to form somehow, but it's not gonna be until he has a fresh start with a new team. I don't see it happening with the Avalanche.

Jones Just Can't Stay On The Wagon Long Enough to Help This Team

He's just too inconsistent, and will always at best have little nagging injury problems. I feel like he's had a million little knee injuries, and also a couple big ones. Even when he's healthy he's inconsistent, and I don't see any reason to believe he can stay healthy. To make matters worse, the only person he's had chemistry with is the guy I just dedicated the last paragraph to. He can't stay healthy, he's inconsistent, he only has chemistry with a guy that doesn't appear capable of carrying the team, and he just signed a four year $4m contract. This is cause for concern in the long term plans of this team.

Quantity Never Overcomes Quality

It's no secret to most of us, this team's biggest achiles heel is it's defense. EJ is the only person within lightyears of being considered a top pairing defenseman, and it's become painfully clear that while he's a very solid all around D, he's not going to be a big point producing defenseman. When that kind of guy is your best offensive defenseman, and the rest are either stay at home types like O'Byrne and Zanon, or two way guys that shouldn't be playing above the 3rd pairing on a playoff team in Wilson and O'Brien, or smaller PMD's that both have a plethora of holes in their game defensively, and can find a way to contribute offenisvely either in Hunwick, Barrie, and Elliott, you're obviously in big trouble.

The Avs have a bunch of D that are pretty decent. O'Byrne's a good defensive defenseman with size, though I don't know what the hell has happened to him in the last few games or so. Wilson is pretty good as a two way guy that can lay big hits as a 3rd pairing guy. Zanon should be a good stay at home type, that blocks a lot of shots and keeps things simple like Skrastins. Hejda's a bit overpaid, but can play a solid defensive role, and can move the puck out of harms way while taking the occasional shot on net. O'Brien is a rough around the edges guy that should excel as a teammate, and in a 3rd pairing role. EJ is capable of forming an outstanding top pairing with the right partner. But that's all the Avs have.

They absolutely need to find a way to bring in a competant top pairing partner for EJ. At the very least someone like Quincey without the BS. A solid two way guy. At best, a legit offensive puck mover that doesn't completely suck defensively. EJ can not do everything for this team. As much as I like his game, I think it would be foolish to expect him to be a 45+point guy and carry this team. He's not the best PP QB. He's not the best puck rusher. He's not the best shooter from the point, his shots seem to get blocked a lot. He's just pretty good offensively, is a great skater, and very good defensively. The perfect partner for someone else capable of playing a top pairing role, but not enough on his own.

And once they get that partner for EJ, they will have to find a way to get a legit #3 guy to take the next step after that and challenge for a cup. Basically this team has a long ways to go, and a lot of problems to address is what I'm saying. They've put themselves in a great position, and with some very good pieces, but purse strings, and the sheer hardship of bringing in diamond in the rough players like top pairing D, and 1st line stars to carry your team are gonna put Sherman to the test big time.

Even a Blind Man Can See

That Sacco is not capable of molding this team into a winner. Whatever deficiencies this team has, Sacco can't fix it. Whether that's his fault from a systems point of view (or lack therof) or a motiviational POV, or an accountability perspective, it doesn't matter. He just isn't capable of righting this ship, and if they don't do something soon this team is gonna get used to losing. I'm already worried guys like Stasny let losing roll off their lackadasical back too easily, and don't have that fire in them to win. Meanwhile this team's front office has pissed off a heart and soul guy that would take every loss to heart, and made him feel like he needs to dig in for an overpriced salary on a long term deal.

What the hell is this team doing? I'm starting to think all this, "Oh we'll trade Liles because Elliott and Barrie will be great players" or "Oh we don't need any real veterans on this team to calm and guide them in close games" or "Oh we can get by on trying to find solid players in trade like McGinn or Downie to carry our team" or "Hey take it or leave it O'Reilly, we don't need you that bad" is just a huge misstep in terms of re-building this team into a winner. None of that has turned this team into anything but a cause for concern at this late stage of development, and even with Duchene finally playing up to potential. Turns out Elliott and Barrie are a long ways off, if they'll make it past the Cumiskey stage at all. Turns out, having a bunch of solid quality players like McGinn, Downie, Jones, ROB, Hejda, and O'Brien aren't gonna cut it. You're still losing, and looking bad while you do it. You need some quality players, and I'm not sure how you're gonna pull it off at this point to be honest. The UFA route for a team like the Avs isn't a big draw, and they're always finish in that in between point of tanking for a franchise player, and getting another solid NHLer that won't take them over the top.

The Saviour(s)

So who or what is gonna come in and save this team? A new veteran, established coach? Will systems, and a been around the block mentality fix this team alone? Will one offensive defeseman to play with EJ fix this team by itself? If they end up tanking this season and/or win the lottery and draft McKinnon, will his passion and elite skill and game breaking ability be enough to help the team at such a young age? Can they possibly expect to fix all of these problems in such a short order of time, or can some of the problems be lessened by fixing the other aspects?

I just get the feeling this team may have to drastically shift gears here from what they were planning on building towards. Especially with this whole O'Reilly fiasco. Even if they bring him back, it's become blatantly clear that in order for Duchene to be the kind of player this team needs him to be, he has to get a lot of ice time. He has to be the go to guy, and that's just not gonna happen with a 3 center team, especially with the ice time being given to a $4M 3rd line center in O'Reilly.

Final Thought

I'll end this with a quote from Zero Dark Thirty that summarizes how the Avs front office should look at how they proceed with this group. "If you thought there was some working group coming to the rescue. I want you to know that you are wrong. This is it. There's nobody else. There's just us. And we are failing."

Freudian 02-07-2013 01:03 AM

I think Barrie could contribute if you give him a chance.

While the team has flaws, I think the biggest problem is that we never get to use the players we have. There has been no team as ravaged by injuries as Avs have been the last five years. Possibly the Islanders.

If we had O'Reilly and a healthy group of forwards, I think the team would be much stronger this year. Instead of taking advantage of line mismatches, we have to match strength against strength with Duchene's line (they have done a good job) and then roll out Olver/Sgarbossa/Hejduk/Jones etc against the weaker lines. Combine that with our defense being a non-factor offensively, we are very easy to play against.

I think we have a lot of really good pieces here, but we need to stay healthy and a few key additions (be it from our prospects or through trades).

I don't see how we keep Sacco much longer, but if he survived a season where we ended 29th, who knows.

Foppa2118 02-07-2013 01:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Freudian (Post 59209699)
I think Barrie could contribute if you give him a chance.

While the team has flaws, I think the biggest problem is that we never get to use the players we have. There has been no team as ravaged by injuries as Avs have been the last five years. Possibly the Islanders.

If we had O'Reilly and a healthy group of forwards, I think the team would be much stronger this year. Instead of taking advantage of line mismatches, we have to match strength against strength with Duchene's line (they have done a good job) and then roll out Olver/Sgarbossa/Hejduk/Jones etc against the weaker lines. Combine that with our defense being a non-factor offensively, we are very easy to play against.

I think we have a lot of really good pieces here, but we need to stay healthy and a few key additions (be it from our prospects or through trades).

I don't see how we keep Sacco much longer, but if he survived a season where we ended 29th, who knows.

I really think the missing players thing is a bunch of BS. Sure they would be better with Lando, and O'Reilly, but look at what they have on their top lines. Duchene, Stastny, Jones, McGinn, PAP. Those are pretty good players, and Mitchell has been a pleasant surprise also. Their D is basically healthy as well too outside of Wilson, and Varly except against Anaheim has been amazing.

This team has a lot of problems, and I don't think it's as simple as one thing or another, including injuries.

PAZ 02-07-2013 01:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Foppa2118 (Post 59209821)
I really think the missing players thing is a bunch of BS. Sure they would be better if Lando, and O'Reilly, but look at what they have on their top lines. Duchene, Stastny, Jones, McGinn, PAP. Those are pretty good players, and Mitchell has been a pleasant surprise also. Their D is basically healthy as well too outside of Wilson, and Varly except against Anaheim has been amazing.

This team has a lot of problems, and I don't think it's as simple as one thing or another, including injuries.

I don't. I think it basically sums up what the team is made of.

Landeskog, ROR, and Downie were the players holding the team up.

Players that are producing right now like Duchene, PAP, and to an extent McGinn are showing that they should be part of the teams building blocks.

Jones and Stastny need to go. They'll compliment the team when we're playing well and have momentum in our favor, but the moment the team struggles they're all invisible. Imo, they've played their way out of the team.

Everyone knows our defense is atrocious, no need to go there. Barrie + Elliot could be contributors in the future, but honestly leave both in the AHL for now. This season is going to be a write off, and scratching them/putting them with pylons isn't going to help their development.

This is what I personally would like to see happen.

1. Resign RoR
2. Trade Hunwick/SOB/ROB/Zanon for anything. Let Gaunce try to take the step in the NHL and see how he does. If he fails no harm, and if he plays we know he's a keeper.
3. Shop Stastny before/during the trade deadline. If we can get a top 4 d-man with potential, pull the trigger. Depending on who, this will allow us to draft a forward like McKinnon who would be able to help earlier then Jones. If not, keep him for now and draft Jones.
4. Fire Sacco (Obviously). I'd rather watch the players coach themselves.
5. Give Sgarbossa time in the top 6. So far he's played well enough to deserve it.

Mant* 02-07-2013 01:48 AM

The key to getting this team on track is to acquire actual HOCKEY players. Replace the shaved apes that are currently on the roster with HOCKEY players, and we'll be good to go.

okcomputer 02-07-2013 02:07 AM

One thing that has been bothering me is the play of Erik Johnson. I have been waiting patiently for him to turn out to be this minute eating monster who consistently puts up points but it hasn't happened.

I have noticed he does well defensively, especially on the boards, but he does make judgement errors like the bad pass to hunwick who eventually coughed it up and Benn from Dallas scored. I also often see him in front of varly with his stick in the air which I don't like. He needs to have that stick down and in lanes and also in control of his zone.

Offensively, he plays well in the transition and is good at skating it up to set the powerplay. However, in the O zone he doesn't seem like a threat. His slapshot is hard but inaccurate, he seems slower to make a move than other d-men and I don't see him take one timers.

At this point I can't see Erik Johnson being a guy like Karlsson, Suter, Oliver-Ekman Larsson, pietrangelo, etc. He needs to release faster and probably get a d partner on the point who can feed him on a regular basis.

I see I am just expanding on your point Foppa2118, and I agree with you that he needs a good d partner to take some of the load off.

shadow1 02-07-2013 02:19 AM

Greatness is more about timing than anything else.

Look at Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles; former NHL floor mats. They didn't follow the same path back to prominence, but the one thing they do have in common is that a lot of the players they'd been developing emerged at the same time.

That's how teams end up getting ahead. It's one thing to trade assets to make a big splash (see: New York Rangers); it's another to build towards a goal and then suddenly Duncan Keith is a top-10 defenseman, or Tim Thomas is an elite goalie.

But that's greatness.

General success is achieved through astute day-to-day, year-to-year operations. More than anything else, the Avalanche need to establish an identity.

You can't add a slew of young finesse forwards and compliment it with a defensive populous that's almost exclusively veteran journeymen and expect fans to have faith in the organization's direction.

Not after four years of mediocrity.

Av-merican 02-07-2013 02:38 AM

Can't be faulting the play of Erik Johnson. The guy is literally sacrificing his body to help this team win.

Johnson will never be on the level of the Pietrangelos, Webers, and Doughtys of the league. That's one reason why St. Louis deemed him expendable. Regardless, he's still a legitimate top-pairing defender a team can build around. I've said before that the Canucks have proven that you can build a top-notch defense without that coveted #1 guy who can do it all. Fact is, EJ can't do it all. His offensive upside is clearly limited, but he's as solid in the defensive zone as any blueliner we've ever had.

Going into this season, I felt like this team had a plan. I no longer have confidence in that assumption. The on-ice product looks completely rudderless, and the organization looks indecisive.

One thing that needs to STOP is the jettisoning of players who have supposed character issues. I'm not necessarily saying the trades of Wolski and Stewart were mistakes, but the Avs drafted both knowing both had suspect work ethics. In fact, that's why both were available as late in the first round as they were. But if you don't want to deal with said issues, then don't draft the damned kid in the first place.

Ultimately though, it's what everyone else on here has said that's the main problem. This organization is completely and utterly incapable of thinking outside the box. And that box is seemingly getting smaller.

forsbergavs32 02-07-2013 02:39 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PAZ (Post 59210195)
I don't. I think it basically sums up what the team is made of.

Landeskog, ROR, and Downie were the players holding the team up.

Players that are producing right now like Duchene, PAP, and to an extent McGinn are showing that they should be part of the teams building blocks.

Jones and Stastny need to go. They'll compliment the team when we're playing well and have momentum in our favor, but the moment the team struggles they're all invisible. Imo, they've played their way out of the team.

Everyone knows our defense is atrocious, no need to go there. Barrie + Elliot could be contributors in the future, but honestly leave both in the AHL for now. This season is going to be a write off, and scratching them/putting them with pylons isn't going to help their development.

This is what I personally would like to see happen.

1. Resign RoR
2. Trade Hunwick/SOB/ROB/Zanon for anything. Let Gaunce try to take the step in the NHL and see how he does. If he fails no harm, and if he plays we know he's a keeper.
3. Shop Stastny before/during the trade deadline. If we can get a top 4 d-man with potential, pull the trigger. Depending on who, this will allow us to draft a forward like McKinnon who would be able to help earlier then Jones. If not, keep him for now and draft Jones.
4. Fire Sacco (Obviously). I'd rather watch the players coach themselves.
5. Give Sgarbossa time in the top 6. So far he's played well enough to deserve it.

Agree 100%, Resign ROR, trade Staz, Jones, and a couple of our pylons for a top 4 D-man and possibly a decent scoring winger, fire Sucko and this team should be making it into the playoffs as a 6-8 seed.

It just doesn't seem like Stastny is working out with the Avs anymore, he's a solid player but he just doesn't seem to gel with any wingers. If we could package him and bring in a solid top 4 PMD we would be fine with Duchene, ROR, Mitchell down the middle.

CobraAcesS 02-07-2013 03:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by forsbergavs32 (Post 59211123)
Agree 100%, Resign ROR, trade Staz, Jones, and a couple of our pylons for a top 4 D-man and possibly a decent scoring winger, fire Sucko and this team should be making it into the playoffs as a 6-8 seed.

It just doesn't seem like Stastny is working out with the Avs anymore, he's a solid player but he just doesn't seem to gel with any wingers. If we could package him and bring in a solid top 4 PMD we would be fine with Duchene, ROR, Mitchell down the middle.

Yeah...

I think we have two choices, and that is between O'Reilly and Stastny as our second line center. Duchene has matured quite a bit and even has room to grow, and it's obvious. I mean McGinn and PAP playing with him look like first like players. Hes obviously knows how to use his linemates when they can be USED.

The Avs need to accept and trust that Duchene can be our #1 center, it's still a bit of a risk but one I think we need to take. Because Stastny isn't going to come out of the woodwork and be our #1 in the event OF... (You know?)

Ok option #1 go with Stastny as our #2 center,

In order for this to work we need to trade O'Reilly for someone like Yandle, at the latest possible point in time (basically at the deadline). Then TANK and get another scoring winger for Stastny like MacKinnon. Our top 6?

MacKinnon/Barkov/Drouin - Stastny - Landeskog

McGinn - Duchene - Parenteau

Third line center should be Bozak, we all know hes not going to sign with the sinking ship that is TOR. He loves Colorado and would be a perfect fit on our third line.

Yandle - EJ

The rest...

Ok option #2 trade Stastny...

This is going to be more difficult because we need to do it right away or hope that Stastny finds a way to produce enough to still give teams the idea that he can be a #1 center. If we trade Stastny we are going to get have to add.

I do think we could pitch Stastny + Sgarbossa to a team like Phoneix and still land Yandle potentially. Ok so it looks like this...

McGinn - Duchene - Parenteau

Landeskog - O'Reilly - Downie

Again Bozak as our third line center...

Yandle - EJ

The rest...

The reason I don't add one of the high draft picks here is because I am not sure that if we traded Stastny quickly for a #2 that we would draft in the top 5 or even top 2. Adding a #2 defender would really fix a LOT of problems offensively and defensively.

It also depends on how quickly Landeskog returns as to how good of a pick we really get in both scenarios. We could obviously not end up with a top 3 pick regardless, which makes trading Stastny the safest option to be honest. Just because of the known chemistry between O'Reilly and Landeskog.

I can see why Avs management has not jumped just yet, there really is some serious questions to be answered before making a decision on which one to keep.

The other possibility and it's a risky one, is to attempt to reignite Stastny by trading O'Reilly for someone like Ryan. In this event I would imagine we either make the playoffs or just miss, obvious getting no help on the back-end. But we would have a pretty sick top 6 group.

Landeskog - Stastny - Ryan

McGinn - Duchene - Parenteau

Of course then we are left to HOPE that within the next two years, Siemens is able to step in and take on that LH #2 role. Obviously continuing to try and fill the holes on defense with guys like Strait or whatever until that happens.

Obviously this works with more than just Ryan, hes just the easiest to plug in since Stastny loves playing with him and has proven chemistry with him as well. Anaheim needs a top 6 center as well, Koivu is playing well but Anaheim has to respect the fact that they are not going to be able to rely on their senior Fin duo much longer.

They also have the prospect depth at wing to replace Ryan with Palmieri and Etem.

There are flaws with every route but I think the biggest mistake Avs management could make is to hold pat and not make some sort of move similar to this. I just don't see us filling out three centers with quality talent, AND getting a top pairing defender.

Without a true top pair, we need to be an offensive juggernaut and make our top six seriously dominant. Avs management needs to pick a direction and pick which player they are going to put their chips down on.

Unfortunately I don't think we are going to find out the answer to which direction IF ANY they are going to take for a little while, at least not in the next week or two anyways. It's obvious they want all the questions answered before committing to two of the centers we have, but sometimes indecision hurts worse in the end. The answers may come to late...

Hennessy 02-07-2013 05:38 AM

Draft Sakic, Sundin, Nolan and Lindros. Trade the latter 3 for key components and picks. Acquire Roy. Spend the next few years replacing parts as needed until the wheels finally come off a decade later.

So much of success comes from luck and circumstance. Which isn't to say you can't make your own luck or that smart decisions are useless. But it's not like the Avs have been dumb. OK, they probably should have blown it all up a lot sooner than they did instead of trying to win around a zombie core by adding whatever pieces looked good at the time. But you can understand their delay, having it in their head that they were still a winning organization and Sakic still being out on the ice. But they've done a much better job of facing reality since. They've gotten a couple of high draft picks, have been bringing in a lot of young talent -all of which hasn't panned out, but no team is going to bat .1000 on that - and obviously now have a group that they can build around.

Does that guarantee success? No. The group might suck. Or injuries might ruin them. Or they might have difficulties in luring pieces to Colorado. But the franchise is headed in the right direction. I get that it is frustrating to see them lose, but it's a little unfair to lose patience with them when they're still a very young team and are absolutely devastated with injuries at the moment.

My timetable for them to turn it around has, for a while now, been "after the new CBA". And here we are. With the lockout taking so much of the season away, and with the O'Reilly saga and the injuries, I'm willing to write things off this year. But don't forget that the Avs were making plays on high-priced FA's last summer. They, too, are ready to come out of their shell and start to get serious about expectations and assets.

In short, I think the team is headed in the right direction and on a very good timeline. There have been some frustrations and setbacks, but I don't think it is cause for alarm.

Finally, in regards to Sacco: he was brought on as a coach for his way with younger players. If he turned out to be a winner, all the better. But first and foremost he's a rebuild coach who is good with youth and team-building. I have no doubt that, once the Avs take the next step, Sacco will not be joining them.

They'll go back and get Granato.

SoundwaveIsCharisma 02-07-2013 06:29 AM

EJ really doesn't have the luxury of jumping up into the play and relying on his D partner to cover for him. It seems that the offensively inept players on the blueline are always the ones that want to lug it up. Last night alone EJ had to break up two breakaways and it's becoming a game by game thing where he has to cover for the mistakes of this terrible defense. I don't expect offensive output out of him, especially not in the system that the Avs are in now. Hell, they can barely get offense out of their forwards.

Colorado Avalanche 02-07-2013 07:28 AM

I think the best idea is to trade Stastny, either this or next year's trade deadline. He would get us nice return, there are always a lot of desperate teams looking for good #2 center. We should get good defenseman for him or at least with good potential.

or we trade O'Reilly, If we can't sign him, but I don't want to do that. Stastny should be first to go. He can go to St.Louis with his buddy Stewart.

Colorado Avalanche 02-07-2013 07:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hennessy (Post 59212415)
Draft Sakic, Sundin, Nolan and Lindros. Trade the latter 3 for key components and picks. Acquire Roy. Spend the next few years replacing parts as needed until the wheels finally come off a decade later.

So much of success comes from luck and circumstance. Which isn't to say you can't make your own luck or that smart decisions are useless. But it's not like the Avs have been dumb. OK, they probably should have blown it all up a lot sooner than they did instead of trying to win around a zombie core by adding whatever pieces looked good at the time. But you can understand their delay, having it in their head that they were still a winning organization and Sakic still being out on the ice. But they've done a much better job of facing reality since. They've gotten a couple of high draft picks, have been bringing in a lot of young talent -all of which hasn't panned out, but no team is going to bat .1000 on that - and obviously now have a group that they can build around.

Does that guarantee success? No. The group might suck. Or injuries might ruin them. Or they might have difficulties in luring pieces to Colorado. But the franchise is headed in the right direction. I get that it is frustrating to see them lose, but it's a little unfair to lose patience with them when they're still a very young team and are absolutely devastated with injuries at the moment.

My timetable for them to turn it around has, for a while now, been "after the new CBA". And here we are. With the lockout taking so much of the season away, and with the O'Reilly saga and the injuries, I'm willing to write things off this year. But don't forget that the Avs were making plays on high-priced FA's last summer. They, too, are ready to come out of their shell and start to get serious about expectations and assets.

In short, I think the team is headed in the right direction and on a very good timeline. There have been some frustrations and setbacks, but I don't think it is cause for alarm.

Finally, in regards to Sacco: he was brought on as a coach for his way with younger players. If he turned out to be a winner, all the better. But first and foremost he's a rebuild coach who is good with youth and team-building. I have no doubt that, once the Avs take the next step, Sacco will not be joining them.

They'll go back and get Granato.

Very good points. I think short-term we just have to be patience. We have to wait one or two more years to be in real "win-mode". Get us #2 defenseman, draft another good player. Bang. One or two years. That's when our team should be ready to compete IMO.

WarriorOfGandhi 02-07-2013 07:53 AM

in a cap era, the only way to succeed is to have quality talent on cheap contracts so that you can afford to supplement such players with more talent.

-LA had both goalies and their bottom six/bottom pairing on ELCs so that they could afford to pay Kopitar, Doughty, Richards, and now Carter
-Boston had quality depth players like Seidenberg, Marchand, Ference, Peverley making between two and three million so that they could afford to pay Chara, Bergeron, Krejci, Thomas
-Chicago had Toews, Kane, and Keith on ELCs so that they could overpay for Hossa and Campbell (it bit them in the ass later, but a ring is a ring)

Colorado either needs to spend a lot for depth and complementary players when their impact players in Duchene, EJ, Varly are making half of what they could in the near future, or they need to spend a lot for impact players and rely on prospects successfully fulfilling depth roles while they still cost next to nothing. Since Colorado has done well in attracting free agents who are relatively underpaid (PAP, Mitchell, Giggy, Anderson) and their drafting has been quite successful, the answer is quite simple -- management needs to spend to the cap.

Commander Enigma 02-07-2013 07:55 AM

The main thing is, as an organization, they have to get back to the Stanley Cup being the goal every year. That's not the case now, and it hasn't been for a while. Even though under the current makeup the team is an extreme long shot to compete with a Cup, every off season the goal has to be getting them as close as they can be. The organization doesn't care about that anymore.

Colorado Avalanche 02-07-2013 07:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shaman Jones (Post 59214197)
The main thing is, as an organization, they have to get back to the Stanley Cup being the goal every year. That's not the case now, and it hasn't been for a while. Even though under the current makeup the team is an extreme long shot to compete with a Cup, every off season the goal has to be getting them as close as they can be. The organization doesn't care about that anymore.

They have been re-building, of course Stanley cup is the ultimate goal. Give it year or two.

Lonewolfe2015 02-07-2013 08:02 AM

There's a hundred things that could be done, but it all starts with one decision.

Can Sacco. The longer we let it linger the more I feel Sherman is willing to throw away another season in favor of a high draft pick.

Colorado Avalanche 02-07-2013 08:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lonewolfe2015 (Post 59214357)
There's a hundred things that could be done, but it all starts with one decision.

Can Sacco. The longer we let it linger the more I feel Sherman is willing to throw away another season in favor of a high draft pick.

Even I don't mind losing 48 regular season, IF we get GREAT defenseman for it.

Problem is, when we get Lando, O'Reilly back I don't think we can challenge for the #1 pick anymore. These guys play too hard every game, so we really have to suck next 10 games to get #1-#3 pick..

cgf 02-07-2013 08:50 AM

Step 1: Stay Patient and let Greg from Accounting and Pracey continue bossing it
Step 2: Get a real coach
Step 3:
Step 4: Profit!

cgf 02-07-2013 08:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shaman Jones (Post 59214197)
The main thing is, as an organization, they have to get back to the Stanley Cup being the goal every year. That's not the case now, and it hasn't been for a while. Even though under the current makeup the team is an extreme long shot to compete with a Cup, every off season the goal has to be getting them as close as they can be. The organization doesn't care about that anymore.

No. That type of thinking is why this was so ****ed when Sherm the Werm got the job. The goal needs to be winning a cup as soon as possible and winning as many of them as possible. That takes a long term plan when you're building a team from scratch, and barring Staz and Duke's corpse, that's what we've had to do.

cgf 02-07-2013 09:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Av-merican (Post 59211111)
Johnson will never be on the level of the Pietrangelos, Webers, and Doughtys of the league. That's one reason why St. Louis deemed him expendable. Regardless, he's still a legitimate top-pairing defender a team can build around. I've said before that the Canucks have proven that you can build a top-notch defense without that coveted #1 guy who can do it all. Fact is, EJ can't do it all. His offensive upside is clearly limited, but he's as solid in the defensive zone as any blueliner we've ever had.

********. When EJ gets pissed off and just goes out and imposes his will all over the ice he's as unstoppable as anyone in the NHL rushing the puck up ice and joining the forwards down low. He makes good smart passes and that shot is massive if he ever learns to make space for it to get to the net. Problem is EJ needs a partner he's not cleaning up for, someone to free him up to go out and get involved in the play, and someone who has the skills to create space for EJ's shot. He needs his suter, and then he can be even scarier than Weber.

Colorado Avalanche 02-07-2013 09:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cgf (Post 59215921)
No. That type of thinking is why this was so ****ed when Sherm the Werm got the job. The goal needs to be winning a cup as soon as possible and winning as many of them as possible. That takes a long term plan when you're building a team from scratch, and barring Staz and Duke's corpse, that's what we've had to do.

Exactly! Very well said. I dont want same to happen our team as Calgary. They are in their last legs and still desperately trying to win Stanley. This rebuild shouldnt be rushed!

AslanRH 02-07-2013 09:17 AM

Some things can be taken from the model previously built when the Avalanche were winning division titles year after year. While you can't copy the same model with the salary cap, etc, and injuries have decimated this team which makes it look far worse than it is, certain things can and should be addressed rather quickly to get this team back on the path forward.
1) Coaching: I understand the Avs theory that hiring within makes for more consistency with the systems, familiarity,etc especially with our young players, but this is obviously not working. Time for a change to a more proven NHL experienced coach [Jacques Martin, Lindsey Ruff (if fired), Ron Wilson, etc]

2) Defense. The Avs focused a lot of resources on Defense actually, and I think it is important to remember that many of our young guys are still in their early 20s. The acquisition of a legitimate top 3 defenseman would go a long way to helping this team. (ie: Bourque, Blake) EJ, Hejda, and Wilson seem to be great fits as say the #1,3/4 & 4/5, and the younger guys should be able to fill the 4/5 and 6 spots by the start of next year, It is urgent that the Avs find a #2.

3)Forwards. While I believe the top 6 looks pretty good if not really good when they are healthy,its the bottom 6 that concerns me more. The bottom 6 used to be made of guys that were PK players and defensive shut down checkers surrounded by grit/muscle and young developing players (Yelle, Podein, Messier, Hinote, Moore, etc). These guys ate up the ice time and wear and tear that it seems to be going to the top 6 now. The Avs need to find at least 3 players who can take more of this role than what they have now. The 2nd line should not be the shutdown line anymore.

4)Ownership/Front Office. Management needs to get behind this team. Not saying they aren't now, but they need to SHOW it to the fans and the other players/teams. This cone of secrecy is frustrating for fans who are trying to support a struggling team. While I understand that the team wont and shouldn't spend up to the cap every year, and that many of those in the front office are far smarter than I am regarding the business and development of a hockey team, it would be nice to know more of what their plans, objectives, goals, and reasoning. I'm not asking for complete transparency, but some information would be nice.

I could be way off base here, but as a fan of this team for 20+ years, I am just getting too frustrated with its state right now. And this comes from a 25+ year Oakland Raider Fan, I'm used to awful team management and performance. I'll stay loyal to this team as well, but I hope the suffering will end soon.

Huis Clos* 02-07-2013 09:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SoundwaveIsCharisma (Post 59212925)
EJ really doesn't have the luxury of jumping up into the play and relying on his D partner to cover for him. It seems that the offensively inept players on the blueline are always the ones that want to lug it up. Last night alone EJ had to break up two breakaways and it's becoming a game by game thing where he has to cover for the mistakes of this terrible defense. I don't expect offensive output out of him, especially not in the system that the Avs are in now. Hell, they can barely get offense out of their forwards.

Last night EJ jumped into the play and helped create/lead a three-on-one only to see Mitchell handcuff him with a pass instead of shooting. EJ can put up points with talent around him. He just doesn't have the elite offensive abilities to create points without any help.


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