Game 4. Avs-Senators. The Avs Get Revenge on Craig Anderson

Posted: October 14, 2011 in Avs vs. Ottawa Senators, Game Thoughts

WOW! What a game. Sure it was against the Senators, who will be fighting for the first overall pick come early April, but wow, did the Avs ever look good. I had to leave after the first period which I thought was a maybe the best period of hockey the Avs as a team had played so far. Then I get home, and BOOM, 7-1.

Before I get to the Avs, I have to say, did Craig Anderson ever get what he deserved today. I’m guessing the Avs were chomping at the bit to play this game. After he gave up on the team last year, leaving them out to dry, I know the Avs wanted to get some payback. I also remember after the trade Sens fans were thanking us for such a great trade for them the rest of the year. Well, lets look at it now….We did horrible with Elliott giving us the second pick in the draft. Landeskog. We have Varlamov in goal, who has been great so far, and Sens fans have….4 more years of Craig Anderson. Who made the better trade now?

But onto the game. Love the offense. It was against a horrible team and goalie again, but 7 goals is crazy. Duchene lit the lamp and was on the score sheet a couple of times, which has to be a confidence booster for him. EJ also had a couple of assists which probably reduces some stress that came with the high expectations this year. If those two guys can preform at the 75% level of what they did tonight, I think the Avs have a good chance of making the playoffs. Especially Duchene, he has to be the offensive threat that everyone thinks he can be.

By far, the best line for the Avs has been the Landeskog-Oreilly-Winnik line.
They dominated the game tonight. 6 points between them, including a short handed goal from Winnik. Before training camp, I thought that Landeskog should play on a line with Duchene. Get a Toews-Kane, or Crosby-Malkin thing going, but Factor and Landeskog seem to have some sick chemistry early in the year. And how underrated is Winnik? All he does well, is everything. We got him for a fourth rounder. How about Hejduk too? Huge goal to tie things up in the first. When the Sens scored on the powerplay, against Giguere, early in the game, I had a bad feeling, but the Avs march back and Hejduk scores a sick goal at the end of an Avs powerplay.

Lindstrom had a very good game too. I did not see one goal coming from him, none the less two. Talk about taking advantage of an opportunity. But that brings me to Peter Mueller…um…I get that he is struggling but you cannot take him out of the lineup completely. Man, I hate Joe Sacco. The thing is, how can they get him back in the lineup now? Surely they can’t take Lindstrom out. The only other person I could see coming out is Kobasew, and I think that switch should be made.

Another interesting roster situation could be developing with Paul Stastny. The Oreilly line has started the last 3 games, and Duchene is clearly the number two. So logically, that leaves Stastny at the three. We cannot pay a third line center $6.6 million. If the Oreilly line keeps up their production, I don’t think the Avs have much of a choice, they will have to trade Stastny.

This game makes me want the game on Saturday to come that much quicker, it really is the first time in a long time it feels like, at least since last December, that I have had such enthusiasm about an Avs game. The Avs will go to Montreal, to face the Canadiens on Saturday, starting at 5 p.m. Mountain time.

  1. Good article and good assessment of the game, but the Stastny line is still the #2 line. Just because the O’Reilly line has started doesn’t mean they are #1, they just start the game off on the right foot and bring energy to start the game. They play the role of a 3rd line to perfection, getting the puck deep, grinding it out, and being responsible in all 3 zones. Stastny’s line needs more production, but they get played situationally like a top-2 line.

    • ppajak says:

      Sure, for now. If the O’reilly line can keep up the production they will be at least the #2. I’ll give Stastny the benefit of the doubt for a couple weeks, but I love what I’ve seen from O’reilly and company.

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