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Denver columnist puts another licking on the Avs

Jan 31, 2013, 11:23 AM EDT

Greg Zanon Getty Images

Never one to pull punches, the Denver Post’s Adrian Dater wrote quite the passionate column following Colorado’s 3-0 loss last night in Vancouver.

As in the past, Dater’s biggest issue is with, in his words, “the tone-deaf upper management that tries to rule by fear and denial.”

Look, this is the deal with the Avalanche: coaches and all other personnel are instructed to keep it positive. Don’t criticize the brand, spin it as positive as you can, don’t get negative, have a “Nothing to see here, move on” persona whenever the S hits the fan on or off the ice. This is what anyone who works for the Avalanche in any capacity is instructed to do, or else consider yourself on the next plane out of town if you don’t.

Dater notes the less-than-disparaging post-game comments of head coach Joe Sacco after losing to the Canucks as evidence of the organization’s PR strategy.

Anyway, it’s worth a read.

To be fair to the Avs, they’re missing some key players. Gabriel Landeskog and Steve Downie are both injured, and Ryan O’Reilly is still in a contract dispute with the club.

But if they don’t turn it around soon, they’re going to miss the playoffs for the third time in a row, and the fifth time in the last seven seasons.

  1. thecheeman - Jan 31, 2013 at 11:55 AM

    I put that game on for the third period. That was some uninspiring hockey the Avs were playing. If Dater’s right about the Avs orders to pretend there are no problems, it’s an insult to Avs fans

    • dolphincult - Jan 31, 2013 at 2:38 PM

      I said it before and I will say it again. Fire sacco. He has no business being an nhl coach and will be out of the league when he is fired. It is his job to ensure players are prepared to compete. Excuses about who is injured does not account for the lack of effort or accountability for it. Every player who has questioned this guy has been run out of town and some with a lot of talent

  2. juliath83 - Jan 31, 2013 at 12:12 PM

    The Avs are a garbage, bottom-feeding franchise now. Long gone are the days of getting and keeping elite players. Notice how many Sakic, Roy and Forsberg jerseys you still see in the stands. How many of our guys could crack most lineups? I doubt it’s half. Who was the last verifiable star to play here? Who was the last guy to crack the top 10 in any stat category other than PIM? Landy and Duchene have talent, but Kroenke penny-pinches on coaching and these guys will never live up to their potential. NEVER. It’s sad. No fan base deserves the ownership group Colorado has, because the Avs have literally no hope of getting better until Kroenke sells, which he never will. Avs are the new Clippers, I regret to say. If the Avs finish 10th, it’s been a good season. Lottery picks every year, because what fans want to be sold is promising rookies rather than potential Stanley Cup runs. :eye roll:

    • lostpuppysyndrome - Jan 31, 2013 at 12:41 PM

      You’re right about the coaching/mgmt, wrong about the quality of the players. In terms of roster strength, they’re only a couple pieces away from being a legitimate contender, much like the Blues from 2-3 years ago. They have lots of young players who have many, many years of good hockey ahead of them. Don’t toss them under the bus yet.

      • polegojim - Jan 31, 2013 at 7:18 PM

        No one will know about the players… as long as the GM and front office continue to put weak HC’s in play.

        Tony Granato… twice???
        Joe Sacco

        Nothing against them as men or decent guys…. just not HC material.

      • lostpuppysyndrome - Feb 1, 2013 at 1:45 PM

        Totally agree. Sacco has done nothing for that team.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Jan 31, 2013 at 2:33 PM

      The Avs do have some talented, young forwards but they need some real NHL defenseman. You won’t find anyone in the stratosphere of Bourque, Blake, or even Foote on this roster (obviously). Erik Johnson is decent but the Avs gave up Shattenkirk for him, plus Chris Stewart. And Shattenkirk has been way more productive. I guess they got Duncan Siemens out of the trade too but they need to do a better job of drafting and developing defenders.

  3. anonymouslyanonymouscommentor - Jan 31, 2013 at 1:56 PM

    “This is what anyone who works for the Avalanche in any capacity is instructed to do, or else consider yourself on the next plane out of town if you don’t.”

    And that’s not incentive NOT to talk bad about the franchise?

  4. elvispocomo - Jan 31, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    The Canucks were a little worried about missing two of the 2nd line players in Kesler and Booth, but have enough depth to cover. Avs are already using their depth and then they have basically their top line out (Downie, Landeskog and O’Reilly) so it was going to be tough sledding for them either way.

    What are they supposed to do? Trade away draft picks for roster players? Worked well for them to get Varly…

    • dolphincult - Jan 31, 2013 at 2:40 PM

      no but how about some effort and accountability, you cant just wave the white flag. fire the coach for lack of preparedness to play

  5. misterchainbluelightning - Jan 31, 2013 at 3:16 PM

    Giving up Filip Forsberg or Mikhail Grigorenko and a second was a dumb move to make just to get Varlamov.

    • jernster21 - Jan 31, 2013 at 5:00 PM

      That’s ridiculous. Varlamov himself was a 1st round pick and is still an extremely young starting goalie – those don’t come around too often. Interestingly enough it seems that the Capitals have their own goaltending dilemma, flip flopping between Holtby and Neuvirth (Holtby has shown great promise and will be a stud imo). If you know anything about Avalanche history then you would know that we haven’t really had a good starting goalie since Roy except maybe Anderson but that didn’t turn out well in the end so to give up 2 picks that have no guarantee of turning into anything for a starting goalie is a good deal in my opinion. If anything, goaltending is the only part of this team that isn’t being talked about right now because they’ve been fine.

      • misterchainbluelightning - Jan 31, 2013 at 5:09 PM

        So what if he was a 1st round pick and young, he’s an average NHL goalie and not an All Star. I couldn’t care less about past history of the Avs in net. They should have kept their picks. There is at least 2 goalies drafted every year than have as much potential as Varlamov.

        Go see if anyone in Tampa Bay or Boston would be interested in Varlamov for their 1st round pick goalies. Doubt you will find any takers.

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