WCS Game 2: Avalanche At Red Wings, Preview And Open Thread

Gut check time.  As in, seriously, every Avalanche player should check their stomachs, ribs, and any other body parts for illness, sprains, breaks or any other kind of injury before suiting up this afternoon against the Red Wings.

Wojtek Wolski, we learned yesterday, is out for the rest of the series.  Peter Forsberg is as reliable as Republicans banning abortion or Democrats creating universal healthcare.  Don't expect him to play.  If he does, it will be a nice surprise.

His absence clears the way for some guy named Jaroslav Hlinka to play today, whoever that is.  I vaguely remember him, but it seems like years ago since we saw him on the ice.  

Dater says:

Jaroslav Hlinka needs to have the attitude that "I’m going to play the game of my life tomorrow."

If there was ever a chance for a guy to start proving that he is a PLAYER in this league, tomorrow is it.

I don’t think Peter Forsberg is going to play in Game 2, so Hlinka has the chance to come in and do something finally - and he’s got the skill to do it. This guy was the top forward in the Czech League last year. He needs to take that knowledge and translate it on to the playoff ice. He’s playing against a lot of guys that came over from Europe and have made some names for themselves, so why not him too?

If he doesn’t, he’s going to be Just Another Guy, and I think he’s better than that. But it’s up to him to prove it.

No pressure, Jaroslav.  You haven't played in a hockey game since March 30th (0g, 0a, - 1) and you'll be dumped into the second round of the NHL playoffs with no prior experience in them, a coach who doesn't like you, and a team reeling from the loss of two major offensive contributors.  No pressure.

If Hlinka gets his name on the scoreboard at all it will be a small miracle.  Let's hope the best for him.

The good news is that we'll likely see a return of the RPM Line, which had six total points in game 1, but the bad news is the Wings will do their best to shut them down.  Sakic and Brunette will have to come up big.

Don't forget the rule about the goalie: he doesn't exist until the game is over or he's in a taxi on the way to a hospital.  Don't forget.  hockeychic has been allowed to return, but I'm power-hungry and I really enjoy banning people, so don't test me.

The game starts at 1 PM Mountain time, 3 PM Eastern.  I hope I'm around for it, but I may be predisposed.  We'll see.  Don't think that excuses anyone else from the thread, though.

ESPN preview.

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