Avs have been a bit lucky

Matchsticks and Gasoline, a Calgary Flames blog, had an interesting short post this morning that shows concern with the fact Calgary is leading the league in shooting percentage at 16.51%. the reason there is cause for concern is because it is incredibly unlikely that Calgary will continue to shoot that well (They can't be lucky enough to face Roberto Luongo EVERY game.).

This is good for Avs fans, because it means that it's likely that Calgary's high powered offense will cool off soon. But how have the Avs been? I mean the Avs have been outshot in every single game, yet are 6-1-1. Part of that is because they are 4th in the league in shooting %, at an impressive 14.06%.

But, like Calgary (and Edmonton's 15.1%), that number is going to come down. Last season Boston led the league in shooting % at 10.88%. The Avs are equally as unlikely to finish the season with 133 points in the standings (which is what they're on pace for), so it should not come as a surprise that at some point the offense will cool off. And let's face it, the Avs have gotten at least 4 incredibly lucky goals. They got 2 off of skates in the Montréal game, and Mike Komisarek put one in his own net with his head. Darcy Tucker had a goal that probably should have been ruled a kick (especially considering Jason Arnott's similar goal was waived off in Nashville).

Photo from Getty Images, via Yahoo

At the same time, the Avs are creating their own luck. All four of the lucky goals I mentioned above have come from players crashing to the front of the crease, and creating more traffic in front of the net. In other words, they have put themselves in a position to get those lucky breaks. That didn't happen last season, and it showed in the shooting % (The Avs were 29th in the league with 8.05%). Also the Avs are playing a lot smarter and creating much better chances, which is resulting in better % shots (like the 2 vs 1 to tie the Red Wings game)

These numbers indicate that the Avs have gotten a bit lucky (again a lot of that is their own doing), and they need to start finding a way to get more shots on net. Because if they fall to an overall shooting percentage of 10%, which would still be top 10 last season, at their current clip of 24 shots per game they still would only get 197 goals, which is less than last seasons anemic offense.


  1. They were lucky on that redirection in Montréal but it was evened out in the same game against the Habs if you count the refs not seeing 7 Montréal players in the last flurry of shots in the final minute of the game lucky. Granted you could also call the Habs not scoring with 7 players lucky in the Avalanche's favor as well.

  2. There is no doubt in my mind that the firepower will remain for the Avs, the gray area continues to be on the defensive end. A question larger than if they can continue their scoring prowess, is can Anderson continue to block 30+ shots a game?

  3. 1) As we wrote today: Its the goaltending, stupid! Amazing how having a #1 guy who can make the important saves makes on a team!