Thanks to their current four-game losing streak, the Colorado Avalanche find themselves stuck in the Western Conference basement, two points back of 14th-place Calgary.
Clearly, the losses are starting to affect the team’s psyche.
That’s what defenseman Jan Hejda told the Denver Post on Monday, saying the team has struggled mentally since losing 4-0 at home to Edmonton on Mar. 12 — a loss that began the current winless streak, during which the Avs have been outscored 20-9.
“Everything starts with that loss to Edmonton,” Hejda explained. “We lost confidence. Everybody is trying (not) to make a mistake.”
As you probably guessed by the 20-9 scoring discrepancy, defense is an issue in Denver.
The Avs have allowed four goals in each of their last four losses and are getting manhandled at even strength (the penalty kill has actually been decent, killing off nine of the last 11.)
Unfortunately for Colorado, Hejda has no answers on how to fix the solution.
“D-zone coverage, we have no rhythm right now,” he said. “Four games in a row we’ve allowed four, five, six goals against. Not acceptable. I don’t know. We have to simplify it, probably.”
Looking for a silver lining, Avs fans? Here’s Mike Chambers of the Post with something…
On a positive note, the Avs are on the road to getting a high percentage on the No. 1 draft pick in June, and bringing projected all-world defenseman Seth Jones back to Colorado.
Seth, Popeye’s kid, grew up playing for the Littleton Hawks and Colorado Thunderbirds until age 12, when he moved back to Dallas, where he was born.
So there’s something, I guess.