Maybe Pierre Isn't Crazy, After All

No, gosh darn it, you didn’t get rid of me for good. It’s just that my submission in the wake of the “hit I am sick of seeing” was too vituperous for publication.Now, in the spirit of the late, unlamented “be an analyst”, let’s examine the Avalanche deadline deals, three games hence.

Salo has had one game, and was exactly as good as he needed to be – which is to say, about 100x more poised than Sauve, who just seemed to self-destruct after the All-Star break. Maybe he started to believe his own press clippings (the death of many a career). Tommy looks a bit slow moving post-to-post on wrap-arounds, but otherwise should fill his role adequately.

Everyone was left shaking their heads in puzzlement in the wake of Morris for Gratton / Vaananen. But let’s be real – Derek had 2 goals in his last 43 games, and for an allegedly “offensive” defensemen, that’s not exactly firing on all cylinders.

While Gratton has never lived up to the “next Messier” tag everyone was so eager to hang upon him when he was drafted, he is a perfectly serviceable 3rd or 4th line center. And Vaananen has a massive upside, being only 23 and already evincing a rugged, “stay-at-home” type of style that the Avs so desperately need.

Yeah, I know – Drury for Gratton / Vaananen. Rub it in…..

Just as Konowalchuk was the steal of the century thus far, being a “less-heralded” type of trade, so the acquisition of Matthew Barnaby seems to have been the best new example of “Big Pete’s” penchant for finding diamonds in the rough (in this case, the Rangers – same thing, actually). Hey – 3 goals, an assist, and 2 fights in 3 games – there’s the spark everyone was looking for.

We won’t talk about “that other thing”, as it has been talked to death. But certainly it has had an impact in turning around a team that had won just 2 out of the past 10 before going on the current 4-game winning streak. Sakic has shown why he is the most underrated captain in the game, leading by example, and vaulting himself into a position to win the scoring title.

Now, with Tanguay (knee) and Hinote (shoulder) out until probably the beginning of the playoffs, and Forsberg’s return still questionable, the new acquisitions will find themselves thrust quickly into the spotlight. Also, we’ll see how Selanne responds to being a “healthy scratch” the last 2 games.

I shudder to think about the implications of the future with all the draft picks we expended, but, given the current climate, I have to agree with the sentiment that “the future is now”. Whoever wins this Cup may well get to keep it for a couple of years.


93 Responses to Maybe Pierre Isn't Crazy, After All

  1. Hahliday says:

    Ok, here we go:

    Barnaby – Sure he’s got a predilection for penalties. However, he fights, which will rack minutes up quickly, and thus far he’s provided a needed spark.

    Gratton – Everyone hates this guy because he didn’t live up to his over-hype. He’s a career minus because he played on some terrible Tampa Bay, Buffalo, and Phoenix teams. He’s still big, strong on face offs and a very adequate 3rd/4th line center.

    Hahl – He’s been out most of the year due to shoulder surgery. Part two applies to Dan Hinote as well. These guys have played with such wonderful natural talent on their lines like Worrell, *****mins, Moore, Brigley and McCormick. Since Gratton and Barnaby have been acquired, these five will not play nearly as much (if at all).

    Kariya – He’s had an off year unfortunately due to injury and a revolving door of linemates. No excuse, really.

    Vaananen – Phoneix is terrible. Their team goal differential is -43. When you come from that, I don’t think -3 is that bad.

    Sauer – Who was he paired with in Anaheim? I honestly don’t know, but if it were Ozolinsh or Havelid that might explain something. Even so, he’s still developing (only 24), and will see more ice time in the playoffs than Skoula would have.

    Boughner – He’s probably not going to see much ice time (age, speed, etc.). Despite his injury/penalty problems, he’s a good 5/6/7 guy, who can hit. You said it yourself, “He’s decent, but nothing more.”

    Salo – He’s a back-up plan. To your question I’d have to answer, no, he’s not a good pressure goalie. However, in all likelihood this is an irrelevant point. Furthermore, he’s still a huge improvement over Sauve.

    Worrell – Messier and Nedorost weren’t doing anything except taking up space anyway. Don’t forget we also got a 2nd rounder out of the deal (eventually traded to NYR).

    C.ummins – He’s Granato’s boy back from God knows when. I remember reading a preseason article about how his tryout with the Avs started off as a joke. He’s terrible, plain and simple, and I don’t think anyone has ever referred to him in any other sense (if someone has, get a CATScan)

    Konowalchuk – Wow, I’m surprised there’s no mention of the loads of potential we’re missing out on by trading Jonas Johannson.

    Forsberg – Even if he only plays with half heart and soul, I’d rather have him than anyone else in the league. Furthermore, I doubt this would be the case. Forsberg’s always cared more about Swedish hockey than the NHL, yet he’s still dominated the NHL. Why would anything change now?

    I think you like to paint a picture of the Avalanche that is much worse than reality. I’m truly sorry that every team doesn’t have players that can put up stats as good as the Red Wing’s players. Lies, damned lies, and statistics.

    Have a nice day,


  2. devfanman4 says:

    Why do you use such big words? For now on I’ll have to have a dictionary available for your articles.

    All kidding aside, I thought the Avs did an ok job trading this year. I was never a big fan of Derek Morris, he just seemed to be hyped up too much and we all know what happens to hyped up players (i.e. Alexander Daigle). So I didn’t consider that much of a loss although I was surprised. Ossi Vaananen was a good pickup and so was Barnaby as much as I don’t want to say it. I never liked him and he seems to take stupid penalties but he hasn’t been in the playoffs in 4 years so we don’t know what he’ll be like. I really still think their defense leaves something to desire but I could be wrong.

  3. cwthrash says:

    They do that very well actually. The ushers always make sure to stop people when the puck is dropped and wait until the next stoppage to let them go. And very few, if any, get up during play and move around. The exception of course being at the beginning of periods when there is usually a traffic jam of people filtering into their seats. Even that only lasts a minute and people are seated in short order.

    Don’t get me wrong about the kids. I have no problem with kids at sporting events, they love it and always have a good time. Most parents are quick to get them back in line when they get a bit too hyper, as kids will in that type of atmosphere. But this was ridiculous. These kids did nothing but jump on their seats and bang on the glass. And the parents were only a few rows up, they saw exactly what was happening but apparently didn’t give a shit that their kids were out of control and steadily getting worse. The dad came down once and said something, which lasted for all of two minutes. Even the people in the rows next to us starting saying something in the third, and they weren’t obstructed in any way by the kids. It just got that annoying. I watched the last 40 minutes of play through wavy glass.

    I just wish those boards bent back more towards the crowd. The kids were watching something else in the stands and leaning on the glass when Aubin and Adams I believe had a huge hit right where one kid was. He was bumped back a bit; I was hoping the hit would jar him something severe. Not to the point of injury of course, but enough for him and his (and I use this term loosely) parents to take notice and stop all their BS. It didn’t of course.

    The only part even mildly amusing was one of the kids shouting the “p” word during a scuffle. With the hat and blonde hair coming out from under it, I immediately thought of Tanner from “The Bad New Bears”. The behavior definitely fit.

  4. Just-Checking-In says:

    Maybe now you understand how it felt in Detroit when Claude Lemieux rammed Kris Draper face first into the boards.

  5. Just-Checking-In says:

    What you couldn’t fit Ram-a-lam-a-ham-dam into your response.

  6. defenestrate says:

    Working hard for that ESPN “dream job”, I see..

    Btw, nice muti-level “KISS” reference…

    “Give me back my drumsticks – NOW!”

  7. defenestrate says:

    “Maybe if you’d wipe your nose once in a while, Timmy, the other kids wouldn’t think you’re such a crud…”

  8. defenestrate says:

    Believe me, I was very, very, embarassed about that one. But hey, same coach – see a pattern?

    And, at least Lemieux didn’t advertise his intentions for several weeks beforehand.

  9. defenestrate says:


  10. defenestrate says:

    Sorry – was that too enigmatic? Or esoteric?

    Should I be trepanned?

  11. defenestrate says:

    Hot water burn baby… I speak two languages..Spanish and…and…another one.

  12. Freeze says:

    The Avs were a great team that had the makings of a dynasty. I credit Lacroix for what he did to help build the team, but then he turned around and got rid of guys like Miller, Deadmarsh, Drury, Ricci, Rucinsky, Young, Kamensky, Simon, Devries, and Klemm. When you have a winning combination, you don’t need to clean house. Lacroix did just that. I know Deadmarsh has been out of the lineup for a long time, so I guess the Avs got lucky on that one.

    I’m not saying the Avs are a bad team. I happen to think they will make it to the Final 4, especially with Bertuzzi out of the way. But Colorado could have been great for a long time if Pierre hadn’t lost his mind along the way.

  13. EmptyNetter says:

    You and matteo have got to stop posting here. I try to read this at work when the boss ain’t lookin’, but my chortles and guffaws will give me away for sure some day. Welcome back!

  14. avsfan19-33 says:


  15. JStatic87 says:

    So you gave up Drury for a faceoff man? Good one…

  16. JStatic87 says:

    Sorry man, but the Eagles still can’t stop the run. That was their glaring need, and they go out and get Kearse. TO will help, but they still need another reciever too. It all depends if they swing a deal in the draft to get a run-stopper, because if they don’t they’ll get knocked out in the NFC finals yet again…

  17. defenestrate says:

    We are best taken in small doses…

    I caught a small dose once in San Diego..

    but she was from Thailand..

    but that’s another story…

  18. defenestrate says:

    I keep telling you people – repeated exposure to CelinĂ© Dion does that….

  19. defenestrate says:

    Nobody’s perfect, except Leaf Expert…

  20. Just-Checking-In says:

    Oh I agree, Lemeiux did not advertise it and I truly believe that was a spur of the minute thing, especially with the playoffs and all.

    However, the March 26 did a lot to remove those demons.

    Kind of funny how all of that dislike can be moved so easily…..

  21. Flyer_Fan says:

    eat a dick geek boy

  22. JStatic87 says:

    Touche salesman. Touche.

  23. TC_4 says:

    Ok, well I have tons of insides to the league buddy, so I wouldn’t question what I say about Morris. My point about Gratton is that in the past when he hasn’t had to be “the man”, he’s played very well. But he may not, but I’m just saying I think he will.

  24. 24cups says:

    GO HABS GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  25. Freeze says:

    Indeed!! That’s one scary woman.

  26. defenestrate says:

    It probably helps that most of the participants (including management) are no longer in attendance.

  27. defenestrate says:

    I’m not sure it’s a woman. Due to certain equine features, around the D-Strate household it is referred to as “Mrs. Ed”.


  28. defenestrate says:

    Don’t worry, spanky – someday you too will grow one, and become a “real boy”. Trust your Uncle Geppetto.

  29. defenestrate says:

    Absolutely – we’re so testosterone-laden here, he just has to be “a man” instead of “the man”.

    Besides, I don’t like “The Man”. He’s always trying to “keep us down”.

  30. Flyer_Fan says:

    i can just picture your head bobbing back and forth as you are typing out your “ramblings”

    Flame on geek!

  31. knobygobbler says:

    Where the hell have you been?

    You come back and attack me d-strate???

    You haven’t turned into the brown gooey corn and nut laden excretion that comes out of my hole have you?

    You had some health concerns…….is everything cool now?

  32. 19Yzerman says:

    Maybe Anson Carter should give him some dreadlocks to help offset both of their head gear fittings.Anyway I consider Worrell to be the one of leagues toughest fighters and I am always amused to see a player stand up and challenge him.Av’s have some gritty players too. Foote, Blake, Gratton, Barnaby and Worrell.I don’t know about Pierre being crazy but, I will say that the list of gritty players that can score that he has assembled is scary.

  33. defenestrate says:

    Spring break from the middle school, eh? Run out of small animals to torture? Tired of peeping at your sister?

  34. Flyer_Fan says:

    bob bob bob bob bob bob

  35. defenestrate says:

    Wow – you found a word you can spell, since it’s the same forwards and backwards…

    Try “poop” now….

  36. Flyer_Fan says:

    aren’t your shoulders hurting from all of that “head flapping”??

  37. Freeze says:

    This just made me think of what Hell could be like. I better clean up my act!!

  38. commonwealth says:

    Nobody traded Drury for Gratton….

    You can draw lines from A to B to C but the bottom line is, hockey is a buisness, trades were made, he is now in Buffalo.


  39. matteo says:

    You don’t think that would have been over doing it??

  40. matteo says:

    I knew you would pick that up…I was hopeful of the huddled masses yearning to think free….however I am saddened by their collective non-responce. Perhaps they are all too busy wallowing in thier own bastardy.

  41. matteo says:

    Never can be too enigmatic and always just enough of a taste of the esoteric to keep them all reaching for Mr Webster.

    I saw a great special on that the other week. They had a competition between two groups to build and fire their respective weapons. The built stone walls in a field and let the teams unload on them. They are certainly impressive tools of early warfare.

    Maybe we could have Bettman’s team construct one and Goodenow’s team another. Then they could take turns firing vagrants at the Igloo in Pittsburgh. The first team to successfully launch 5 vagrants over the wall and onto the ice surface wins.

  42. matteo says:

    That’s what she said….she can only take you in small doses because that is all that is available…..

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