Flames-Avalanche: Who Will Prevail Tonight, and at the End of the Season?

April 2nd, 2010 by Doug Gausepohl Leave a reply »
Friday night's game featuring the Colorado Avalanche hosting the Calgary Flames is a classic matchup of the ultimate underachievers against the ultimate overachievers—with an insanely large amount of importance surrounding it.

The Colorado Avalanche had been one of the most pleasant surprises of the 2010 NHL campaign. By Feb. 6, they had already eclipsed their entire point total from last season. 

They were getting steady goaltending from goalkeeper Craig Anderson, who had been starting full-time for the first time in his NHL career. 

They were getting accelerated production from teenagers such as Matt Duchene and Ryan O'Reilly, while benefiting from the veteran leadership of Milan Hejduk and Adam Foote. 

Notice that most of that is in past tense.

Then, the Olympic break came.  In retrospect, it could have been the turning point in the Colorado Avalanche's season.

They've been 6-8-1 since the 15 games following the break (1-5-1 in their past seven), and have fallen from possible Northwest Division contention all the way into eighth place in the Western Conference. 

Th ...

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