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Avalanche have reasons to be optimistic despite the struggle

New year, new Avalanche, as they hope to be healthier and happier soon.

New York Islanders v Colorado Avalanche Photo by Ashley Potts/NHLI via Getty Images

On this week's Mile High Hockey Lab episode, Adrian Hernandez was joined by Evan Liu, Ezra Parter, and Jacob Weindling to cover a few topics, mostly surrounding whether the Colorado Avalanche should be concerned with their recent inconsistency.

December was an up-and-down month, undoubtedly, but the consensus among the panel is that fans should not be worried. Ezra mentioned that, in all honesty, we should be talking about Jared Bednar winning the Jack Adams Award this season based on his ability to keep this team competitive while missing a chunk of usuals for the first 35 games this season.

J.T. Compher has been a standout for the Avalanche during this injury typhoon and is posting some surprising metrics. Adrian did a blind comparison of Compher and Nazem Kadri's JFresh player card to point out that although Kadri is more productive offensively, Compher competes for overall thanks to his elite defensive abilities. Jacob pointed out that Compher's success might be a depiction of Colorado's current inconsistency.

The conversation ended with acknowledging some of Jared Bednar's post-game comments after Colorado's shootout loss to the Los Angeles Kings. He seemed to take some blame off Sam Girard and Erik Johnson for a few of the breakdowns that led to odd-man rushes and goals for the Yotes. He mentioned that the forwards were allowing skaters to take the middle of the ice leaving the defense little to no correct answers. The MHHL crew thinks that although there may be some truth, Bednar's comments mainly serve as a deflection for a short-staffed blue line.

The Avalanche should begin to get healthier as the new year wears on, which should prove vital to their success throughout the rest of the year. Nathan MacKinnon has already returned, but Gabe Landeskog, Darren Helm, Bowen Byram, and Josh Manson (among others) are still absent from the lineup.

Let us know what you think in the comments, and be sure to download LAB #9 on your preferred podcast platform! Subscribe, share and go Avs! All podcasts are broadcasted live on the Mile High Hockey Lab YouTube channel.