Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Sacco Gambit

Joe Sacco said it was a must-win. We are a quarter of the way into the season. We were up 7 points on the Vancouver Canucks, leading the division, second in the conference, top 5 in the league. Sure, the Avs haven’t been nearly as hot in November as they were in October. But pulling out the must-win gambit seems like a rookie mistake.
Today the Avs are on road in Alberta. After that 8-2 debacle, what are we faced with on this road trip?
Let's check the Word thesaurus: “must win” can also be;
have to win
have got to win
be obliged to win
ought to win
should win
be required to win
necessity win
obligation win
Never mind the grammar. That is but a minor concern here!
Add those to your lexicon of lame declarations Mr. Sacco. You can use all of these and more, no doubt. But can you do it without eye-rolling by every guy in the dressing room?
What’s the chance that Sacco lost some of the players with this move? Like Foote, Hejduk, Duchene…? Probably not but was it really smart to call game 20 a must win?
Let's say the game turned out 8-2 in favor of the Avalanche. What would have been accomplished by that? Make the playoffs? Move into first place? What? Wasn't much point to it, was there?
The ‘Nucks are sitting around for nearly a week while the Avs have a chance to go get 4 more points on them. So again, what was the emergency? You would think that a guy like Steve Konowalchuk would have signaled Sacco that this was an apprentice ploy.
Was the incredible start to the season giving Sacco a Mark Messier ego? I am the Sacco! This is a must-win, therefore…WE SHALL WIN!
Whew, talk about laying an egg.
Was he thinking that Luongo was still going to be in early season "form" and let everything but the kitchen sink into the goal?
It's a small mistake for now…for now.
Chances are the exuberant energy that has been a blessing for Sacco so far in the season will work in his favor. The guys won’t think about it much, they just want to play. And they want to win, they don’t need manufactured tactics.
Let's hope he and the team just move on and forget the Sacco Gaffe.
-From the Point


  1. it could have something to do with the team having lost 4 of the last 6 and not wanting them to lose their "we can beat anyone" mentality. If a young team like this loses that feeling this soon in the season they will miss the playoffs.

  2. Yes, no doubt they need a kick in the pants, I just don't think he went about it the right way. I mean why not put the pressure on them for tonights game? At least 1st place is up for grabs.

  3. I'm not saying that I would have pulled the "must win" card but it's a little unfair to criticize the move. Worst thing he can do is wait till it's too late. Once this team looses confidence it's all done. The thing I really question is the effort from the team after Sacco's comments. If the team had put up a good effort this wouldn't be an issue.

    I think he would have been better off challenging individual players like Wolski, Stastny and maybe Hejduk. They've been doing ok and putting up good numbers but a strong dominating performance from them would really get the rest of the team rolling again.

  4. Well then, we agree that playing the must-win card is not what we would have done.
    Sacco has said repeatedly that his team will be hard to play against. Not the case Sat night, so they just made him look stupid. Hopefully they feel bad about it and will play damn hard tonight. If they don't, I will be pretty worried.