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Mailbag: Avalanche's biggest challenge.most improved team

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Who is the biggest threat to Central’s Avs? — @punmasterrifkin

I still think it’s the St. Louis blues with stick taps added to the Nashville Predators and Dallas Stars. But for now, it’s Bruce at the top of the team’s list who poses the biggest challenge to his Colorado avalanche, first in the Central Division and ultimately in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

The Blues have built a championship pedigree since winning the Stanley Cup in 2019. Ryan O’reilly, Vladimir Tarasenko, Braden Shen, Robert Thomas When Ivan Barbashev,Counsel Colton Paraico When Robert Bortuzogoalie jordan binnington, remains from the cup-winning team.Forward Noel Acchari defense man Torii Krug Played forward in the Boston Bruins’ Stanley Cup final against the Blues Brandon Third defense man Nick Lady Each won a cup with the Chicago Blackhawks.The Blues have a lot of experience and core, they also have forwards Pavel Bukhnevich (76 points last season) and Jordan Cairo (75), Defenseman Justin Falkgifted, skilled, and deep.

The Blues have lost to the Avalanche in the playoffs the past two seasons, swept the 2021 Stanley Cup first round, and lost six in the Western Conference second round last season. They know what they are up against. It’s not surprising. They also have better goaltending, at least on paper. I preempt Binnington and what we know about him. Alexander Georgiev St. Louis, like any team in the NHL, can play a hybrid style of toughness and skill. The Blues win with puck control and power plays are usually effective. If they can keep penalty kills in the top 10 (2020-21 season he was ranked 25th with 77.8% and last season he was 5th with 84.1%), then all season he’s 1 You will be challenged for rank.

VIDEO: NHL Tonight Calls for Avalanche Repeat

What’s your feeling about which teams have grown the most this offseason? Could the new netminers in Toronto, Colorado and Edmonton tip the scales in either direction? — @jreinitzesq

Ottawa Senators had the best offseason of any team by acquiring forwards Alex Devlincat (trade) and Claude Giroud (free agency), goalkeeper Cam Talbot (Trade), with sign-forward Tim Stutzl Josh Norris 8 year contract.Ottawa’s defense then still gives me a pause Thomas ChabotIf you’re going to criticize the Senators area it’s on the back end and that’s the main reason I don’t think they’ll be a playoff team. If so, they will challenge for a playoff spot after missing out on 27 points last season. It is the first time all eight teams have qualified with his 100 points or more. Senators might be good enough to score at least 90 this season.

The Seattle Kraken could be the West’s most developed team after finishing last in the Pacific Division with 60 points in its first season.They improved depth scoring in forwards Andre Brachowski When Oliver Bjorkstrand Possibility of adding a full-time center Matty BeniersNo. 2 pick in the 2021 NHL Draft, Shane Wright, the 4th overall pick in the 2022 NHL Draft. Seattle should be better offensively than last season with the Chicago Blackhawks where he tied for 28th with 2.60 goals per game and last season in power play he was 29th (14.6%). . Goalkeeper Philippe Gulbauer must be better than last season, when he went 18-31-5, averaging 3.16 goals and a save percentage of .889, in 55 games he recorded two shutouts (54). . Part of that is the Kraken who needs to improve his defense overall, especially in penalties (74.9%, Vancouver he tied for 30th with the Canucks). But they’ve been slow to grow and have made enough progress with a roster that could be an 80-plus point team, which is a 20-point improvement from last season.

If Jack Campbell Being healthy gives the Edmonton Oilers a better chance of winning the playoffs.I think it’s the same situation as Darcy Kemper Colorado last season. Like Kemper, Campbell isn’t an elite number one, but he’s reliable and can come up with big games. He needs insulation, but he’s rarely the Oilers’ biggest concern.

Avalanche wants the same from Georgiev. be serviceable. Do the save you are supposed to do. And make some saves that help the team snatch the occasional victory.

Their biggest question mark is Ilya Samsonov When Matt Murray As a tandem of goalkeepers. The Maple Leafs are one of the best offensive teams in the NHL, so subpar goaltending is enough to make them a playoff team. But what matters is the playoffs. Their success or failure will influence the direction of this season and beyond. And they won’t go anywhere in the playoffs with subpar goaltending.

appear Vitaly Kravtsov As a player with a legitimate chance at the Calder Trophy? He’s been penciled in as a right winger in the second line. Vincent Trochek When artemi panarinIf he stays, coupled with guidance from Panarin, it could be a great season. — @Leszek Gronowski

Kravtsov says he will be a contender for the Calder Trophy given to NHL rookies this year after showing what the New York Rangers forward has shown since being the 9th overall pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. Aggressive.

Kravtsov’s talent is undeniable. The Rangers want to believe him, and that’s why he agreed to a one-year deal on June 13, but he’s yet to sign a deal at the NHL level or on the small North American ice front. 4 goals (2 goals, 2 assists) in 20 NHL games. He has scored his 15 points (6 goals and 9 assists) in his 39 games of American Hockey in his league. His success has been limited to what he has achieved in Russia over the past two seasons in the Continental Hockey League, where he scored 22 goals in 68 appearances for Traktor Chelyabinsk, but last season saw the KHL He was limited to 34 games in the regular season and playoffs combined. The 22-year-old hasn’t been a great year of growth for the 22-year-old who refused to report to AHL’s Hartford after being pulled out of training last season. He has an early opportunity to play with his two high-end NHL forwards in Panarin and Trocek. If he can stay on that line, or at least stay in his group of top nine forwards in the Rangers, he’ll score some points and get Calder a chance to join his race.

in any way David Pastanak Are you interested in re-signing with the Bruins or are you planning on re-signing? It’s been a good year, but the feeling must be it David Craig When Patrice Bergeron Not many of his next contracts. — @Izzy Weiss

Pasternack is interested in re-signing with the Boston Bruins. He also said there was no rush to get anything done before a full season when he had to find his next move with his new coach, Jim Montgomery. Pastrnak has one season left on his six-year, $40 million ($6.67 average annual salary) contract, which allows him to be an unrestricted free agent. Of course, the Bruins and their fans want Pasternack to be detained for the long term, but the 26-year-old right-winger is waiting for it, especially to see how he meshes with Montgomery. It is wise to have some patience. Brad Marchand Forever, but he’s a star player in his own right, and the Bruins need to build around him if they can sign him long-term.

Video: David Pastrnak at No. 26 on NHL Network Countdown

Other than picking the bottom 6 forwards, what are the penguins focused on during camp? — @TopesWriter

The Pittsburgh Penguins have three new defenders who could be in the top six offseason additions. Jeff Petrie, Ty Smith When Jan Ruttathey traded Mike Matheson with the Montreal Canadiens John Marino Transferred to the New Jersey Devils and still has Chad Lewedel, Mark Freedman When Pierre-Olivier JosephSolving a defensive group that is in the top six is ​​a big part of a camp that has a lot of turnovers in the group.

You mentioned the bottom six forwards, and that’s a big part of it. Penguins have solid depth-scoring potential on the third line. Jeff Carter centered on Danton Heinen When Kasperi KapanenBut Kapanen scored 11 goals in 79 games last season, which isn’t enough for a player of his skill. At 26, he has a lot to prove. It can’t be done in training his camp, but we have to start here.

select right wing Sidney Crosby When Evgeny Malkin is also key. Rickard Raquel Getting an early opportunity with Crosby. Brian Last Malkin is getting that chance. Rust has been skating with Crosby a lot over the last few seasons.

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