Friday, November 18, 2011
Gettin' Jiggy wit It
Gonna keep this one short. Thought the Avs played their best, most complete game of the season tonight. The offense produced enough to win, the defense was solid all game long, and Giguere was calm, cool, and collected as he earned his 1st shutout in an Avs sweater and 35th of his great career. Jiggy didn't have to make the spectacular, highlight reel saves, which means that he played a very solid positional game. He made the timely saves and the defense was good clearing loose pucks and traffic in front of him. Glad TJ Galiardi picked up an assist. I like the work he's done all season and I think that if he keeps it up, results will start to accumulate for him on the score sheet. The cliche of "your best players have to be your best players" rang true as Paul Stastny, who was invisible last night, gave the Avs their insurance goal and Duchene skated well all night and clinched the game with an ENG at the end.
I like the new line of Duchene with Landeskog and Hejduk on the wings. Tonight was the first game of the season in which the OWL line was separated and the new combos paid off. Like I've said from preseason, Landy and Dutchy could be absolute magic together if they click!
For some reason, the team seems to play better in front of Jiggy. Before the phrase "goaltending controversy" gets recklessly thrown around, I'm going to say this, there is none. Varlamov is still the #1 netminder here in Colorado despite Giguere's two consecutive starts in which he's had a GAA of 0.50 and a shutout. I am all for riding Giguere, the hot goalie during this stretch, but at the end of the day, Semyon Varlamov is the goalie that the Avs are banking on now and into the future and it is his team. A very classy Giguere even said as much, “The future of this team belongs to Varly, there’s no doubt about that.”
The Avs had a big win against the Islanders last week, only to follow it up with three disappointing losses. They desperately need to build on the momentum as another very good Pacific Division team comes to town Sunday in the Sharks.