EDISON, N.J. – Rule No. 1 in covering a team: Always leave enough time to make it to practice in case you get caught in some kind of unanticipated traffic jam. I violated that rule today, thinking a Saturday morning would make for lighter volume and therefore I could leave a little later than usual for a roughly 25 mile car ride. Wrong. Got caught in gridlock over some accident and didn’t make it on time. Sorry about that.
So, I’m writing this from a McDonald’s in Edison, N.J., (free wifi and I looove those McGriddle sandwiches. As others tweeted, Philipp Grubauer will get the start tonight for the Avalanche. The rest of the lineup stays the same, from the other night in St. Louis.
My thoughts on Groob getting the start: Well, I think he deserves it, based on his play against the Blues, but I also think the Avs want to give him more work, because he was hurt for that stretch and just hasn’t played a ton of hockey in a couple of months. And, I also think they want Groob to re-establish himself as the clear No. 1 guy, and the only way you can do that is by playing more and, hopefully, winning more.
Now, the Avs do play three games in four nights here in the New York/New Jersey area, so no doubt we’ll see Pavel Francouz for one of these next couple of games. If I had to bet, I’d bet that Francouz would start against the Islanders and the Avs would go back to Groob for the Tuesday game with the Rangers, but we’ll see.
Hey, don’t take the Devils lightly folks. They are 6-3-2 in the last 11 games and have beaten teams like Boston and the Islanders lately. They have actually been a better team since dealing Taylor Hall, so this won’t be any picnic tonight I don’t think.
Avs have to keep the foot on the gas to get these two points. No letups.
See you tonight, if I make it there on time that is.
By the way: I scored an incredible deal on accommodations here: five nights, $198 total, for a just-fine-by-me motel in Edison. I got great cable TV, firm bed and working wifi, so I’m fine. Your Avs Travel Tip Jar money and your subscription money is not being wasted, my good people.