Chambers: Avalanche has dumped “trial by fire” with forwards, aiming high with veteran depth over young prospects

Logan O’Connor played five games for the Avalanche last season in a time he could have been a senior and team captain at the University of Denver. The right-shot, slick-skating forwards opted to forgo his last year of NCAA eligibility to sign a max NHL free-agent entry-level contract with expectations of enjoying hockey’s maximal level.

At the time, it seemed to be a great choice.

However a year following significant veteran additions from the Avs — there appears to be playing time.

However he’s not whining. He understands success in now ’s NHL from having four strong lines, along with the as competent as the second stems. He understands the Boston Bruins along with St. Louis Blues each started their fourth lines at multiple matches of the Stanley Cup Final. He understands the Avs are excited on that type of depth.

“The ability, work ethic and excitement across the organization is in an all-time large,” O’Connor explained. “The Avs are moving at a management that is huge and there’s tons of potential and excitement. ”

Colorado signed former elite prospect winger Valeri Nichushkin, 24, past week, a month after adding veteran forward Nazem Kadri, 28, along with Andre Burakovsky, 24, through transactions and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, 34, along with Joonas Donskoi, 27, at free agency. The Avs additionally stepped free agent forward Colin Wilson, 29.

Unexpectedly, general manager Joe Sakic‘s childhood movement has stalled in regards to forward. The Avs general manager has selected to construct depth with specialists, that has slowed the NHL careers of O’Connor along with other young forward like him, including A.J. Greer, 22 and also Martin Kaut, 19.

Good for Sakic and his staff. They are no longer inclined to acquire or lose with young, unproven talent. They are presently building the sort of depth that may win a championship — from the NHL as well as the AHL with the Colorado Eagles.

With the Nichushkin registering, the Avs have 13 forward on guaranteed NHL contracts, also Tyson Jost, who has one year remaining on his entry-level deal. When restricted free-agent winger Mikko Rantanen becomes the team’s highest-paid participant in the forthcoming months, Colorado will have 15 forward they don’t need playing at the AHL.

Save for injury crisis, O’Connor, Greer, along with Kaut might not play at the NHL at 2019-20. The same is true for Shane Bowers and Nick Henry, both 20, who are also in their two-way, entry-level contracts which pay them less while at the minors.

“They must do what they believe will give them the maximum success,” O’Connor explained. “One of the things they thought they needed to perform was getting good, and the depth, seasoned players helps younger men. The group is still one of the teams in the league, I must believe. There is A veteran presence great. It can not hurt to have more knowledge and wisdom across the locker room to help those younger men. ”

O’Connor and the remainder of the Avs rookies report Sept. 6. The specialists ’ first day is Sept. 12. The regular-season opener is Oct. 3 and O’Connor has little to no possibility of playing in that match against Calgary in the Pepsi Center.

Related Articles

Colorado Avalanche have declared Rookie Faceoff Tournament roster

Stanley Cup winner Tyler Bozak shares summertime celebration, thoughts on new Avs forward Nazem Kadri, by DU professional camp

Avalanche giving former elite prospect Valeri Nichushkin yet a second NHL opportunity

Colorado Eagles proprietor Martin Lind is all about baseball

Peter Forsberg: “The Avs, next 10 Decades, it looks great”

But that’s not the way he’s considering it.

“My goal would be to enter training camp with the aim of making the group,” he explained. “I’m going to do everything in my ability to make that happen. I feel as I’ve had a very strong summer. You can force their hand in making some hard decisions Though it ’ s clearly a lineup to crack right now. I’m going to do whatever I could leading up to camp and if it happens, it happens, and should not I’m going to do my back down with the Eagles. ”

The Avs, Eagles along with the Utah Grizzlies of the ECHL every made their respective playoffs last spring.

Expect the identical because the Avs’ considerable gift will continue to filter down.

Buy Tickets for every event – Sports, Concerts, Festivals and more buy tickets