All eyes will be on Michael Hutchinson tonight in Detroit, as he makes his Avalanche debut against the Red Wings (just like I predicted the other day, by the way).
Look, the Avs might be able to win this game with a pylon in net. Detroit is flat-out awful, on a pace to have fewer points than the Avs’ total of 48 in 2016-17. They are an NHL team, however, on home ice. And, Michael Hutchinson was flat-out awful with Toronto this year, before the trade to the Avs.
If there is one game it made sense to put Hutch in the net, it’s this one. I want to point out, though, that Michael Hutchinson has had a very good year in the NHL before. He was 21-10-5 fo the Winnipeg Jets in 2014-15, with a .914 saves percentage. He finished eighth in the voting for the Calder Trophy that season, in fact.
So, this is a big night for him in many ways. A successful start to his Avs career, and he can start feeling good about himself again. A loss to the Red Wings? It would be a continuation of a bad season.
Per the Avs, Andre Burakovsky won’t play again tonight. It’s nothing serious, I am told, but there’s obviously something wrong that’s lingering.
I will be at Bender’s tonight, watching the game. Stop by and say hello. Use the promo code word “Dater” and the first beer or soft drink is on us. It’s across from the Westminster Promenade, 104th and US 36. Best hockey bar in Colorado, bar none.
I will be back on the road with the team this coming weekend, coronavirus be damned.