Avalanche Briefs PICKARD A POSITIVE IN A NEGATIVE SEASON
edmonton, alberta» When you’ve had the type of disastrous season the Avalanche has endured, you have no choice but to look at any positives you can find.
One of those positives is 24-year-old goaltender Calvin Pickard. The 2010 secondround draft pick of the Avs is finally getting his chance to be a No. 1 goaltender.
Sure, his opportunity came with the seasonending groin injury to Semyon Varlamov. But in a lost season, the Avalanche can see what it has in Pickard — and he’s proving to be a steady presence in the crease.
“This is the most games he’s ever played. He will double his totals from previous years. He’s still a young guy, but he’s getting this opportunity and it’s only going to help him moving forward,” said Avs coach Jared Bednar.
Pickard made his 43rd appearance between the pipes Saturday when the Avs wrapped up a home-and-home series with the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place. He entered with a 13-25-2 record and a .909 save percentage and two shutouts.
“It’s been a tough season for us. We’re dead last, but it’s been a great learning experience for me, and I wouldn’t trade this opportunity for anything. I’ve had a lot of good games, and gone through some rough patches, but I know these are all things that will help me going forward,” said Pickard.
It wasn’t the biggest trade on NHL trade deadline day, but the acquisition of Swiss forward Sven Adrighetto from the Montreal Canadiens has paid off nicely for Colorado.
After bouncing back and forth between the Habs and the American Hockey League, the 24-year-old is making the most of his opportunity. In 10 games, Andrighetto has scored two goals and six points, showing chemistry with Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen.
“I’m getting the opportunity to play. I’ve been playing on the top two lines. I’ve been getting power-play opportunities. I’m playing more than 15 minutes a night. It’s a nice change,” said Andrighetto.