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Matchup Monday. Who's Better: Colorado or Tampa? Mon's Buzzcast

April 19, 2021, 12:59 PM ET [26 Comments]
Eklund
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Today we go back to one of my favorite topics...Who is Better? Whenever I do this I have to throw props back to one of the most influential publications of my youth. The Hockey Digest. The Digest was a small, paperback-sized, monthly publication that, along with the Hockey News, WAS the internet for hockey fans alive the 1970s and 1980s.

The "Who is better?" segment was always my favorite. They would have Bossy vs. Kurri or Langway vs. Robinson, etc...

So, now that trade season is passed, I will be doing this as a regular segment on Mondays. In the comments, please list matchups you would like to see and if I use one I will credit you in the blog and you will be the talk of the town....

Now, in general this will compare players, but it can compare coaches, fan bases, announcers, or even mascots (if we run out of all other options I suppose...). It can also be like today and compare teams.

So I thought, why not start off with the one question I think we all have in a season where teams only play 6 or 7 other teams...

Who is Better: The Colorado Avalanche or the Tampa Bay Lightning

I will start off by saying, there are many who feel Tampa or Colorado aren't even the two best teams. Vegas and Toronto are good teams...The Islanders are a crazy tough out. Edmonton could cause all sorts of issues. Carolina with good goaltending, can play with anyone...ALL TRUE.

But this is my call today, and I believe Colorado and Tampa are the two best teams in the NHL.

Overall Team:

Experience is a big factor when it comes to winning the Stanley Cup. There is no question that Tampa has this part in spades...They say you have to learn how to lose before you win. And Tampa has done both. They have been through it all already and they are Cup Champs. Colorado could have been better in the bubble, had they not lost both goalies and so many other key players.. That experience did help them to learn how to lose, but the fact that the injuries and the bubble were factors, may have stunted that growth a bit.

Regular Season:

Colorado has been better, in what may be a better division....(Central vs West?) Tampa has been wildly inconsistent this year, but the fact that they were missing Kucherov all year AND the fact that the inspiration of a Cup Champ playing in the regular season is always hard.

Forwards...
The Avalance have been slightly better scoring 3.58 GPG to Tampa's 3.36. Colorado's 3.56 is the best in the NHL. In fact, the ONLY team to finish with an average GPG higher than 3.5 in the last five years is the 2018-2019 Tampa Lightning.

Defense...
Colorado sits 3rd in the NHL with 2.33, while Tampa is 8th with 2.88

Goal.

Grubauer has been MUCH better than anyone expected and has proven doubter that he is a legit #1, but in a playoff series, Vasilevsky...he is simply the best.

Coaching

Slight advantage here to Cooper, but it is basically a wash...

Who is Better?
With both teams healthy, and Kucherov back, I am not willing to hand over the keys yet...

Tampa is the better team...

Your thoughts?



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