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What does Holøs have to do?

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Like many of you, I’m not only disappointed with Jonas Holøs’ reassignment to Lake Erie, I’m confused.  The Norwegian defenseman has appeared to be one of the stronger players on our blue line, especially when compared to the Kyles.  But let’s face it folks: Quincey’s not going to the AHL any time soon, and Cumiskey’s still out, so it was either going to be Holøs or Wilson.  With Wilson’s waiver status the way it is, I don’t think any of us can be surprised the ø had to go.  So now the question is what he will do when he is called back up (and we all know he will be given the Avs’ propensity for injuries).  I took a look at what call ups did last year and so far this season to either earn their spot or get shipped back to Cleveland, and a pretty clear pattern developed. 

So this is what happened in the 2009-2010 season:

The keepers: these are the guys who ended the year with the Avs.  
Player GP G A +/-
Chris Stewart 77 28 36 +4
Brandon Yip 32 11 8 +5
Chris Durno 41 4 4 +3
Ryan Stoa 12 2 1 -3
Ryan Wilson 61 3 18 +13

The not quites: these are the guys who ended the year with the Monsters.
Player GP G A +/-
Philipe Dupuis 4 0 1 +1
Brian Willsie 4 0 0 -1
Tom Pressing 4 0 1 -6
TJ Hensick 7 1 2 0
Derek Peltier 3 0 0 0
Wes O’Neill 2 0 0 +1
Justin Mercier 9 1 1 +2
Darren Haydar 1 0 0 1
Kevin Porter 15 2 1 -4

In any given stint with the Avs, players received on average 4 games to prove themselves.  If they showed some life - and if space in the roster permitted - they stuck around.  How long was up to them and their continued level of play.

We all know how Stewie’s two-game visit to Ohio ended up: he became Chris Goddamn Stewart, that’s what.  Yip, Durno and Wilson also showed enough to Sacco to stay a mile high. Stoa? Well, he enjoyed the revolving door, never really stringing enough good games together to make it to the roster on more than a warm-body basis.

Looking at what the Erie guys did, it’s no wonder they didn’t stick around. (And yes, Pressing was that bad.)  The only aberration on that list is Mercier, but when breaking down his games, it’s not so surprising.  The first stay lasted 6 games and yielded one goal, one assist and a +2 rating.  A healthy forward corps sent him back, but he was one of the first to be called back.  Unfortunately, his second trip to Denver didn’t go so well: 3 games, no goals, no assists, a +0, and only one shot on goal.  Yeah, not tearing it up there, Justin.

So what did Stewart, Yip, Durno and Wilson do in those first 4 games that made Sacco keep them around?

Player GP G A +/-
Chris Stewart 4 1 4 +3
Brandon Yip 4 1 0 0
Chris Durno 4 2 0 +2
Ryan Stoa 4 1 0 0
Ryan Wilson 4 1 0 +2

Clearly, Stewie and Durns kicked ass.  They made a statement that couldn’t be ignored.  Wilson was hitting people into benches, so his offensive output, as limited as it was, was icing on Sandie’s cupcakes. But what about Yip?  Why did he get the benefit of the doubt when Stoa didn’t? I think this is one of those, “You know it when you see it” kind of things.  Yip has that certain something - and worked hard every shift - which got him some extra games.  Those extra games was all he needed.  In his next 5 games, he went 3 goals, 3 assists and a +4. Stoa had chance after chance, but never seemed to up his game from that first showing.

The 2010-2011 season thus far gives us this data:
Player GP G A +/-
David Van der Gulik 5* 1 1 +3
Kevin Shattenkirk 9 2 3 +2
Kevin Porter 14 5 1 +7
Mark Olver 4 0 2 +1
David Liffiton 4 1 0 +3
Colby Cohen 3 0 0 -1
Jonas Holøs 12 0 2 +3

* Went out on IR after 5th game

Olver was victim to a stacked forward roster. (Who woulda thunk during the summer I’d be writing that sentence now?) I’m still not sure exactly why Liffiton was sent down.  His numbers look great.  However, comparing Shattenkirk’s play to that of Cohen and Holøs, it’s pretty clear that production is the key for Sacco.  Points=playing time.

The moral of this story is that when Holøs gets back to Denver, he has 4 games to make his offensive stand.  Put up points?  He’ll get more games to show he’s not interested in going back to Ohio.