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10-23-2003, 12:21 AM
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The Avs probably have enough grit when you consider guys like Foote and Blake. However their true toughness is tied up in two players -Cummins and Worrell. The problem here is that neither can really play hockey - especially Cummins. You can't play them both without totally screwing up your 4th line. All you can really do is park one of them on the bench and wheel them out if someone begins to take liberities with your stars. If you use them much more than that you get into serious penalty problems or big trouble in your own end.

Thus it's difficult to play a gritty, four line, in your face style. What grit the Canucks do have can actually play well enough - such as May - so as not to hurt you elsewhere. I would say that, in the end, the Canucks have more grit that can actually play.

The big problem in Colorado is obviously between the pipes. From what I saw of Sauve vs. the Oilers he is totally not ready. He is down on everything and leaves the top of the net absolutely exposed. Reminded me of Brochu. He was horrible. Any game he plays in this year will be up for grabs. It won't take long your NHL shooters to get the book on this guy. That means that Aebisher will have to carry the load. That's bad news for the Avs. He is not that good to start with and he has never had to play the amount that will be required of him this year. He grind down as the year goes on. Without goaltending no team goes anywhere.

Probably PL will make a move to shore this huge deficiency. Probably the key to the Avs season is whether PL can work out a deal that brings in someone more adequate without giving up too much.

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