There’s not much a hockey coach can do. He can’t stop his players from making costly turnovers on the base games.
Avalanche coach Jared Bednar is not to blame for the club’s 0-4 exit and his third straight failure to make it through the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. He’s not to blame that the Vegas Golden Knights only became the fourth team in NHL history to defeat the No. 1 seed in a series after losing the first two games.
Blame it on the guys who made the turnovers that led directly to the Vegas goals in Games 5 and 6. Make no mistake, Vegas crept into the Avs’ head late in Game 2 – a game that the Knights deserved to win – and stayed there for a lot of Game 4.
But Bednar and his team helped the players regain their balance, and the Avs played well enough to win Games 5 and 6 had it not been for a combination of botched turnovers and deadly Vegas transition play. .
The Knights deserve credit for coming back from a 0-2 series deficit and dominating Games 3 and 4 at the highly electric T-Mobile Arena.
The Avs blew up the series, without even forcing a Game 7, and fans might want Bednar to disappear. I guess General Manager Joe Sakic won’t. He has invested too much in this club, including Bednar and his staff, and he’s not going to blow it up as a knee-jerk reaction after losing four straight games for the first time this season.
Sakic is much more likely to pass free agents without compensation Gabe Landeskog and Philipp Grubauer than to fire Bednar. Sakic has publicly stated that the Avs must tighten their belts for the 2021-22 season to afford one-of-a-kind star defenseman Cale Makar as well as fellow restricted free agents Tyson Jost, a forward and defenseman Conor Timmins, in addition to preparing to extend Nathan MacKinnon after the end of his friendly cap of $ 6.3 million after 2022-23.
As he said this, Sakic also mentioned making room for Landeskog and Grubauer. That may still be the plan.
But Sakic isn’t going to waste uncapped money doubling head coach salaries. Bednar is under contract until next season and the property probably sees this situation just like I do, that Bednar deserves to see it through.
Bednar is 184-149-39 in five seasons with the Avs, including 166-93-35 after that horrific 2016-17 first season in which he inherited the old, slow uninhibited roster of reunited Sakic and Patrick Roy. unprecedented. front office experience. Since then, Sakic and assistant GMs Chris MacFarland and Craig Billington have done an exceptional job in the draft, free will and rallies, and Bednar has done a great job coaching which he is entrusted with.
Bednar is 24-19 in the playoffs with the Avs, including 22-15 in the past three years. The window to win is always open.
Sakic and his staff are partners of Bednar, and while nearly every head coach in the NHL is ultimately fired or not re-signed, now is not the time for Bednar.
Watch Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper. A year after winning the 2019 Presidents’ Trophy and being swept aside by the No.8 seeded Columbus Blue Jackets, the Bolts stayed with Cooper and won the Stanley Cup in 2020.
As Wayne Gretzky once said, you have to lose before you can win. I thought the Avs’ previous two second-round losses (both in Game 7) were enough to help Colorado move past the top this year.
I was wrong. But it wasn’t all Bednar’s fault and he should have the chance to coach for another year.