In an article today from Peter Baugh of The Athletic, he takes a look at some of the internal options available to the Colorado Avalanche in terms of their bottom-sixth depth. Baugh argues, that when the season begins, given a clean bill of health, there are 10 forwards that should already have their names penciled in for opening night of 2023-24.
The most oft-mentioned names that Baugh believes will fill out the depth of the Avalanche will be forwards Fredrik Olofsson, who was acquired in a mid-June trade with the Dallas Stars, and Ben Meyers, who was signed out of the University of Minnesota during the 2021-22 regular season. Given the overall youth of some of the players that Colorado could use to fill out their roster, both Olofsson and Meyers seem to be solid projections.
Unfortunately for the Avalanche, and albeit holding a very small sample size, neither player has played particularly well in their short careers. The team still has just over $2MM available in cap space when factoring in the LTIR placement of captain Gabriel Landeskog, and could seek other relatively cheap options still left in unrestricted free agency to fill out their roster. Players such as Paul Stastny, Phil Kessel, Josh Bailey, and Nick Ritchie are still without homes for the 2023-24 regular season, and would likely be seeking contracts that would fit in nicely with Colorado’s current cap situation.
- Adam Proteau of The Hockey News writes that he believes both D.J. Smith and Pierre Dorion are on the hot seat for the Ottawa Senators heading into the 2023-24 NHL season. Over the last several years, the Senators have made a serious attempt in transitioning out of their relatively short rebuild, looking to compete at the game’s highest level once again. With aggressive trading, wise approaches at multiple drafts, and bringing in marquee free agents such as Claude Giroux and Vladimir Tarasenko, the team has only inched toward the playoffs, rather than leaped. As the organization transitions to a new principal owner in September, the pressure might be increased on the head coach and General Manager this season.
- Speaking on ’Flames Talk’ with Pat Steinberg and Ryan Pike, Calgary Flames defenseman, MacKenzie Weegar spoke in great length on the importance of having a captain heading into next season, and that he would even be thrilled to accept the role if presented with the opportunity. Calgary has some other solid options for the role, such as Mikael Backlund and Elias Lindholm, but with being one of only three members in the organization signed beyond 2026-27, Weegar would be a solid choice to wear the much colder ’C’ on his jersey with the Flames.