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What Went Wrong: Derailed

The Colorado Avalanche's second round defeat against the Dallas Stars was the result of a crippling distraction

By Clyde E. DawkinsPublished about a month ago 3 min read

The saddest part of this: it seemed almost inevitable.

The Colorado Avalanche were coming off humilating the very goalie who will (most likely) win the Vezina Trophy this year, and we were in the catbird seat waiting for the dust to settle in the Dallas Stars/Vegas Golden Knights series. The momentum continued in Game One; a big time overtime win after trailing 3-0. The Avs lost Game Two, but we nearly pulled off another comeback. Even so, it was 1-1 heading home, but Game Three didn't go well for us. Despite this, we were still at home, and we had a chance to rectify things.

And then...we suddenly started Game Four with only two first period shots.

We were beaten like we stole something, and a lot of Avs fans entered Game Five in a pessimistic mood. However, what I saw fro the Avalanche was the same team we had been all year. Fighting for goals, getting them at the right time, and winning one more chance to play at home. Game Six looked good. We scored first for the first time in the series. We ended up going to OT after the Stars tied it. The Avs' overtime period was not a good one, we were dominated, but we made it to double OT, which has been rare for us. A better period, but unfortunately, it was too little, too late. Not only did the Stars win it, it was Matt Duchene. Of course it was.

Now there are a lot of good answers to "What Went Wrong?" in this series. Losing all of our home games (despite being the best home team this season) definitely was a hindrance. Whistles being swallowed on Dallas penalties didn't help. Scoring three goals total in our home games was also a problem. Not starting on time definitely. And Games Three and Four were lethargic.

Despite all of that, here's the only true entity to blame for this loss:

You let us down again, Val. I'm going to be honest; a big part of me wanted Valeri Nichushkin off the team after the bullshit he pulled in Seattle. We all remember this; he was with some random woman (who wasn't his wife) in some hotel in Seattle during our series against the Kraken--the year we were trying to repeat. We wouldn't see him for the rest of that season, and we ended up upset by Seattle in seven games. Val received another chance, and had a hell of a season. He was scoring goals left and right during this run, but less than an hour before Game Four starts, we hear the news. Suspended for six months without pay, because the idiot went off the wagon.

So that's two years straight that Nichushkin's failed us when we needed him the most. We gave this guy a big time extension because he scored four goals in the 2022 Final: 8 years/$49 million. That contract kicked in last year, and that and this year only serve as $13.25 million wasted and thrown away. He's got to go. We need to buy his ass out. I'm done with him. Val's unreliability cost us at least one more Cup. A part of me now believes we should have paid Nazem Kadri and let Val go. It was tough either way; both players are hella good, but at least Kadri had his head on straight.

With the season coming to a way too early end, it's time for Nathan MacKinnon to collect his long overdue Hart Trophy. Regarding this run, MacKinnon added 14 more playoff points to his career total (4 G/10 A), and elsewhere, Mikko Rantanen had that same total--including scoring two of the three home goals in this series. Cale Makar led the way with 15 points (5 G/10 A), and Artturi Lehkonen had 11 points (6 G/5 A). As for Casey Mittelstadt, his very first playoff appearance saw him rack up nine points (3 G/6 A). As for Alexandar Georgiev, I think that even in defeat, he silenced the haters and naysayers with his Game Six performance.

So the Colorado Avalanche's quest for Cup #4 came to an abrupt end. It was fun to watch this season, especially with how MacKinnon was performing. I really hope we buy Val out; we really need to. He can't keep letting us down again. Other than that, well, I think this team's Cup window is still wide open, and the Avalanche will definitely capitalize on that opportunity.

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About the Creator

Clyde E. Dawkins

I am an avid fan of sports and wrestling, and I've been a fan of female villains since the age of eight. Also into film and TV, especially Simpsons and Family Guy.

Feel free to follow my social media:

Twitter - Facebook - Tiktok - Instagram

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  • Philip Gipsonabout a month ago

    You definitely don't waste time when it comes to stories such as this. I sincerely enjoyed it.

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