Colorado was coming off their worst season in franchise history since moving to the Denver area from Quebec City in 1995. The Avalanche jumped from 32 wins in 2008-09 to 43 wins last year as first year coach Joe Sacco did a remarkable job in meshing the bright young talent assembled by general manager Greg Sherman and team president Pierre Lacroix. Colorado opened as a +4000 choice at Sbg global to win the Stanley Cup this season, which shows that the gambling public is buying into what they saw last year.
Loss of Value?
The one point of NHL hockey betting concern about Colorado heading into the 2010-11 season is that they will no longer be a surprise team that catches opponents and oddsmakers off guard. With rising expectations comes the potential loss of board value and handicappers will have to carefully assess whether or not they are getting a fair price on the Avs this year. Sacco vows to take nothing for granted and he will work to maintain the focus of his young team.
Loaded with Young Skill Set
Matt Duchene had 48 points in the final 60 games of the season last year for Colorado as he came right out of the junior ranks to be a Calder Trophy finalist for rookie of the year. Paul Stastny is a 24 year old center that led Colorado with 79 points last year. Goaltender Craig Anderson emerged as a workhorse star that the team could rely on to keep them out of trouble. Anderson proved to be a key hockey betting asset with a 2.63 goals against average and 38 wins. The netminder set the tone for Colorado with a stellar start as the Avs bolted out of the gate and established themselves as an immediate playoff contender. By the time oddsmakers and opponents took them seriously it was too late to catch them.
Sacco faces the challenge of not letting last season go to the heads of his young team. The margin for error in NHL hockey betting is razor thin and the slightest let up in effort and focus could put Colorado back into being an afterthought with gamblers and fans.