Failed trade between the Avalanche and the Canadiens: massive mistake

Aaron Itovitch
April 23, 2024  (11:43)

Montreal Canadiens and Colorado Avalanche logos
Photo credit: Colorado Hockey Now

Last night, the Colorado Avalanche began their playoff journey without former Montreal Canadiens forward Jonathan Drouin, who is sidelined due to a lower-body injury.

Unfortunately for Jared Bednar's team, this first game did not go as planned. Indeed, the Avalanche conceded seven goals to the Winnipeg Jets, losing by a score of 7 to 6.
This first match highlighted a significant weakness in the 2022 champions as Russian goaltender Alexandar Georgiev only made 16 saves on 23 shots, ending his night with a dreadful save percentage of 0.696.
While the Avalanche's dominance this season has allowed their goaltenders to post acceptable statistics, last night's game confirmed a very important piece of information: Jared Bednar's team will have a lot of trouble repeating their feats from two years ago with the Georgiev-Annunen duo in net.

Trade with the Canadiens? A missed opportunity for the Colorado Avalanche

Speaking of goaltenders, it is recalled that, just before the trade deadline, numerous rumors had Canadiens' goalie Jake Allen heading to the Avalanche. However, Colorado's GM, Chris MacFarland, refused to pay the conditional third-round pick, even though he was fully aware that his team needed help in the crease.
As a result: Jake Allen was ultimately traded to the New Jersey Devils, where he performed excellently in the final stretch of the regular season.
In this context, Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar did not mince words in criticizing his goaltender after the game, stating that Georgiev would need to be better if the team hopes to advance to the next round.
"We're going to need more stops to win." - Jared Bednar

Honestly, he's not wrong!
The problem is, if Alexandar Georgiev is unable to regain his form, it could potentially lead to the Avalanche's elimination. The team's second goaltender, Justus Annunen, has only 18 NHL games of experience, making it unlikely that Jared Bednar would choose to throw him into the fray.
This situation certainly underscores the importance a trade between the Montreal Canadiens and the Colorado Avalanche could have had. Jake Allen has played over 400 games in the NHL, including winning a Stanley Cup with the St. Louis Blues.
There is no doubt that his presence could have offered an interesting solution for the head coach, especially if Alexandar Georgiev continues to struggle. It's a safe bet that right now, the Avalanche would willingly offer a third-round pick to the Canadiens to add an experienced goalie to their roster.
"I can't help but wonder what this game would have looked like if Jake Allen were playing for the Avalanche instead of sitting in a television studio in Toronto." - Arpon Basu

Certainly, it will be interesting to see if Alexandar Georgiev, along with the rest of the team, will be able to bounce back in game number two, otherwise their playoff run may be short-lived.
Credit Habs et LNH:
Transaction entre le CH et l'Avalanche: une grosse erreur du Colorado
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Failed trade between the Avalanche and the Canadiens: massive mistake

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