Pre-game vs Nashville - Jan 1, 2007 - Colorado Avalanche Updates, News and Game Reviews at Avs Talk

Monday, January 1, 2007

Pre-game vs Nashville - Jan 1, 2007

Happy new year! It's a little closer to game time than usual to get the pre-game up but I decided to sleep in on the first day of the new year. As I woke up I remembered that the players weren't afforded that luxury, nor were they afforded the luxury of being at home with family and friends to ring in the new year. Sometimes you have to ensure you remember that these athletes are people too. But enough of that, they've got a game to win tonight!

The Avalanche find themselves mired in a slump right now that has seen them lose their last 3 games, including back-to-back games against the lowly Blues. Given the Avs penchant for playing up to teams better than them, Nashville could be a good fit to break that slump this afternoon. It won't be an easy task though as Nashville have won 8 of their last 10.

Patrice Brisebois remains saddled with a back injury and will be out of the lineup tonight. So that means Kyle Cumiskey gets to stay up in the big leagues. Whether he'll actually play during this time, I'm not sure. I don't even think the coaches are sure. It appears so far that Kurt Sauer has played well enough to stay in the lineup. I still don't think that should rule out playing Cumiskey for a game. They're in a 3 game losing streak, shake it up a bit and see what happens. If Cumiskey isn't playing well, shorten the bench and go with 5 D.

Joe Sakic continues on his quest to surpass Paul Coffeey for 10th all-time in scoring. Actually, he's just continuing on a quest to reach the playoffs. If he surpasses Coffey along the way, it'll be gravy for him. He needs 2 points to take sole possession of 10th and I think it's safe to say we're all rooting for him.

It seems to me like tonight is the night for some players to snap out of cold spells. Namely, Tyler Arnason and Milan Hejduk. With 0 points in the last 5 and 4 games respectively, you can't help but expect one or both to break that sooner rather than later. As I always say, the more things stay the same, the more likely they are to change. I'd also be on the lookout for Turgeon to break his 4 game point drought. You can only keep that crafty veteran off the scoresheet for so long. Maybe re-uniting him with Svatos could help kickstart that. It remains to be seen if Q agrees with the idea!

For those wondering who is in goal, as Avs fans always do these last couple seasons...I have no idea. It seems that Theodore has completely lost Quenneville's confidence in him so is likely to go with Peter Budaj. It also seems that it doesn't much matter who is put in goal but that's a different story. Budaj certainly didn't get lit up in his last 2 games, but the team wasn't able to pull out the win which is the most important thing to look for.

And if the fans didn't have enough fun saying "We ran into a hot goalie" the last couple games, tonight they'll run into a hotter one. Chris Mason has a 3-1-0 record in his last 4 and accompanies that record with a 1.23 GAA and .962 save pct. I guess they don't miss Tomas Vokoun as much as people would have expected. As long as the Avs keep shooting from the perimeter, he shall remain a hot goalie. If they bang in there and get some dirty goals, they have a chance at lighting him up.

Jordan Leopold - groin, IR
Patrice Brisebois - back, day-to-day
Brett Mclean - back, day-to-day

Tomas Vokous - thumb, IR
Scottie Upshall - groin IR

Sakic has 15 in 11, Brunette has 7 in 5, Wolski has 6 in 4, Stastny has 6 in 5.

Kariya has 6 in 4, Legwand has 5 in 4, Kimmo Timonen has 7 in 7.

Laperriere has 0 in 9, Arnason has 0 in 5, Hejduk and Turgeon have 0 in 4, Clark has 0 in 5.

Sullivan, Arnott and Dumont have 0 in 3, Suter has 0 in 4.

Peter Budaj - 9-8-1, 2.47 GAA, .907 save pct
Chris Mason - 15-6-2, 2.27 GAA, .929 save pct

Colorado - 18-18-2, 4th in NW, 9th in West
Nashville - 26-10-3, 1st in Central, 2nd in West

1 Comment:

Shawn said...

Budaj certainly didn't give up a ton of goals but the Avs need to score to get a win. Goalie situation be damned, no goals & low goals = losses.

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