Team Recap: 40th-Seeded ’77-’78 Colorado Rockies

The #40 seed in the inaugural Ultimate NHL Playoff, the '77-'78 Colorado Rockies.

The #40 seed in the inaugural Ultimate NHL Playoff, the ’77-’78 Colorado Rockies.

  • Fred Ahern (RW)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   Even   5 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Barry Beck (D)
    • 4 GP   0 G   1 A   1 P   -5   15 S   0 GWG   2 PIM   0 Stars
  • Mike Christie (D)
    • 4 GP   0 G   1 A   1 P   -2   2 S   0 GWG   2 PIM   0 Stars
  • Joe Contini (C)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -5   8 S   0 GWG   4 PIM   0 Stars
  • Gary Croteau (LW)
    • 4 GP   0 G   3 A   3 P   -6   4 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Ron Delorme (C)
    • 3 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   Even   0 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Denis Dupere (LW)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -3   1 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Tom Edur (D)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -6   9 S   0 GWG   4 PIM   0 Stars
  • Doug Favell (G)
    • 4 GP   0-4-0   4.50 GAA   .899 SV%   0 SO   2 Stars
  • Paul Gardner (C)
    • 4 GP   3 G   1 A   4 P   -5   5 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Rick Jodzio (LW)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -4   0 S   0 GWG   2 PIM   0 Stars
  • Mike Kitchen (D)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -5   5 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Bryan Lefley (D)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -2   2 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Roger Lemelin (D)
    • 1 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   Even   0 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Dennis Owchar (D)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -1   1 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Wilf Paiement (RW)
    • 4 GP   1 G   1 A   2 P   -9   14 S   0 GWG   2 PIM   0 Stars
  • Randy Pierce (RW)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -4   1 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Michel Plasse (G)
    • 3 GP   0-0-0   0.67   .955 SV%   0 SO   0 Stars
  • Larry Skinner (C)
    • 4 GP   0 G   0 A   0 P   -3   3 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • Andy Spruce (LW)
    • 4 GP   0 G   1 A   1 P   Even   3 S   0 GWG   0 PIM   0 Stars
  • John Van Boxmeer (D)
    • 4 GP   1 G   0 A   1 P   -5   10 S   0 GWG   2 PIM   0 Stars

Bold – Team Best

Team Stats:

  • Record: 0-4-0
  • Goals Scored: 5
  • Goals/Game: 1.25
  • Goals Allowed: 20
  • Goals Allowed/Game: 5.00
  • Shots: 91
  • Shots Allowed: 222
  • Shots/Game: 22.8
  • Shots Allowed/Game: 55.5
  • # of PP’s: 5
  • PPG’s: 0
  • PP%: 0.0%
  • TSH: 6
  • PPGA: 2
  • PK%: 66.7%
  • Penalties in minutes: 16

We’re now getting to the very worst in terms NHL franchises. No offense. The Colorado Rockies lasted for six seasons, after two years as the Kansas City Scouts, and then moved onto New Jersey to become the Devils. This was also the “best” team in Rockies history in terms of points and playoffs, but it’s not exactly a good team.

1st Round:

Swept by 25th-seeded ’05-’06 Ottawa Senators, 4-0

Coached by Pat Kelly, the ’77-’78 Colorado Rockies finished with a record of 19-40-21, which as good for 59 points and 2nd in the Smythe Division. Yeah that division was poopy. This Rockies team finished ninth in the league out of 18 teams in goals for with 257 (3.21/game) and 13th in the league in goals against with 305 (3.81/game). Hockey Reference ranked the Rockies’ strength of schedule as the fifth “easiest” in the league, and their SRS rating system had the Rockies ranked as the 12th “best” team in the league. The ’77-’78 Rockies’ SRS rating (-0.62) is the highest during their time in Colorado. The Rockies made the playoffs that year because, well, someone else in that division had to take a playoff spot. They got swept in the best-of-three Preliminary Round by the Philadelphia Flyers.

They did have a couple notable All-Star caliber players in Wilf Paiement and defenseman Barry Beck. Paiement and Beck were first and second on the team in points with 87 and 60, respectively. Fellow defenseman John van Boxmeer was third on the team in points with 54. Paiement was also the team’s leading goal-scorer with 31. Paul Gardner was right behind him with 30 goals, but in just 46 games, and Beck was third with 22 goals. Paiement, of course, was also the team’s leading assist-getter with 56 and Van Boxmeer and Beck were second and third with 42 and 38, respectively. There were only four Rockies players who finished above even in plus/minus. Defenseman Tom Edur, who only appeared in 20 games, posted the best plus/minus rating at +10 and winger Denis Dupere, who played 54 games, was right behind him with a +9 rating. In goal, three goalies made double digits in appearances, but Doug Favell was the #1. He made 47 appearances and posted a 3.58 goals against average, which was the lowest among all three goalies to make 10+ appearances for the Rockies. He was the starter in the two playoff games for the Rockies and allowed six total goals.

Up next is the #41 seed, the ’21-’22 Hamilton Tigers!

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