Denver Post sports writer Mike Chambers responds to queries in the Avs Mailbag each week.
Pose an Avalanche- or NHL-related query for the Avs Mailbag.
What team would introduce that the Avs’ most favorable matchup in the playoffs’ first round? Least positive?
— Jack, Hooper
If and once we resume play, Jack, I might think the Avs’ least positive could be St. Louis, however, ’s impossible if those groups finish 1-2 in the Central Division, in any sequence. Keep in mind, that the Central champ plays a wild card (likely No. 8 seed) and the Central runner-up opens from the third-place Central team. As for positive, that’s a question because the C3 and either of these WC teams are great. But besides St. Louis — a really powerful neutral-zone trap team that has found a way to slow Colorado down — I don’t believe that the Avs have a preference in starting against Dallas (likely C3), or possible WCs Calgary, Winnipeg, Nashville, Vancouver or even Minnesota.
Hey Mike, what can you have an upgrade on MacKinnon yet? Really have to have the best player in baseball to the ice for the Avs to earn a playoff run.
— Tim, Denver
It looks like every sport I track online the Avs lose the combat. Apparently this doesn’t even affect the results of the games or even the Avs wouldn’t be on top of the standings, however it makes me wonder why they aren’t even better at winning faceoffs and the way they could improve. Is it something they want more training at? Is it that they don’t care about winning faceoffs that much? Can you shed some light?
— Jeff, Boise, ID
Sure, Jeff. The Avs have improved in faceoffs in the past two years, when they had been near the floor. They’re at 49.6%, which is 19th in the 31-team league. But I hear that you — than they win they seem to shed more big faceoffs. Why? In case Nathan MacKinnon has a weakness, then it’s faceoffs; he’s at 43.1% this season. That’s why Gabe Landeskog (56.4%) generally takes draws that line, along with the power play. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare (53.0%) and J.T. Compher (47.7%) are Colorado’s other leading draw guys.
I have a rules question that I hope that you can reply. In our loss to Anaheim, it seemed that Anaheim’s third goal which came on the power play shouldn’t have happened, at least in how it did. Before we committed the penalty that led to us being given, Anaheim had been and drove inducing a penalty. My query is this: Can a replay review show that there was an offside and nullify the punishment, because it ought to ’ve never incurred and had been a direct result of being? My guess is no and will only be utilized on scoring plays, however I wonder whether it needs to? We dominated the game at that point and it changed the complexion of the game.
— Todd Gilbert, Littleton
Yes, a coach’s challenge for offside can be utilized to try and overturn a goal, or so the offside must come in the exact rush as the objective.
Hey Mike, isn’Is it concerning that the Avs are poor in semi 3-on-3? I understand it won’t matter in the playoffs, although it s mad to believe MacKinnon, Landeskog, Rantanen and Makar have a losing record s best three skaters.
— Sam Kempter, Cedar City, Utah
Well, sans MacKinnon and Rantanen, they’re coming from an OT win in their last game against the Rangers. Debate about this last season, should you recall. Avs were like 3-15 in OT/shootouts, something one-sided that is mad, but they went 3-0 in OT in the playoffs.
Are the Avs really ready for prime time, meaning that a Stanley Cup run? They are above average in your home, while being an outstanding team in the street. They seem to play to their degree of rivalry with examples being just two home losses to the Ducks this season, losing to the Kings in the outdoor sport, etc.. On the street, they barely squeaked with a poor Red Wings team. Against the lowly Ducksthey had a chance to pull within one point of the Blues having a game in hand, but yet could not get it done. This has happened many times throughout the year. I understand that the harms, but the Ducks were without his top four defensemen and the Avs still couldn’t win.
— Eric Kea, New York City
It s difficult to gauge the Avs’ “bad” losses as you stated. The Avs just had lousy puck luck against the Ducks after that very first flukey aim. The 2-1 win at Detroit was Michael Hutchinson in net and also Cale Makar out. Yes, the Avs aren t as dominant as they have previously. But they can win on the street also, develop playoffs (if/when), home-ice advantage heats up with the energy (assuming fans will be able to attend).
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Mike, please clarify: Upper Body?? Lower Body??? Is it that the NHL is like it s a state secret that is classified, the only game that treats injury information? Why can’t they just publish the specifics? It doesn’t change something whether we know that a player has a knee injury, concussion, etc.. They’re injured. You can clear this up?
— Dan Rish, Albuquerque, NM
Danit stems from harms to the hand/wrist or even shoulder. Authors don’t need to divulge those injuries because their competition cross-check or can slash those areas to limit the participant ’s usefulness. That behavior was worse in the clutch-and-grab times (earlier 2005-06). So they chose to disclose injuries in the area of the body, and it stuck. Too poor. Should I see that a player on crutches with his lower leg in a boot, then I’ll disclose that he has a leg injury (which comprises ankle and foot). The Avs don’t need me to write that, however I don’t perform for them — I perform for you.
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