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Avs Offseason Moves Thread

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  • [Avs] Avs Offseason Moves Thread

    Aaron Palushaj not qualified by Colorado Avalanche; Matt Hunwick, Greg Zanon placed on waivers
    By Adrian Dater
    The Denver Post

    Say goodbye to Aaron Palushaj. We hardly knew ye, Paloosh.

    I thought he did a lot of good things with the Avs, but the team elected not to give the Michigan native a qualifying offer today. So he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

    Matt Hunwick and Greg Zanon were placed on waivers earlier today. If nobody claims them, they remain property of the Avs. I would guess that Hunwick will get picked up by someone, but I’m not too sure about Zanon.

    More later…

    I liked Palushaj. He did a pretty good job on the offensive side.

    And now no Hunwick and Zanon. I hope we have a good plan for picking up some decent FA defenseman.
    :lombardi:2019 Adopt-A-Bronco: Dr. Dre'Mont Jones

  • #2
    Hunwick and Zanon both passed waivers and will be staying on the team.
    :lombardi:2019 Adopt-A-Bronco: Dr. Dre'Mont Jones


    • #3
      Colorado Avalanche unlikely to be big players on NHL free agency
      Posted: 07/03/2013 12:01:00 AM MDT
      Updated: 07/03/2013 08:09:19 AM MDT
      By Adrian Dater
      The Denver Post

      Joe Sakic said Milan Hejduk, center, is mulling whether to return to the Avalanche this season. His departure could open up room for the Avs to pick up a free agent. (Andy Cross, Denver Post)

      What kind of a splash will the Avalanche make Friday, the start of the NHL free-agency period? Probably the equivalent of a feather falling onto the surface of a lake.

      While the Avs will do some window shopping and could be persuaded to come into the store regarding a couple of free agents, the team is likely to be quiet for a few reasons.

      The Avs have 22 players under contract for this coming season, plus another who will be soon in No. 1 draft pick Nathan MacKinnon. When MacKinnon signs, the Avs will be at the maximum 23 players a team can have on a roster.

      The Avs might soon lose defensemen Matt Hunwick and Greg Zanon, however, as both were placed on waivers Tuesday.

      If one or both are picked up by another team, the Avs will have openings on defense and could make a pitch for someone on the open market.

      Avalanche executive vice president of hockey operations Joe Sakic and coach Patrick Roy, however, indicated that Friday figures to be an uneventful day around the Pepsi Center.

      "You can only have 23 guys signed, but we'll see (if) and where we can improve the club," Sakic said.

      In a conference call with season-ticket holders Tuesday, Sakic and Roy said the team is wary of overpaying on a fairly weak free-agent crop this year, especially on defense.

      Of the players who figure to be available, Boston's Andrew Ference might be the most attractive, but the Avs likely would have numerous competitors for his services and probably wouldn't want to pay anything north of $3 million a year.

      The Avs need to be careful on the budget, despite having around $9 million of cap room, assuming Mac- Kinnon gets a maximum rookie contract averaging about $3 million per year. The team has lots of young players entering the final years of their deals.

      Paying huge money on a free agent now could hamper fitting players such as Matt Duchene, Gabe Landeskog and Ryan O'Reilly under next year's cap.

      In the conference call Tuesday, Sakic and Roy indicated a belief that the much-criticized Avs defensive corps will be better, even if no free agents are signed. Roy said the loss of Ryan Wilson for much of last season hurt and that his return will help greatly.

      Sakic said the team is high on youngster Tyson Barrie now that he has more experience, and added veteran Cory Sarich, obtained last week from the Calgary Flames, will be a nice addition.

      If Hunwick and/or Zanon leaves, other free-agent defensemen who might draw interest from the Avs include Toni Lydman, Douglas Murray, Rob Scuderi, Michal Rozsival, Jordan Leopold, Marc-Andre Bergeron and Ian White.

      The Avs have two players from last season who likely will hit the open market: Chuck Kobasew and longtime right wing and former captain Milan Hejduk.

      Kobasew will not be retained by the Avs, but it remains unclear what will happen with Hejduk. Sakic said Hejduk is pondering whether he wants to play this season.

      With Roy already having spelled out who will play where on his four lines — and Hejduk not included — it seems unlikely the Avs would sign him to another contract.

      Despite some big names available as forwards on the open market — Jarome Iginla, Daniel Briere, Mike Ribeiro — the Avs seem happy with their forward group and unlikely to make bids.

      We need to spend at least a little bit of money on a couple blueliners. What's our cap situation like? It shouldn't be too bad with all the mediocre players we have on the team.

      Why not spend some money on a decent player? If we can't keep O'Reilly next season (if his moronic contract even lets us release or trade him) try actually making some moves in FA if he doesn't pick it up this season.
      :lombardi:2019 Adopt-A-Bronco: Dr. Dre'Mont Jones


      • #4
        The Avs bought out Zanon's contract and now he's gone.

        Andre Benoit signed by Avs as NHL's free-agency period begins
        Posted: 07/05/2013 12:06:01 PM MDT
        Updated: 07/05/2013 12:30:33 PM MDT
        By Adrian Dater
        The Denver Post
        Sakic, "(Benoit) has good offensive skills and puck-moving ability and will be a good addition to our power play."

        In a move to add depth and perhaps a bit of offense to its blue line, the Avalanche on Friday signed defenseman Andre Benoit to a one-year, $900,000 contract as the NHL's free-agency period began.

        Benoit, 29, played 33 games for the Ottawa Senators last season, scoring three goals with 10 points, plus three points in five playoff games.

        Benoit's addition fills the roster spot vacated by Greg Zanon, whose contract was bought out by Colorado on Thursday.

        "Andre brings added depth to our blue line," said Avalanche executive VP of hockey operations Joe Sakic in a statement. "He has good offensive skills and puck-moving ability and will be a good addition to our power play."

        Benoit, 5-foot-11, 185 pounds, got his first real chance in the NHL with Ottawa last season, after several years in the minors where he was a top-scoring defenseman.

        With Ottawa's American Hockey League affiliate, the Binghamton Senators in 2010-11, Benoit scored 11 goals with 55 points in 73 games. He has a left-handed shot.

        Benoit's signing figures to be the only one Friday for the Avs, who have 22 players under contract for this coming season, plus another soon in top draft pick Nathan MacKinnon.

        Adrian Dater: 303-954-1360, [email protected] or

        We'll see how it works out.
        :lombardi:2019 Adopt-A-Bronco: Dr. Dre'Mont Jones


        • #5
          Posted July 5, 2013, 2:54 pm MT
          Avs sign several guys to entry-level, two-way contracts
          By Adrian Dater
          The Denver Post
          Adrian Dater
          Comments (14)
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          From the Avs, some signings of depth guys:
          DENVER – The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that the team has signed defenseman Nick Holden to a two-year contract, and defenseman Nate Guenin and forwards Guillaume Desbiens and J.T. Wyman each to a one-year contract. In addition, the Avs have re-signed forward David Van Der Gulik to a one-year deal and signed forward Colin Smith to a three-year, entry-level contract.

          Desbiens, 28, spent this past season with the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League, where he tallied eight points (4g/4a) and a team-high 118 penalty minutes in 52 games. The 6-foot-2, 210-pound right wing has appeared in 23 career NHL games (0g/0a), 13 with Vancouver from 2009-11 and 10 with Calgary in 2011-12. The Alma, Quebec native was Atlanta’s third choice (fourth round, 116th overall) in the 2003 Entry Draft.

          Guenin, 30, spent this past season with the Norfolk Admirals (AHL), tallying 24 points (4g/20a) in 66 games. The 6-foot-3, 207-pound defenseman has appeared in 32 career NHL games (2g/2a), 12 with Philadelphia from 2006-09, two with Pittsburgh in 2009-10, three with Columbus in 2010-11 and 15 with Anaheim in 2011-12. The Aliquippa, Pa., native was selected by the New York Rangers in the fourth round (127th overall) of the 2002 Entry Draft.

          Holden, 26, is a 6-foot-4, 207-pound defenseman from St. Albert, Alberta. He appeared in two games with the Blue Jackets this past season (0g/0a) and 73 contests with their AHL affiliate in Springfield, where he led all team defensemen with nine goals and 39 points. Holden was originally signed by Columbus as a free agent on March 28, 2008 and made his NHL debut with the Jackets in 2010-11. He has appeared in seven NHL games (0g/0a).

          Wyman, 27, spent this past season with Tampa Bay’s AHL affiliate, the Syracuse Crunch, but also played one game for the Lightning. The Edina, Minn., native tallied 38 points (13g/25a) in 76 games with Syracuse and added seven points (3g/4a) in 18 playoff contests for the Crunch. Selected by Montreal in the fourth round (100th overall) of the 2004 Entry Draft, the 6-foot-2, 209-pound right wing appeared in 40 games with the Lightning in 2011-12 (2g/9a) and has dressed in 44 career NHL contests.

          Van Der Gulik, 30, has spent the last three seasons with the Avalanche organization. He collected two assists and was +2 in nine games with Colorado this past year. Van Der Gulik also had 35 points (18g/17a) in 60 games for the AHL’s Lake Erie Monsters. The Abbotsford, British Columbia native has appeared in 40 games with the Avs over the last three seasons, collecting 11 points (2g/9a) with a combined +9 plus/minus rating. In 46 career NHL games with Colorado and Calgary, the left winger has 13 points (2g/11a).

          Smith, 20, led the Kamloops Blazers and finished tied for fourth in the Western Hockey League with 106 points (41g/65a) in 72 games this season. Smith, who was the only Kamloops player to appear in every regular season game, also led the club in goals and shared the team-lead in both assists and power-play goals (14). The Edmonton, Alberta native added 14 points (2g/12a) in 12 playoff contests. Smith was Colorado’s fifth choice (seventh round, 192nd overall) in the 2012 NHL Draft.
          Well.... looks like we're building for the future...

          Andre Benoit: that’s it for Avs free-agent signings
          By Adrian Dater
          The Denver Post
          Adrian Dater
          Comments (36)
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          Adam Foote, Andre Benoit, Andrew Ference, Joe Sakic, Patrick Roy

          I’ll have a column in the Sunday paper about it, but here’s a preview: while the Avs have had a lot of refreshing change this off-season, the team’s defense remains about as worrisome as ever.

          The Avs only added Andre Benoit from Ottawa, a former minor-league journeyman who may have some promise as a late-blooming offensive D-man, but otherwise someone who can be classified as a minor signing.

          Why didn’t the Avs go out and get one of the bigger fish on the free-agent market? Because there were only a couple they had any serious interest in – Andrew Ference and Rob Scuderi – but Ference wanted to go back home to Edmonton all along and Scuderi wanted to go back east with Pittsburgh.

          The rest of the market was mediocre at best, and the Avs feel they might have uncovered a nice player in Benoit. People who saw him in Ottawa say he was pretty decent for them in his 33 regular-season and five playoff games. He was a big scorer in the minors, and 10 points in 33 games isn’t all that bad. Heck, his three goals for the Sens would have led the Avs D in scoring last year.

          Still, as I’ll elaborate on in Sunday’s paper, the defense looks iffy still. It’ll be a big job for Patrick Roy, Adam Foote and the rest of the Avs coaching staff to make the existing personnel better. Maybe they can do it. But it won’t be easy.

          PS: Yes, I know the Avs also signed Nate Guenin today as a D-man. But that is strictly to add to the Lake Erie roster. He hasn’t played in the NHL since 2011-12.
          :lombardi:2019 Adopt-A-Bronco: Dr. Dre'Mont Jones


          • #6
            It wouldn't be a bad idea to give Brendan Smith a look