Friday, February 13, 2009

It's (gonna be) All About Cody Mac

Cody McLeod, that is. Who dares borrow the motto of Lappy lovers the world over? Well, I do. And I’m tellin’ you right now that this guy is going to be an important part of the Avalanche in the future. Laperriere has been an important guy on this team since the Avs picked him up for the 2005-06 season. Lappy isn’t Joe Sakic but I think most people would agree that he has leadership abilities that a team needs. He fights, he never stops yapping at the opponent, he kills penalties...Lappy is the kind of player every team needs. I’ve got a bulletin for you all, Lappy isn’t getting any younger, and his contract is up this season and he very well could be traded if the Avs decide to be sellers. Personally I think the Avs would be smart to sign him for a couple more years. But this isn’t about Lappy, it’s about McLeod.

Cody McLeod is rapidly becoming a guy the Avs can count on. McLeod is always hustlin’, always jawin’ at somebody and isn’t averse to tossin’ an octopus…back to whence it came! In the future he could be the leader that Lappy is today. He could be that guy. At the beginning of this season a lot of people thought that the Avs had signed on too many gritty guys. I would agree, and I don’t recall thinking that McLeod was going to be a stand out amongst them, surely that was more likely going to be a guy like Tucker. Regardless of what Tucker’s problem is this season, McLeod has risen above the average grinder. Guite, McCormick, guys like that aren’t that hard to find. McLeod has become what Tucker was supposed to be, what Lappy has been.

McLeod is one of the few guys on this team residing on the positive side of the +/- statistic. McLeod is on pace to hit 18 goals, 24 points and 170 PIM. And McLeod, like Lappy doesn’t take many bad penalties, he often brings an opposing player to the box with him. At a salary of about $500,000 he is one of the lowest paid players on the Avalanche. Next year he is an RFA, so the Avs don’t need to worry about losing him, but I think they would be wise to do what they can to make him happy.

Granted, McLeod could be having a once in a lifetime season, no one can really know one way or another until we get a couple years down the line. Reporters seem to all be asking him the same question: are you surprised at how much rubber you’ve put at the back of the net? McLeod seems to be taking it in stride but I’m getting the feeling he isn’t as surprised as they are. In his 2004-05 (WHL) season he put 31 in the net, totaled 60 points and nearly 200 penalty minutes. At his age and presumably reasonable salary, there’s no reason not to find out what the future of this kid holds. The similarities between McLeod and Lappy; a love to jaw, ain’t afraid to fight and just a little bit unpretty. What have the Avs got to lose?
Posted by: From the Point

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