The Colorado Avalanche got some rather surprising news a few months ago. Patrick Roy unexpectedly stepped down from his position as head coach of the Avalanche in August, just before the start of training camp. Roy said he didn’t necessarily fit into the Avalanche’s plan, stating that his coaching philosophy was not in line with his players. Perhaps he saw a bad season coming in 2016-17 and he didn’t want to be fired, so he made the decision to just resign. Roy has a sizable ego, nobody is denying that. In other words, the idea of him stepping down before somebody had to tell him he is fired may be a theory. The Avalanche are 3-2-0 for a respectable start to the season. Colorado made a quick decision hiring Jared Bednar, the former head coach of the Lake Erie Monsters of the AHL, who captured the Calder Cup last season.
It almost feels like the Avalanche looked at Bednar and saw he just won a championship in the AHL and brought him on board. There wasn’t much time for the Avs to do their homework, so it certainly worked out well for Bednar. Roy had his successes in Colorado. It looked like it was going to be a long and fruitful relationship between the Avalanche and Roy. He got the Avs going in the right direction immediately after years of porous results, so this all has come out of left field. Bednar has a golden opportunity, though, and we’ll see if he follows through.
Nothing negative or positive has really stuck out with the Avs thus far. As far as the Coyotes are concerned, they’re coming off their biggest win of the season against the Flyers in Philadelphia, a 5-4 win to bring them to 2-5-0 on the year. The Yotes are going to give up goals, the only chance of them finding success is to do what they did in Philadelphia. Score goals and score some more, because there will be lapses on the other end of the ice. Let’s head to Colorado and find a winning NHL pick.
Louis Domingue has been finding problems backing up for Mike Smith early this season. The Coyotes turned to Domingue following a lower-back injury to Smith, which is posing problems for him and is listed as week-to-week on the injury report. Domingue has been having problems finding the puck, as he enters tonight with a save percentage of 0.857. Even with a healthy Smith, I imagine it would be difficult for the Coyotes to keep the puck out of their net. The defense is allowing 34.1 shots per game and are last in the league, surrendering 4.29 goals per game.
The Avalanche have been trying to tighten up on defense themselves. They’re giving up 32.8 shots per game, so between the Avalanche and Coyotes, they have allowed 66.9 shots a game. The Yotes are scoring over 3 goals per game with 3.14 a game, so the offense has been clicking, it’s just the defense hasn’t been able to hold up. There shouldn’t be any shortage of goals tonight in the desert, with a play on the total looking in order.
PICK: OVER 5.5 GOALS (-110)