The 2016-17 season was a disastrous one for the Colorado Avalanche pretty much across the board.
They not only ended up missing the playoffs for the third year in a row and the sixth time in the past seven years, they ended up finishing with the NHL’s worst record, recording just 48 points. More than 20 behind the NHL’s second-worst team. Those 48 points ended up being the worst point total for any team in an 82-game season (including the tank-for-McDavid Buffalo Sabres teams) since the NHL went to the three-point game format at the start of the 2005-06 season. The only teams that finished with a worse point total were teams during the lockout shortened 48-game season in 2013.
The only offseason additions the team has made this season have been to bring in goalie Jonathan Bernier, buy a huge lottery ticket in Nail Yakupov, and make a decent trade for Colin Wilson. They also have prized prospect Tyson Jost ready to make the leap to the big leagues on a permanent basis, but they will also still probably lose Matt Duchene at some point to a trade. They also still have a haphazardly pieced together defense that isn’t particularly strong.
Is that enough to make up 20 points in the standings to get out of the cellar?
But Adam, you’re probably saying, there is an expansion team in the NHL this season and they might be contenders for the worst record in the NHL. And they certainly could be!
But keep in mind that the NHL’s past nine expansion teams finished with an average of 57 points in their first season, including five that finished with at least 65.