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New Center for Disease Control recommendation is a likely death blow to Avalanche/NHL season




The Center for Disease Control just issued a “recommendation” that there should be no formal or informal assemblies of 50 or more human beings in the United States for the next EIGHT WEEKS.

I think the NHL season is toast, folks. As in, no playoffs and no Stanley Cup. I fervently hope I’m wrong on that, but there’s just no way a professional sports league is going to take the risk of going against the Center for Disease Control during a global pandemic.

What a turn of events. I mean, I’m 55 and have never had my head spun in more directions than the past 7-10 days or so. A week ago TONIGHT I was in San Jose covering an Avs-Sharks game. Tonight, that arena is closed down and there are no professional sporting events – or college, or high school or anything – in the entire United States.

What an absolute bummer. I feel in a state of semi-shock as I write this. I am trying to make sense of what the hell me and my family are going to do for the next eight weeks, and how I’m going to keep making a living as a sports writer with zero sports to cover. I run an Avalanche-only website, with no Avalanche hockey to write about. A team that was ready for, I believe, a real Stanley Cup run. I liked their chances.

I hate to have just used the past tense about their chances.

This thing is done. Eight weeks, minimum, of no crowds, as recommended by the CDC, just unofficially eliminated the rest of the NBA/NHL seasons, not to mention pushing everything else way back. We don’t even know where ANY of this is going. Eight weeks might seem like a picnic. Maybe this goes on for months. This is brutal. I make a good portion of my living writing for a big sports betting site, and that income is GONE for as long as this thing lasts, and I’m PISSED ABOUT IT.

Yet, I know this: As of this moment, I have my health. I have a wife who has her health and a son who has his health. I am damn LUCKY.

The money lost? That’s life, kid. As one of my favorite lines from one of my favorite movies (Wall Street) goes, “Money is only something you need if you don’t die tomorrow.”

Yep. Day by day. Living in the moment, not worrying about the future or mourning the past. We have to somehow all get through this. Yeah, that sounds nice and reasonable. But, wait, what? Eight weeks cooped up in my house? Eight? Folks, I’ve read all the Stephen King books and all of Plato and Aristotle and the Ilyad and the Odyssey. I’ve listened to all the latest Joe Rogan and Kiss podcasts.

Sports has always been the thing that’s taken my mind off anything going on. Now, it’s gone. Or, is it? Maybe my son and his friends can organize kickball or whiffleball games like me as a kid and I can convince the bosses at the sports betting site to consider wagers on these games and everything will be OK and….ok, no.

First off, my son and his friends are not going to be out playing whiffleball. They’ll be inside playing/using their 2020-electronic instruments of entertainment, just like always.

Honestly, I don’t know who to believe anymore on this whole thing, and that’s what has me more mad than anything. On the one hand, you have doomsayers saying 150 million people in this country will be infected. On the other hand, you have people like Doctor Drew (hey, laugh if you must, but he’s a pretty prominent doctor) saying this is all way overblown and that the media are doing everyone a massive disservice overstating the real risk of this thing.

Superstreak Bonus!

This whole thing has brought out my cynical, don’t-trust-authority, bitter side to my personality. I want to point fingers at everyone for this thing becoming what it has – the politicians, the media, Twitter, Facebook, the Red Wings, everyone. (Kidding on that last one).

But then the more mature side of me kicks in and says, “What are ya gonna do Dater? What are any of us gonna do? We just have to deal with it and try to make the best of it.” 

OK, so about the site: Of course, it will go on. We WILL get Avalanche hockey at some point. I don’t think it will be until this fall, on a brand new season, but again: I HOPE I’M WRONG.

One of the, I think, smart things I did when I started the site was keep the prices pretty low. So, in case anything bad happened (maybe I die four months in, after site launch – hey it could have happened) then I think most of you would have been OK with your low yearly rate out of pocket, and not stormed my site administrator for refunds.

My site launched on June 13. So many of you are paid through that date. Even if we lose all of April and May to all things Avs, we’ll have things like the draft and free agency and all the other good stuff that comes with hockey back in gear and I know – or trust anyway – that you will want to keep reading about that stuff.

The cruel irony is: we were just about to really go to another level of coverage here, with the playoffs approaching.

I don’t think we have the playoffs at all anymore. The CDC should be heeded more than anyone right now, obviously. No chance – none – a commissioner such as Gary Bettman, a lawyer by trade, is going to go against the CDC.

I wish I never had to write this column. It was depressing to me, truly.

But let’s just try to get through this, eh?

Hey, and if anyone wants to put a few bucks in that “Avs Travel Tip Jar”, don’t let me stop you. (Look to the side here, the link is probably near there). You’ll help guarantee the lights stay on with this thing if you do. I will also increase the donation from 5 cents of every dollar donated to the Thornton Food Bank to 20 cents. And, I mean it, I would never eff around with the money on something like that.

I’m also open to any and all suggestions for what you want to read, as an Avs fan. Do you want me to tell lots of old Avs stories? Want “Best of”, “Worst of” lists?

Tell me, and I’ll do it. Shit, I got nothin’ else to do now.

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Adrian Dater - Kiss and Larry Bird fan. Writer with @Gambling and @Bookies, Avs Insider with 104.3 The Fan. Denver Post, SI, Bleacher Report alum, author of seven books.

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Best of/history of would be good as the known story of winning 2 cups in the first 6 years. Details on how the team and players adapted to the move to Denver? Maybe things like that along with Storytime?

Clyde L. Waller

We’re with you AD. We will continue to support you and we all look forward to getting through this together.


They couldn’t have playoffs running from May 10th to the end of July?


This sucks, but we will get though this. I will continue to renew, no worries there pal. Honestly, your subscriber ship might take a little dip but you said yourself you were ahead of the 1st year goal so hopefully you can absorb it. I’m confident it will pick back up when we get going again. These Avs will be good for the foreseeable future so that’s a major plus here. Maybe write about memorable roadies in key moments/games in Avs history. Pull in your old running mates and brainstorm on stories. Pull in some former Avs, hockey players have… Read more »


Old Avs stories, AD. You have more of those than anyone.


Restart the fireside stories of yore kinda like what you did for BSN. 1 per week. You can even mention a site sponor to keep them happy throughout this whole ordeal 😉


Also try and get Josh Kroenke for an interview. I haven’t read anything lately that quotes him…. Just lob him softball questions like “hey does the virus situation allow KSE to deepen it’s roots in the community” sorta questions and he’ll probably go for that

Hayden J Maag

I had the same thought reading the CDC recommendations. I knew having the playoffs was wishful thinking but this seals it. I’m an ER doctor and the next few weeks (hopefully not months) are going to…well they are going to suck. In the meantime – I would love to read stories from Avs teams from this century. I was 5 when they won the first cup and not much older during the blood feud days. I’ll read anything I can get my hands on when it comes to the Avalanche but feel a deeper connection to the teams I actually… Read more »

Chris Hiebert

AD – something to write about- the Avs have largely treaded water since the three main HOF’s retired. Is the current team constructed to go on a similar period of success to the 1996 – 2003 squad (particularly with a current diminishment of contenders in the West)? Goaltending would seem to be an issue though.

Bob L

How about a history of professional hockey in Denver/Colorado, from IHL, CHL, NHL, any professional league…as filler during this hiatus.

James m

A whole inch of us aren’t going anywhere and will be renewing … I mention every time it makes sense that “Blood Feud” is the best sports book I have ever rad… you give us more o that combined with what you see, hear, and think is relevant and meaningful in the present going forward … know that doesn’t touch what you are losing from the betting site but hopefully it and increased traffic/advertising here can offset long enough … hang tough big man!


AD-same person as”Troian” – easier to type at proper keyboard! You’ve earned our support. Your ideas sound like interesting reading. I would love for you to, to the extent you are comfortable, to compare/contrast the current Avs team (in theory for this year and then projecting going forward) to the ’96-’02 Avs…what those teams did and didn’t do, how and why it happened, what how that is or isn’t applicable 20 years later…how the current roster and coach and GM and ownership lines up or doesn’t, and what that might mean…no one better to pull that off than you, and… Read more »


Honestly AD,ill need some Avs stories. Everything here is stopped, my only source of fun out of the job was the Avs, i work on “essential services” so next week/months will be like hell. Wife will partially stop working, till cuz of this sh!t ans sources of hapiness will be rare so plz continu to entertain us with avs, old or not, stories.


Best of.. always good. However, I’d like to know about those impact games. Those that are not considered ‘best of’. I recall a game vs the flames where the Avs came back from what seemed an impossible lead to win the game. Was at that game and it was near hysteria.

Also, maybe some more interractive stuff between CHN and the fans. Even if it’s purely comical. Not suggesting it has to be PC. Off the top of my head for something very different… The WORST Team you could create out of a certain season, etc.

Matt Briggle

I won’t be going anywhere, this subscription is set to auto renew when it comes up. Things I would like to read/listen to. Your favorite stories of all the years you’ve covered this team, those are always good. With the current group, I would love it if you could arrange some phone interviews with some of the guys and go into some depth on their career paths. Talk the Memorial Cup run with MacK, the trade from St. Louis with EJ, back to back cups with Cole, all of those back stories that all the guys have that have led… Read more »

Erica Uphouse

First off…i will always and forever blame the Red Wings for everything bad.
I would love some best of/worst of articles.


I’ll renew!
Anyway: trust the doomsdayers. And they might even be understating things! Look at Italy. This thing is BIG. Bigger than anything since WW II. In Italy alone they had 370 people dying. In 24 hours! And their relatives can only say goodbye by video-call. Stay inside people and we’ll get back to normality by summer. And in this case: only trust the most pessimistic people – the math doesn’t lie- and take the most extreme measures! All of Europe is basically quarantined!
All the best!

Tyler Rowse

I would be interested in reading some stories about the locker room dynamics between the players during the 1995-2004 era; like how players interacted and any drama or funny events that occurred. The Simon-Crawford, Lemieux-Wolanin, and Eric Lacroix stories in your book were very interesting to me since there wasn’t as much access to the players back in those days. Oh and the Ricci-Elway story was classic!


I’m going to tip in some extra money. I’ve finally found my go-to-Avs guy when it comes to covering the team with all sorts of news.

Hang in there, AD!

As a European kid growing up in the 90’es, I’m really interested about the best European players who have been around besides the obvious. Players who had an impact on the team on/off the ice.


Since it’s been so long, how about recapping the whole rumors surrounding players being too concerned with their Vegas trip during an awful season, or maybe who the happy, laughing player(s) who landed on the radar of management during a terrible season? Maybe a deep dive into why Wolski fell out with the Avs, and eventually the NHL but found success in the KHL? Stastny and his free agency debacle? What was the real beef with Duchene and his teammates? Why did EJ not like Dutchy so much? Rumors are he’s the same old unlikable guy in Nashville. What exactly… Read more »

Grzegorz Kociuba

I’d love to hear a full story of Rocky Mountain Extreme team name… Full and real story, with unpublished facts 🙂


Yea would the logo have been something like the Avs’s ten year anniversary logo?


Thank you AD. How about a heroes and anti heroes of the locker room story? I’m always fascinated by player/coach/owner interactions and how it effects teams and their seasons.

Luke Waggoner

I could see a situation where the NHL starts playing without an audience in a few weeks, and then once the eight weeks is up, brings the fans back. That would allow the season to go on normally, in terms of games being played, but mostly hold to the CDC recommendation. The CDC can also rescind recommendations like this at any point. If the spread doesn’t go as expected, things can change quickly.


I vote no on the lists and yes for old time stories. There’s one I always remember but have never found a read about so I don’t know the origin. But it’s one of those legendary old Roy stories: A group of Avs players were playing cards on the plane including Roy and Sakic. It was on a road game in 95-96. Then Roy suddenly says ”You know we’re going to win the Cup this year?” and everyone else went all quiet and looked at each other. Don’t know who else was in that game besides Roy and Joe. What… Read more »

Dwayne Hall

I’d like to see a series of stories on players from 1996 through say, 2006. As many as you have, and not just the superstars.


Love the suggestion to interview Kroenke – another softball question for him is what he thinks of Hockey now after playing NCAA Division I basketball. Don’t know if the team and/or league will allow it, but would be interested in knowing what current players are doing – staying in Denver, going home, what types of workouts do they choose to stay healthy, how do they keep busy…


COVID-19 was created in a lab underneath Little Caesar’s arena to stop the Avs from winning a cup.


I’m always interested in stories about former NHL’ers lives after hockey. Seems like a pretty deep well if you want to keep eyeballs on the page. Also those former stars are also sidelined now…So they might have time to talk to a legend in Denver hockey journalism.


Another vote for behind the scenes stories and anecdotes. I heard one about the team bus stuck in the hotel Parking lot behind an armored car, shortly after Sakic’s offer from the Rangers was matched by the Avs. From the back someone told Joe to “move his car” so the team could get on the road!

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