Written by Sean Payton | 25 April 2011

The Hart Memorial Trophy, is the "oldest and most prestigious individual award in hockey" and is awarded annually to the "played adjudged to be most valuable to his team" in the National Hockey League.

And the winner* is...
*pretending that the Colorado Avalanche is the only team in the NHL and I am the sole voter in the PHWA

Matt Duchene

Duchene led the Avs in points was tied with David Jones for the team lead in goals.  A big reason the Avs season turned out the way it did is because he lacked consistency - he had a slow start in games 1-20 (Chris Stewart carried the team) and horrific games 42-61 - once his linemate Fleischmann got hurt, the teams offense could no longer cover for the teams bad defense and the bottom fell out.  

Last year's winner: Craig Anderson

(Actual) Hart winners:
- Joe Sakic (2001)
- Peter Forsberg (2003)  no comments

Written by Sean Payton | 22 April 2011

The James Norris Memorial Trophy is awarded annually to the National Hockey League's top defensive player who demonstrates throughout the season the greatest all-round ability in the position".

And the winner* is...
*pretending that the Colorado Avalanche is the only team in the NHL and I am the sole voter in the PHWA.

John Michael Liles

The Avs defense corps was pretty awful this season, so the award goes to Liles on the merits of his offensive game, where not only was he the team's highest scoring defensemen, he was 4th in overall scoring with 46 points.  A sizeable chuck of those point came with a fantastic start of the season for Liles, where he set an NHL record - longest assist streak to begin a season (9 games).

PS - Erik Johnson - if you'd better win this award next season.

Last year's winner: Kyle Quincey

(Actual) Franchise Winners: none.  no comments

Written by Sean Payton | 21 April 2011

The Calder Memorial Trophy is an annual award given "to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition in the National Hockey League."

And the winner* is...
*pretending that the Colorado Avalanche is the only team in the NHL and I am the sole voter in the PHWA.

Philippe Dupuis

Ok, once Shattenkirk was dealt, the Calder field was pretty thin.  Holos and Olver were the only other two potential winners.  That being said, I thought Dupuis had a solid year.  He was an everyday player - playing in 74 games, he carved out a nice role for himself centering the 4th line.  6 goals, 17 points.

Last year's winner: Matt Duchene

 (Actual) Franchise Calder Winners:
  • Peter Stasnty (1981)
  • Peter Forsberg (1995)
  • Chris Drury (1999)
no comments

Written by Sean Payton | 20 April 2011

The Frank J. Selke Trophy is awarded annually to the National Hockey League forward who demonstrates the most skill in the defensive component of the game.  The winner is selected by a poll of Professional Hockey Writers' Association following the regular season.

And the winner* is... 
*pretending that the Colorado Avalanche is the only team in the NHL and I am the sole voter in the PHWA.

Daniel Winnik -
I will admit it is a little laughable to give a Selke award to a team that was this bad defensively (Avs finished 30th on the PK), but the major issues were with the Dmen and the goaltending.  I had O'Reilly and Winnik neck and neck.  I gave Winnik the edge because he finished -2 vs Factor's -7.  I also thought Winnik was more consistent, O'Reilly had an awful stretch Jan - Feb.  

Last year's winner: Ryan O'Reilly

(Actual) Franchise winners: none.  no comments

Written by Sean Payton | 19 April 2011

The Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy is awarded annually to the leading goal scorer in the National Hockey League.

And the winner* is...  
*pretending that the NHL only consists of the Colorado Avalanche

David Jones / Matt Duchene (27 goals)
Last year's winner: Chris Stewart (28)

(Actual) Franchise winners:
  • Milan Hejduk (2003) 
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Written by Sean Payton | 18 April 2011

The Art Ross Trophy is awarded to the National Hockey League player who leads the league in scoring points at the end of the regular season.

and the winner* is... 

*pretending that NHL only consists of the Colorado Avalanche

Matt Duchene with 67 points (27 goals, 40 assists)

Last year's winner: Paul Stastny with 79 points (20 goals, 59 assists)

(Actual) Franchise winners:
  • Peter Forsberg (2003) 
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Written by Sean Payton | 15 April 2011

After injuries and awful defense finally caught up with the 2010-2011 Colorado Avalanche during the previous 20 games, the Avs limped quietly to the finish line, finishing as the 2nd worst team in the NHL.  Despite all the losing, the team's young core (Duchene and O'Reilly) began to re-establish itself.  The year culminated with the retirement of the last fixture of the Avalanche '90s dynasty and team captain Adam Foote.


ABD's 3 Stars:

1. Matt Duchene - This is Matty's 3rd ABD 1st Star award and 2nd one this season.  To be honest, if anyone else was anywhere close, I would have probably spread the wealth so to speak.  Duchene was nearly a point a game player with 19 points in 21 games.  This, despite playing a bunch of nights with an AHLer (Olver) and a career 3rd liner (Winnik), AND despite Stastny missing 6 games, which made it easier for teams to key in on shutting down Duchene. 

2. Ryan O'Reilly - We all know O'Reilly can play a defensive game but the guy they call Factor proved he could be an offensive factor in the NHL.  His 8 goals over these games was better than Duchene, Jones, Hejduk or anyone else who wore an Avs sweater and he played with a offensive swagger that we haven't ever seen before.

3. David Jones - Jonsey probably deserves this award for simply finishing the season healthy, but his 7 goals and 12 points were both good enough 2nd best on the team.  Let's make this a habit, #54.

ABD's Goats:

1. Ryan Stoa - With all of the injuries and the trade of Chris Stewart, Ryan Stoa got his chance to show the Avalanche and the rest of the league that he belongs in the NHL.  Instead, Stoa coasted through his 16 games and put up a whopping 2 assists.  To put that in perspective, 4th liner Philippe Dupuis put up 4 points in less games.  

2. Jonas Holos - During the first half of the year, when we watch the Cumiskey and / or Hunwick meltdown with horrible turnovers every night, the Avsblogosphere was up in arms over why Jonas Holos wasn't playing.  I remember meeting Dater at the Roger Waters Wall show and he asked me if I agreed with the Avs playing Wilson over Holos.  (I said yes because Wilson plays a physical game.)  Well, maybe we found out why Holos wasn't playing.  In his big audition, 20 games, 3 assists, -8 and a whole lot of unconfident play.

Most surprising thing:
Ryan O'Reilly's goal scoring.  Entering the final 20 games, Factor only had 5 goals.  He put the puck in the net 8 times ovet this stretch.  Guess how many goals he had all of last year?  You got it, 8.  

Most expected thing:
Continuation of the losing.  Given the last couple of drafts, Avs were probably more incentivized to lose than win.  'Nuff said.

Team Stats:
Record: 4-16-1
Standings: 4th in NW division, 14th in Western Conference
Points: 9 (of 42) (-3)
Average points per game: 0.43* (-0.23)
Final points total: 68 (-15)

*As a baseline – last year San Jose (1st in Western Conference) averaged 1.39 points a game and Colorado (8th in Western Conference) averaged 1.16 points a game – anything above 1.20 is going to get you into the playoffs.

Home record: 2-6-0
Points: 4 (of 16)
Average points per game: 0.50 (-0.17)

Road record: 2-10-1
Points: 5 (of 26)
Average points per game: 0.38 (-0.12)

Goal differential: -29 (Avs: 49 - Opponents: 78) (+9)
*includes goals awarded for winning a shootout

Special Teams:
Power Play: 18.5%, 11th in the NHL (-1 spot)
Penalty Kill: 76.1%, 28th in the NHL (-2 spots)

OT Record: 1-0
Shootout Record: 3-1

Individual Stats:

Points Leaders:
1. Matt Duchene - 19
2. David Jones - 12
3. Ryan O'Reilly - 10

Goal Leaders:
1. Ryan O'Reilly - 8
2. David Jones - 7
3. Matt Duchene - 6

Assists Leaders:
1. Matt Duchene - 13
3. John Michael Liles - 7
3. Erik Johnson - 7

Plus / Minus:
Plus leader:  Koci, Stastny,  Olver, Stoa (-1)
Minus leader: Matt Hunwick (-10)

Budaj - 12 games, 2-9-0, .901, 3.21
Elliott - 11 games, 2-7-1, .905, 3.71

Final Thought:
So what did we learn this season?
  • Duchene is now the team's best player.
  • Ryan Stoa is officially a bust.
  • Sorry Hunwick: 5'11 190 is too small to play defense in the NHL.
  • Sorry Cumiskey: 5'10 185 is really too small to play defense in the NHL.
  • David Koci is a much better defenseman than an "enforcer".  (Not that he is much of a defenseman.)
  • It is in fact possible for David Jones to play hockey in April.
  • We will be hanging up #52 and #21 next fall.
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Written by Sean Payton | 11 April 2011

  • The obvious stuff first: It was great game to send Foote out on.  Footer was a winner, glad to see him go out a winner.
  • If you're not going to go out winning a Stanley Cup, then this isn't too bad.  Too bad Avs fans never got a chance to do this for Roy, Sakic or Forsberg.
  • Say what you want about Avs fans lately, but they still love the original stars.  They packed the Can well and cheered for Foote any chance they got.    I was glad to be one of them.
  • The star players got it done for Adam.  Multi-point games from Duchene, Jones and Hejduk.
  • McClement's last 5 games with the Avs was far and away his best stretch.  Maybe there is some hope for him.
  • Koci watch: Koci with a monster 15:49 in ice time.  Koci showed down the stretch that he can play defense - it's yet another example of player mismanagement from Sacco.
  • Look for the Games 61-82 Season Review over the next few days.
Next event: Draft Lottery, Tuesday.

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Written by Sean Payton | 08 April 2011

  • Wow, game 80.  Only 2 more of these left, folks.  As rough as this season has been, I still don't want to see Avalanche hockey go away.  It's gonna be a long offseason.
  • Way to many defensive zone turnovers.  Avs were very sloppy all night.
  • Nice to see Yipper get a goal.  It was his first point since Feb 12 and his first goal since Jan 24.  Its amazing that he was never sent down to Lake Erie as some point this year.
  • I continue to be impressed by Olver.  Given his size (5'10, 170) and his fearless style, I have serious doubts about him being able to make it through a full NHL season but hats off to #40.
  • Macias and Belle aren't even borderline NHL defenseman.  They are clearly AHL d-men.  Not surprising that the pair was on the ice for 2 of Dallas' goals.
  • Congrats to Matt Hunwick's brother, Michigan goalie Shawn Hunwick, who shut out the Fighting Sioux 2-0 in the National Semifinals last night.  It's funny that Matt Hunwick's injury happened right before his brother was to play in the Frozen Four.  (Conspiracy?!?!)  
  • Koci watch: a gaudy 7:09.
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Written by Sean Payton | 06 April 2011

  • After a really entertaining 1st that saw both teams score, the game really bogged down in the 2nd and 3rd and looked more like two non-playoff teams playing for nothing.  
  • The difference in the game was Holos and O'Byrne taking penalties within 15 sec of each other, putting the Blues on a long 5 on 3 that they eventually got a good bounce on and scored.
  • Why on earth were Blues fans booing Erik Johnson?  He certainly didn't ask to be traded.  In fact, he tweeted the day of the trade "Thank u Blues fans for all the support over the last four yrs. I enjoyed StL more than u will know."
  • Shattenkrik has a nice night - the GWG, an assist and he led the Blues in ice time with 22 min.
  • Another nice effort from Olver who clearly has some skill and isn't afraid to mix it up - sort of a Galiardi-like (circa 2010 San Jose series).  He'd be a good guy to call up to play on a top 6 line when guys go down next year.
  • Yip, Stoa, Holos, Hunwick and Wilson all look like guys who are borderline NHLers at best and aren't making a great case to stay in the league right now.
  • That Sobotka guy is kind of a dick.
Next game: at Stars, Thursday, 6:30PM mountain no comments