Denver Post: Avs’ Duchene a keeper |

Denver Post: Avs’ Duchene a keeper

Adrian Dater
The Denver Post

Former Avalanche forward Dave Reid said the teenager was the best player available in the 2009 NHL draft. Don Cherry says he is going to be the NHL’s rookie of the year.

They’re both talking about Matt Duchene, not John Tavares or Victor Hedman. Time will tell if the two Canadian television hockey analysts are correct, but one thing appears certain: Duchene is going to stay the whole season with the Avalanche.

For the Avs to even think about sending the baby-faced 18-year-old center back to junior seems impossible now. Not only has he legitimately been one of the top players in the Avs’ first two games, he has created a buzz again inside the Pepsi Center.

Duchene has been one of those players who, when he comes on he ice for a shift, you notice fans leaning forward in their seats.

Great hockey players produce a slightly different sound from the crowd when they have the puck and do something good with it. Peter Forsberg had it, and so did Joe Sakic.

Duchene had the crowd oohing with a short-handed shift in Saturday’s matinee victory over Vancouver, stealing the puck twice and ragging it a bit in the Canucks’ zone, even firing a shot from his knees.

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