NHL: Can The Colorado Avalanche Win The West?
There are many unexpected events that have taken place over the course of the playoffs thus far. For one, both top seeds, in each conference, were eliminated in the first round. Secondly, the Wild Card teams have blazed a trail of success no one ever thought was possible. One of the burning questions in the Western Conference: Do the Colorado Avalanche have what it takes to win the West?
The Avalanche, after scratching and clawing for a playoff spot to end the regular season, did what many thought couldn’t be done. As luck would have it, the Colorado Avalanche would go on a decent tear to finish the regular season. Riding a streak where they would gain points from each of their final 10 games, the Avalanche would look to carry momentum into the playoffs.
They did just that. Dispatching the top-seeded Calgary Flames in five games, the Avalanche doused their opponents with relative ease and become just one team to shock the hockey world. After a 4-0 defeat in the first game of the opening round, the Avalanche clinched their collective fists and won the next four games. Now the Avs are in the second round, and they look to be somewhat outmatched even though the series is fairly even. Have they lost their energy or attitude?
Never Say Die Attitude Must Be Found In Matchup With Sharks
As every fan, “expert”, and player can expect, each round of the playoffs can and will only get harder. For the Avalanche, this seems to definitely be the case. While two of the final four games against the Flames were overtime, the other two games showed that the Avalanche could dig deep and lay on a “schoolyard” like beating.
What that indicates is, the ability to adapt and overcome a tough opponent fairly quickly. To say the beating Colorado laid on Calgary was shocking is an understatement. However, the biggest names on the teams were the brightest spots on the team against the conference’s top team. Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen, Tyson Barrie, and Philipp Grubauer paved the way for a David vs. Goliath-esque comeback and series victory against Calgary. Colorado must figure out the riddle that is the San Jose Sharks if they want to win the series, let alone win the Western Conference and go to the Stanley Cup Finals
A Few Bite-Sized Tidbits On The Sharks
The San Jose Sharks gave everything they had in order to send the Golden Knights Of Vegas golfing early. Taking the full seven-game slate of the “Best-Of-Seven” series against Vegas, the Sharks only dominated two games. Furthermore, the Golden Knights took the Sharks to overtime on the final two games of the series.
The usual suspects for the Sharks have maintained a consistent presence on the score sheet every game thus far. Therefore, with goals continuing to flow from Logan Couture, Tomas Hertl, Brent Burns, Erik Karlsson and more, it could be a safe bet to say that the Avalanche won’t advance or win the Western Conference. Unless they figure out San Jose. In fact, the goalies of the Sharks are battle tested. Also, the forwards and defensemen on the Sharks are ready, willing, and able to get their hands “dirty” at any time. Thus, the Sharks eliminated the Golden Knights in seven games. They can certainly take the Avalanche to seven games.
There is only one short phrase that comes to mind with this series, the playoffs, and either team: expect the unexpected. The Avalanche are a group of guys who are fully capable of pulling off the unthinkable. As has already been stated, they already have pulled off the unthinkable. The pivotal game four will be the ultimate proving ground – will show who wants it more. What should fans expect? Nonstop action. If the Avalanche escapes the Sharks, anything is possible. Colorado could win the West.
How do you feel about the chances of the Colorado Avalanche to win the Western Conference? Leave a comment below.
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