Colorado Hockey podcast – The 2016 Rookie showcase – Avs edition featuring AJ Haefele

What could be better than a Rookie Showcase held in a neighborhood rink to get the die hard Avs fans ready for the hockey season? Actually, the answer to that is The Rookie Showcase plus The World Cup of Hockey and I can’t help but think that the players in the showcase were just a little bit inspired by the hard-hitting playoff style game they were seeing in the World Cup of Hockey. In both cases, the players came out ready to play and with something to prove. It’s a good time to be a hockey fan.

rosters
Team Rosters

 

Joe Sakic being chased down by adoring kids who don't find that creepy.
Joe Sakic being chased down by adoring kids who don’t find that creepy.

Above, Joe Sakic proves he’s still all about the fans as he stops outside the men’s room to sign a few autographs. He was quick to get a few signatures off and then disappear down a hallway I never even knew existed at the Ice Centre.

Mason Geersten – a name that’s been on the radar for a while but this was my first in-person viewing of his game and I didn’t know he knew how to chuck the knuckles. This was a good showing for Geersten in every way.

Show Notes:

AJ is an Avalanche Editor and Beat Writer for BSNDenver.com. Follow @BSNAvalanche for coverage. I also write about video games.

Where to find AJ online:

Continue reading Colorado Hockey podcast – The 2016 Rookie showcase – Avs edition featuring AJ Haefele

Five for Friday – Hockey related links worth sharing – Inspiration Edition

Five for Friday –  the curated list of hockey links to help you put an end to the last day of the week. Nothing too serious… just some hockey links for the hockey fan in you.

What would sports be without inspired speeches to change minds from “I don’t’ think we can” to “I think we might be able to pull this off.”

  1. To say that hockey is beautiful may seem like an odd statement to the outsider. But for those who play the game or know it well enough to see beyond the fights and the chirping… in the heat of battle, beauty is found. To see the skills on display as the brutality of the game swirls around each and every player is a really to see a beautiful dance with very real consequences. Plus, it helps to see it in slow motion. Everything is better in slow motion.

  2. Then, there’s the other beauty… the action of the game is found on the ice. But, the heart and soul of the game extends far beyond the rink and into the stands where the die-hard fans live each and every moment through their teams and players actions.

  3. For eveyr player that made it to the NHL there is a support system that made it possible. A family, a coach, teammates… it’s never a one man journey and that support system feels both the highs and the lows on the ice, just like the players.

  4. Lastly, It’s not exactly inspirational but it does light a fire in your gut as a fan to see the behind the scenes side of hockey. Win or loose, it’s always an interesting ride.

Honorable mentions:

Continue reading Five for Friday – Hockey related links worth sharing – Inspiration Edition

4 More Years and Something to Prove – Tyson Barrie

A weakness overcome is more powerful than a strength that persists. In the case of Tyson Barrie, he’s now fully aware of his strengths, and weaknesses after going through an arbitration hearing with the Colorado Avalanche. Or, at least he now has a better idea what his employer thinks his weaknesses are.

“We try to tell them (the arbitrators) how great I am and they (The Colorado Avalanche) try to tell them how bad I am. It’s pretty simple.” — Tyson Barrie

Tyson Barrie went the route of former Avalanche teammate Ryan O’Reilly and drug his contract negotiations right up to the last minute of arbitration. Like O’Reilly before him, Barrie managed to come to terms with Avalanche just before the arbitration decision came back. But, unlike O’Reilly, I don’t think the arbitration process has jaded Barrie or signals the end of his love for the Colorado Avalanche. Especially with Roy being replaced as head coach by Jared Bednar and his “upbeat, attacking style.” Tyson Barrie is a better fit than Ryan O’Reilly was, both on the ice and in the locker room. My bold albeit obvious prediction is that Barrie will thrive under coach Bednar and the “upbeat, attacking style.”

True, every coach says they want to play an “up-tempo, fast-paced, aggressive style,” but when it comes to Bednar, I believe him. As head coach of the Cleveland Monsters, Bednar led his team to their first ever Calder Cup Championship with his “fast-paced, up-tempo style.”

Every man has a history and Bednar’s history supports his claim that he want’s to bring that style of play to the NHL, the Colorado Avalanche and to the fans.

So for a player like Tyson Barrie who thrives in a fast-paced attacking style it’s almost like being traded to a brand new team, with a new style and system, but without all of the messy emotions of being traded. It’s a fresh start with a new coach and a new system, but right here in Colorado where he already knows the team, has buddies and adored by the fans. Honestly, I’m not sure there could have been a better scenario after getting the contract done for Tyson Barrie.

As for the process itself, how it affected Barrie’s loyalty to the organization and his moral. I don’t think it’s an issue at all. Barrie has been around tense business dealings his entire life as the son of Lynn Barrie and despite that innocent looking baby-face of his, I think he’s mentally tough and ready to thrive. Barrie and his agents tested the waters, got a benchmark for Barrie’s worth and at the end of the day, did good business. If anything, he’s shrewd.

On a recent call-in interview with the NHL Network Barrie spoke candidly about the arbitration process — all be it carefully — and what he’s able to take from it.

Barrie said of the Arbitration process:

“(It’s) something both side would have liked to avoid, but at that end of the day it’s a business —  both sides understand that.”

Again, I really do think this is water-under-the-bridge for Barrie. He’s got a world of opportunity at his feet, and I think he knows it. Kudos to Barrie and his management for doing their due-diligence, but frankly, I don’t think T-Bear was ever really all the interested in leaving the organization.

Reflecting on the toll that arbitration can take on a player, Barrie said:

“I wouldn’t  say that I’m happy I got to do it, but it’s behind me now and… no hard feelings”

Clearly, Barrie can make the separation between personal and business. I also think he has the ability and grit to use this experience as a catalyst to become a better player by focusing on his “weaknesses” and taking the feedback as a challenge.

When Asked what he’d like to work on and improve on this next year:

Barrie started by noting that:

  • He had another good year, last year
  • He’s proven that he can be a top offensive D-man in the NHL
  • He’s shown that he can be consistent

While I’ll agree with this as a blanket statement,  I for one have to say that I was expecting a bit more from Tyson Barrie in the 2015-2016 season. Even though he matched his point totals from the previous year, I expected him to exceed the previous numbers and show a bit more progression in his defensive game. Another point that Barrie addressed in the interview with this comment.

“I know there are knocks on the defensive side of my game and, that’s something I’ll have to deal with and something I’ll have to improve at still”

I haven’t seen a lot of interviews with Barrie being this candid and forthcoming before. He really seems to have come through the arbitration process with a professional mindset and perhaps a bit more of the maturity he alluded to.

As for the team: When asked what he thought would be better about this coming season vs. the previous two seasons — where the Avs didn’t make the playoffs, Barrie said:

“Everybody talks about what a good young team we are… I think now is the time for us to take that next step. For the younger guys to mature, myself included. We’ve got a younger team but, guys who’ve been in the league a long time.”

“We hate the feeling we’ve had in the last few years, we fell like we’ve let each other down and let the fans down. We’re going to be happy to get back into the playoffs this year.“

Amen to that T-Bear, we’ll all be excited to see you back in the playoffs again.

Barrie must be chomping at the bit to get the 2016 season going. While the rest of the Avalanche core players are playing for the respective countries in the World Cup of Hockey, Barrie’s back in Colorado, in training camp. If Tyson Barrie is as good as he thinks he is (I think he is) I fully expect to see him in the World Cup of Hockey in the very near future. But, the best he can do for now is get some quality time with his new coach, work on this weaknesses, and be 100% ready for awesomeness this coming season.

Here’s hoping we got a bargain in the Barrie deal.

Show Sponsor: www.AvsFam.com
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To hear the full interview with Tyson Barrie head over to the NHL Network.

Five for Friday – Five hockey links worth sharing – McLeod Gone Wild

Behold the Five for Friday curated list of hockey links worth clicking on. As if you had something better to do at work on a Friday:)

We're always researching for a project/podcast and finding cool stuff worth sharing. Here's what we've found this week. Stay Awesome!

There is no love lost between the Colorado Avalanche and the Minnesota Wild. Not from the players, or fans perspective. But, nobody seems to hate the Wild more the Cody McLeod. Good on’ya Daddy Mac!

Note Peter McNabb in the background doing his best to stay alive.

I never want to see a player badly hurt, even a Wild player. This sucks for sure. But, McLeod did let up, a bit. He could have come a lot harder but didn’t. Douchey, yes. Worse that Matt Cooke would do? Hell no.

But wait, Cody isn’t just a hate filled fighter, he’ll fight because that what guys like him and Chris Stewart do. It’s their job.

Lastly, and just in case you’re starting to think the Wild are harmless victims in this shared hatred… no. Their punks.

Now, what could McLeod possibly have been pissed-off about? One could even argue that… again, he was just doing his job.

Continue reading Five for Friday – Five hockey links worth sharing – McLeod Gone Wild

Five for Friday – Hockey related links worth sharing – The Pavel Datsyuk Move

Five for Friday –  the curated list of hockey links to help you put an end to the last day of the week. Nothing too serious… just some hockey links for the hockey fan in you.

  1. Learn How To Do “The Datsyuk Move
    I’m an Avs fan through and through but talent is talent and there’s no denying the magic of Pavel Datsyuk or the mystic powers of this move. The goalies reactions are almost as good as the move itself. 

  2. The first time Datsyuk did it in a game
  3. Datsyuk embarrasses Vokoun

    Note: More of Vokoun was out of the crease than in the crease by the time Datsyuk was done with him. This must haunt the poor goalie when he tries to sleep at night. 

  4. If you thought he was just a shoot out/breakaway talent – behold 14+ minutes of proof that he was, indeed, an amazing hockey player in all aspects, who just played for the wrong team.
  5. But, of all the things this guy did… that Datsyuk cutback move was my favorite. He just had guys chasing their tails when he was on his game, and when he did it against the Avs… nothing was more frustrating.

    Lastly, for those who will puff-up their homer hockey chests and say “what your a Wings fan now”… first, suck it. I’m an Avs fan through and through but I’m a hockey fan for life and I appreciate skill no matter where it comes from. Believe it or not we haven’t always had a team in Denver and you had to get your fix wherever you could.

Stay awesome!

Honorable mentions:

Continue reading Five for Friday – Hockey related links worth sharing – The Pavel Datsyuk Move

Any Given October – Colorado Hockey Podcast (Bedner remix) ft Al Pacino

Lot’s of craziness to keep us Avs fans busy this off-season. Today, we emerge from our podcasting comma to share our thoughts on the departure of Patrick Roy and the road ahead.

… and to share our first ever insight on our new coach.

  • If he is successful, he remains coach Bedner
  • If he fails, he will become coach Bender (because he’ll start drinking just to stay alive)

Continue reading Any Given October – Colorado Hockey Podcast (Bedner remix) ft Al Pacino

Five for Friday – Five hockey links worth sharing – Pavel Barber edition

Behold the Five for Friday curated list of hockey links worth clicking on. As if you had something better to do at work on a Friday:)

We’re always researching for a project/podcast and finding cool stuff worth sharing. Here’s what we’ve found this week. Stay Awesome!

  1. Pavel Barber – How to embarrass goalies.
  2. I can think of a few goalies who may have gone to the same school.
  3. Just when you thought you had some skills… a little punk shows you up on Youtube.
  4. The amazing thing about this kid is not that he can score each and every time he’s past the blue line. It’s that he passes the puck. Unheard of at this age and with that skill. Kudos, young man… Kudos!
  5. Before you head out to the local pick-up game… he’s a quick tut on how to Zoro… You know you want to. good luck!

Honorable mentions:

  • Evidently there is a real league called “floor ball”, who knew.

 

Continue reading Five for Friday – Five hockey links worth sharing – Pavel Barber edition

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