Game 9: Mike's Recap

This reminded me of a Coach Q game.  Lots of dumping that resulted in very little chasing and anytime the Avs did get some offensive zone possession, it was all run out of the corners and rarely resulted in anything resembling a legit scoring chance. I also got the distinct feeling that the Avs were hanging on for the horn in the last five minutes of the 2nd period, while the majority of the 3rd felt like they were playing for the OT point.  We also saw fairly disciplined play by Colorado, little emotion throughout, and a third-line center in Arnason sucking talent from his linemates. 

I didn't notice him (Arny) at all last year, which was enough of a problem in an of itself, but so far this year, he has contributed nothing and often times manages to somehow NOT make plays when given the opportunity. I saw him flub a four-foot pass to Svatos last night!  FOUR FEET!  That could all be perception biased by me wanting to see someone else in his role just to see what it looks like, but when is Granato going to notice the void on the third line?

All three of those goals were pretty wretched last night.  The first one was tough to watch: how did the entire defensive corps and the third-line center forget how to play a man against the boards behind the net?  You take the body!  Arny can't contain Moss even though he had his stick on the puck twice, Salei swings and misses as Moss steps out front, and Svats bought an all-expense ticket and let his man go in front of the net.

The second goal was another case of a defenseman defensemen misplaying a man-to-man situation down low, as Clark gets beat like a rented mule off of the wall, and his defensive linemate, Foote watches Bourque walk to the side of the goal and stuff one past Budaj.  I didn't see Boots' skate come of the post in the replay, and somebody mentioned that the puck may have rode up his stick, but these short side goals, whether bad luck or poor technique seem to happen to Budaj alot.  Granted he stopped about two dozen of them last night, but this one didn't work out so well.

Goal 3 was another study in breakdowns as a lack of hustle speed from Salei results in an icing call getting washed out while Leoprone is turning double axles in the crease instead of intercepting the pass or playing Cammalleri as he skates down the slot.

Dater can lament how the second goal put the Avs out of it last night, but when you manage a measly 1 shot on goal over 25 minutes (and only 2 in the third period!), any goal (good, bad, ugly) would have done that.  His little dig about late-game goals was unnecessary:

Boods didn’t lose the game tonight, but late-game goals happened again and we’ve seen that before with him.

Like Boots has any control over when the Avs (or 'Lanche as Dater prefers to call them) decide to phone it in!  If those goals had come evenly distributed throughout the game, I guarantee that AD would have had some backhanded comment about how 1st, 2nd, and 3rd period goals are a sign of weak goaltending.

I was mightily disappointed in Colorado's performance last night, and while I didn't EXPECT a loss like our beloved AD, after the first period I wasn't expecting a win either.  The second half of the game had a real "Whoever makes the first big mistake will lose this one" feel to it.  It sucks that I was right.

Also, superstition or not, we can not blame this loss on Net Nanny's new NSFW policy.  A lack of nipples had little to do with last night's game.  It might have helped there at the end, but we can't judge Joe based on one game.  We have to give the policy a little time before we hit the panic button and start posting Youporn videos in game threads.  Basically, I'm calling for patience from the MHH faithful.

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