Currently, Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene is across the pond playing for Canada in the World Championship. The team picked up a 4-1 win over the Czech Republic on Friday. They are competing for their third straight gold medal. He has been a part of all three teams. Next season, he is hoping that he won’t be available for selection.
“Hopefully next year, it will be a playoff run instead,” Duchene told Mile High Sports.
With Canada, Duchene has enjoyed enormous success. He has an Olympic gold medal, two from the World Championship, and one from both the World Cup and Spengler Cup. He also played in 27 playoff games in his two OHL seasons with the (then) Brampton Battalion.
Matt Duchene is used to winning; but it’s something that has escaped him at the NHL level. Be it in Colorado or somewhere else, that is a trend he would like to change.
“At this point, I want to play winning hockey and whatever it takes for that to happen, whether it’s here or somewhere else – I would love for it to [be here] – I want to play in the playoffs,” Duchene told MHS. “I’ve got eight playoff games to my name right now and it’s been eight years. That’s just not enough; that’s the bottom line.”
Over the past two seasons, trade rumors have worn on Duchene. When you hear that you may be moved for long enough, you begin to accept it as a possibility. The losing wore on Duchene as well.
Now, Duchene is not the kind of man to deflect blame. He is as hard on himself as almost any player I have ever covered. He would be the first to tell you that 18 goals, 41 points and a minus-34 rating wasn’t good enough.
Duchene even understood the rumors. He knows changes are coming in Colorado.
“There’s no secret, there’s moves that will be made,” he said. “It’s kind of back to the drawing board for this franchise right now, there’s got to obviously be some changes to make this team competitive again.”
At the end of the season, Duchene became emotional when discussing the possibility of never playing a game in burgundy and blue. That being said, he has accepted the changing tide in Colorado, whether he fits in their future plans or not.
“At the end of the day, I’m not hoping for anything in particular. I just want a chance to compete for a Stanley Cup.”