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Realistically, EVERY game they have lost, they lost by one point. EVERY game they lost, they led the majority of the game. EVERY game they have lost, they have controlled play for more than half the game. EVERY game they have lost, they have scored a good number of goals. EVERY game they have lost, they have had dissapointing goaltending and too many penalties at the end of the game.

That sounds to me like a good team in a BAD funk. They've given up 3 goal leads TWICE in 5 games against mediocre teams (I am standing by my claim that the Preds and Kings are mediocre). They have absolutely destroyed teams in the games they held it together. They are capable of scoringe 4 goals every period and they've proven that. If they could only keep from being scored ON 4 times a period...

"Craptastic" goaltending is definately what I see, but also, lacking some strength on Defense in front of the net. Sure, you can't tackle and impale the guys beating on the goalie anymore, but you can still get a big body in there with a stick right on his blade and give it a good THWACK as the puck is on the way. All of the good scoring against the Avs has been little saucer passes right across the front of the crease. That shouldn't fly. There should be a man on that outlet like flies on honey. My hockey coach rips into anyone who leaves more than 3 inches between himself and a man in front of the net. That, my friend, is poor defense or poor coaching or something.

Coach Q seems to have a philosophy of leaving more "space" for opposing forwards to move around in front of the goal. Maybe that's respect for the stricter rules, but I think they need to get in there and beat the hell out of anyone who walks in like that. I haven't seen too many plays where an avs forward was able to just stand there and make an easy cross-ice pass into a nice open-net goal. They have to beat their way in and fight for those passes or take it flying in a 25mph.

The avs difficulties lie squarely on the defense, and accusing May of "not cutting it" is silly because while he's a "tough guy" we don't need more "craptastic" penalty-taking drones like Worrell... we need more two-way forwards like Foresburg was. I'm happy with Svatos - he's good two ways and generates a lot of turnovers and can put the puck in the net when he needs to. He leads the team in game-winning goals and is second or third in overall points, plus leads in takeaways (that used to be Forsberg's thing).

You know, thinking about it, they seem to be losing confidence in their goaltenders and overcomitting to the shot, rather than covering the pass and letting the shots fly (and get saved), like they did with Roy.

With the defenders overcomitting, it leaves the backdoor outlet pass open and teams have been absolutely picking them off because of it.

Maybe that's it? Their idea of defense and "holding a lead" involves over-comitting to defensive shot-blocking and forgetting that there actually is a goalie who is SUPPOSED to make saves on bad-angle shots behind them.

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