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Okay, I know most of the comments here are meant in good humor and with a gentle nudge to the ribs, but I want to clarify my use of certain terminology just to make sure I'm not misunderstood.  

As several illustrious MHH members have pointed out, I have used the term "must-win" on a fairly regular basis to describe the last several Avalanche games.  Those illustrious members disagree with my terminology mostly because the season is still so young.  Apparently some of you consider the last five divisional games as somehow not a big deal---as if losing all of them would have been okay.

While I understand that I could call every game just about anything I wanted and it really wouldn't matter, I don't want everyone to think I'm just throwing words around.  I honestly do consider every game against a Northwest Division rival to be a must-win game, for two reasons:

  1. Every point counts.  Anyone remember last season?
  1. Two points over a division rival counts for far more since the current eight-game-each scheduling system persists.

The Avalanche will play 32 games against division rivals this season, which is a large percentage of their schedule.  The more games they win, the better position they'll be in to make the playoffs, but at the same time, the worse off their rivals will be.

I also specifically called the last two games against the Wild "must-wins" because the Wild still had a fairly dominant lead over the Avalanche in the standings.  Sure, it's only two points now, and it was only four points then, but had the Avs kept losing and the Wild kept winning, the lead could easily be eight points.  Compound that over the course of a season and the Avalanche could find themselves again in fourth place in the division (or worse) and out of the playoffs.  I think I might just toss myself off of something very high if that happens again.

Also bear in mind that the Avalanche, prior to playing Edmonton, hadn't won a single game on the road.  That 2-4 record they now enjoy could easily be 0-6.  They could be 5-6 overall.  Those last two road games were critical to keeping the Avs in a strong divisional standing as well as building their confidence as a team.  When you've gone 0-4 on the road early in the season, the next road game IS a must-win!  

Hopefully, even if you disagree with me (which of course is allowed and encouraged), you can see my reasoning.

And if you can't, well, I guess I just can't help you, you jerks.