Peaks and Valleys: What the Colorado Avalanche have done for me lately (3/19/12)

Are you not entertained? Is this not why you are here?


This is a feature I'd like to do weekly (Mondaily?) next season, so why not start feeling it out now? I take each player on the active roster and assign an arbitrary rating of Hot, Cold, Meh, or Non-Factor, based on the team's last ten games (especially the last week's worth) that you're free to argue about. Those ratings seem pretty self-explanatory to me and over the summer I hopeto come up with some graphics for them. Without further ado, let's get into it.

Forwards

9. Matt Duchene - Meh
Freshly back from another injury, Mighty Matt had an assist in Saturday's win against the Rangers, which is his only point in the month of March. He's difficult to rate right now due to injury.

11. Jamie McGinn - HOT HOT HOT
McGinn is on a point per game pace over the last ten games, 7g 3a. He's shooting a probably-unsustainable 21.9% over that same span.

12. Kevin Porter - Limited Meh
Played only 3 games in place of Matt Duchene's ankle injury, but was good for 1-1-2 during those games.

16. Jay McClement - Hot
Silent Jay is a big part of a PK that's kept the team in games. I'll give him the Hot due to that combined with the eye test and a +3 rating in limited ES ice time. It's all about the player's role, people.

17. Chuck Kobasew - Non-Factor
Back injury has had him enjoying nachos for a few weeks now.

18. Mike Connolly - Non-Factor
Has played 2 games since he was traded and called up. 0 points and 1 shot, and frankly I'm not sure why he hasn't been reassigned yet.

23. Milan Hejduk - Cold, like Manitoba Cold
This ten-game period has seen the Duke relegated to the 4th line, though the Mueller Duchene Hejduk line has been re-united recently. Last 10 ATOI = 12:53. He has 0-1-1 in the month of March and is barely getting a SOG a game.

26. Paul Stastny- Hot
2-5-7 and a major catalyst on his SMOKING hot line with McGinn and Jones. Also seeing time on the successful PK.

27. Steve Downie - Cold
He's cooled off significantly from his hot start, with 4 points in his last 4 10 games, all assists (and 3 came in a single game, the uproarious beatdown of Minnesota). Two late penalties really putting his team up against the wall in New York pushed me from Meh to Cold.

37. Ryan O'Reilly - Meh
1-2-3 in his last 10, and making some uncharacteristic turnovers per the eye test. However he's also been good for huge, defenseman-tier minutes of late (last 10 ATOI = 20:00 and played >25m in Buffalo) and had both his assists in the last 3 games.

40. Mark Olver - Meh
Saved Giguere's shutout in New Jersey spectacularly and is his usual Little Ball of Hate self, but other than that hasn't really shown up on the score sheet (1-1-2, -2 in last ten) and played a doghouse-low 6:38 in New York.

54. David Jones - Hot
2-3-5 in his last 7. Has been excellent in his PK responsibilities after the exodus of Dan Winnik and getting to the dirty areas like he should per eye test.

55. Cody McLeod - Hot
This one is about roles again. Highlander has been exactly what we need from him and then some, providing a much-needed secondary scoring spark (2-2-4 in a 4 game span) in addition to his usual throwing around of energy.

88. Peter Mueller - Hot, with a caveat
Mueller has 1-6-7 in his last 8 games. The caveat is exactly that: it's all assists. He's shooting the hell out of the puck (2.8 SOG and 5.5 SAG per game) but is shooting 4.3% over the same span.

92. Gabriel Landeskog - Hot
Give him the Calder. 3-1-4 in his last 4, still takes almost 4 shots a game (and attempts almost 6), and does so playing the best defenses the opponent has to offer every night. GWGs against Anaheim and New York plus setting up McGinn's heart stopping GTG in Buffalo with barely any time left. Barring injury will easily reach a 50 point rookie campaign. And then the intangibles!

Defensemen

3. Ryan O'Byrne - Meh
Playing 21:13 a night fresh off an injury and is a massive part of the PK, but has struggled with the puck in his own end.

5. Shane O'Brien - Cold
He's just been less than outstanding lately, and it kinda seems to correlate with increased responsibilities in the absence of Kyle Quincey. Also hasn't so much as attempted a shot in two games.

6. Erik Johnson - Meh
I struggled with this one. He's been really good in his own end for the most part and is playing with a lot of confidence right now, but boasts only 18:49 ATOI, and that's not much different from his pre-injury numbers; also has 0 points in his last 10 despite 31 shots at net. Perhaps "lukewarm" would be the right rating here.

8. Jan Hejda - Hot
Defensive defenseman playing like the workhorse Sherman went out and got from free agency last summer, 23:27 ATOI and +1 in his last ten, and is another big PK piece, despite the fact that every time we see him out there, it's against the Ilya Kovalchuks of the league. What a beast. The Ryan Wilson Hip Check has been a pleasant addition to his portfolio over the year too.

22. Matt Hunwick - Hot
He's playing 20 minutes a night and rocks a 2-1-3, +4 in his last 10, although those minutes are pretty protected in terms of QualComp. The dude's just playing well now that he's getting his shot in the right role.

41. Tyson Barrie - Non-Factor
Yes, he is still on the active roster, despite being a healthy scratch for exactly 100% of the games he's been called up for. Why is he not getting playing and developmental time with the Monsters, exactly?

44. Ryan Wilson - Hot
5 assists and +5 in 20:05 ATOI over the last 10, though I suspect his minutes are protected as well. Could be confirmation bias but I can't remember the last time I said "Dammit WIlson."

46. Stefan Elliott - Limited Cold
Was not playing well before he became a healthy scratch for the last 5 games, when O'Byrne came back from injury.

Goaltenders - Hot

Boy is this key. Semyon Varlamov is rockin a 0.933 SV% and 1.85 GAA in the team's last 10, having played all but 2 of them, one of which was Jean-Sebastien Giguere's shutout loss in New Jersey (I see you decidin close games with a skills gimmick and I'm like, 'Eff you!").

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