The Colorado Avalanche

Without knowing that the Colorado Avalanche even existed channel 5 announce they will be showing NHL live. My first thought was “Whatever team Patrick Roy is playing for is my team.”

NAME: Colorado Avalanche

FOUNDED: 1995

ARENA: Pepsi Centre

CAPACITY: 18,007

TEAM COLOURS: burgundy, white, silver, black

COACH: Jared Bednar

So in 1995 The Colorado Avalanche were born, but from 1972 until their move to Denver they were the Quebec Nordiqies. Quebec played in the WHA from 1972 until 1979 then they took the step to the NHL.

I have been an Avalanche fan since basically day one, and so far what a ride it’s been.

  • Nine times the division champions(eight of those in a row)
  • two time Stanley cup champions
  • two times the conference champions
  • two presidents trophies

I would suggest that is a pretty good return on taking a chance to move a hockey club out of Canada.

Along with all of those trophies came star studded teams Super Joe Sakic playing over 1000 games and amassing 1,641 points.

Peter “the great” Forsberg, Alex Tanguay, Milan Hejduk, Ray Bourque, Rob Blake and of course Patrick Roy. It was a pleasure to watch them all play and see the success the club had.

However in recent years they have fallen by the way side and none more evident than the 2016-17 season when the club suffered its worst record since moving to Denver.

Recording only 22 wins out of 82 games, definitely the lowest point as a fan I would say.

They then come the 2017-18 season and the Avalanche were back playing fast attacking hockey, better defence and good goaltending by both Semyon Varlamov and Jonathan Berner.

This saw the Avalanche finish in 8th place and make the playoffs for the first time since the 2013-14 season and although they played their hearts out they just didn’t have enough to beat the Nashville Predators.

This season saw Matt Duchene get his wish and leave the club for pastures new which I think led to some of the other guys being finally able to up their game.

Let’s talk about Nate Mackinnon

What sticks out for everyone is of course Nathan Mackinnon, Mac had been with the Avalanche since 2013. In his first season he played in 82 games and finished with 63 points. The following year he only made 64 games and points dropped to just 38.

nathan
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The following two seasons were much the same playing 72 games with 52 points. 2016-17, he played a full 82 games registering 53 points.

This past season Mackinnon went on a tear, 74 games and he finished the season with 97 points. To be honest he was outstanding and watching him I said as soon as I saw the wrist shoot my god that is just like super Joe.

Who else should you watch?

dynamic duo
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Nathan’s other line mates had their best seasons as well. Gabriel Landeskog had his second best year with the team finishing with 62 points and the mercurial Finn Mikko Rantanen also had his best season finishing with 84 points.

gabe
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

How about them goalies?

Varlamov

51 games

save percentage 0.920

GAA 2.68

Jonathan Bernier

37 games

save percentage 0.913

GAA 2.85

Even with the great goaltending it was just a little unfortunate we came up against a very good Nashville side in the first round.

varly-and-bernier1
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Just to make it back to the playoffs was such a great feeling for Avalanche fans and let’s hope for better next season.

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