Colorado Avalanche reduces roster as pre-season set to begin


The Colorado Avalanche made the first of many cuts this afternoon as they released 20 players from their main roster today. None of the cuts come as a surprise and more will come this weekend as the Avs' minor league affiliate, the San Antonio Rampage, sets to open their own training camp.

The cuts, sorted by where the players were sent:

To San Antonio:

LW  Troy Bourke
LW  Trevor Cheek
D Cody Corbett
D Justin Hamonic
C Samuel Henley
D Hubert Labrie
D Daniel Maggio
G Spencer Martin
C Garrett Meurs
C Reid Petryk
LW Michael Schumacher

To Juniors:

C JC Beaudin
D Sergei Boikov
D Raphael Maheux
RW Nick Magyar
D Nicolas Meloche
C Gustav Olhaver
C/LW Julien Nantel
LW Alexis Pepin

To Europe:

G Maximilian Pajpach

With 44 players remaining on the roster, the Avalanche still face 21 more cuts. With a number of fierce roster competitions set to play out through the pre-season, the next several weeks should be fascinating for Avalanche fans as they watch the opening night roster slowly begin to take shape.

With the pre-season opening tomorrow night at home versus the Anaheim Ducks, the Avalanche are still faced with figuring out who the backup goaltender will be not only in the NHL but the AHL as well as Calvin Pickard and Reto Berra battle it out for the NHL spot while Roman Will is vying for the backup job in San Antonio with Martin. With Martin being sent down already, that's one competition that could already be over.

Other players with the most realistic shot at cracking the NHL lineup who are caught in a battle are first round draft pick Mikko Rantanen, holdovers Dennis Everberg and Borna Rendulic, newcomers Andreas Martinsen and Brandon Gormley, and PTO player Jack Skille, among many others. The battles will be interesting to watch unfold as the Avalanche have a deeper roster of quality players than ever before and could face the possibility of upsetting the established hierarchy in favor of fresh blood.

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