If a bad night was getting shelled 9-1 by a division rival, an absolutely horrid night would be getting shelled by the same score and also losing your top forward to an injury. In Monday night's massacre, the Colorado Avalanche not only lost to the Flames, they lost the services of Matt Duchene. The Avalanche announced on Wednesday that Duchene will be lost to the team for an indefinite period of time to a hand injury, which was suffered late in the loss and could be more devastating to the team than the big loss itself.
Duchene has been a driving force for the Avalanche this season, but has only been able to carry the team so far in the standings, as the team has been spiraling out of control for a few weeks now. Duchene has been on pace to surpass his good rookie numbers from a season ago, having 21 goals and 26 assists in 57 games, ranking him 40th in pool scoring, going into Wednesday's action.
The loss of the team's leading scorer will be hard to overcome, especially if he's out for a significant portion of the remainder of the season. Since there is no real word as to how long he'll be out for, that's about all that can be said.
This could have a significant impact on the money situation in the pool, especially if Duchene starts to miss more than a week's worth of action. Allan S., the current pool leader, has been riding the great season from Duchene and now with Peter Forsberg retired, Allan is now missing two forwards for the stretch drive.
After Wednesday's games, Allan has a 7-point lead on Kristy and Don and 8 points on Chris M., so there is a chance over the next couple weeks for both leads to shrink, for sure. The 45-point gap to 4th place should be safe, however.
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