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It’s moving day in Colorado.
On the same day the Avalanche are set to introduce their 2019 draft class to the media at Pepsi Center, they started the day by trading Carl Soderberg to the Arizona Coyotes. Now, facing the qualifying deadline offer, the Avalanche has let five other players go into unrestricted free agency.
Sven Andrighetto, Spencer Martin, Mason Geertsen, Julien Nantel, and Sergei Boikov (EDIT: Boikov was later qualified) were all not tendered QOs today, making them free to sign with any club in the league.
Andrighetto is the biggest name of the bunch, having appeared in 133 games with the Avs over the past three seasons. In that time, Andrighetto scored 55 points (20g, 35a).
Andrighetto was acquired at the trade deadline in 2017 in exchange for Andreas Martinsen and immediately caught fire on a team desperate for any kind of offensive skill. He finished the season on a line with Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen, scoring 16 points (5g, 11a) in 19 games, good enough to earn a two-year deal from the Avs that summer.
The next two seasons didn’t quite pan out the way Andrighetto or the Avs hoped as he slowly worked his way down the lineup in each season. While he could provide occasional offensive punch in the lineup, his contributions were just too unreliable for the coaching staff to trust him with any kind of a prominent role.
He was a healthy scratch late in the season and during the playoffs, only slotting in when injuries struck. It was even more telling when one game the coaching staff decided to scratch a healthy Andrighetto in favor of just playing 11 forwards.
The other four players who were non-tendered today combined for just three NHL appearances, all by Martin. He and Geertsen were members of what was once a much ballyhooed 2013 draft class. Now that the dust has settled, the only NHL regulars from the class are Nathan MacKinnon and Will Butcher, who infamously walked on the Avs after four years at the University of Denver and signed with New Jersey in free agency.
The players the Avs DID send QOs to are:
Alexander Kerfoot, Vladislav Kamenev, J.T. Compher, Mikko Rantanen, Ryan Graves, Nikita Zadorov, A.J. Greer, Dominic Toninato, Sheldon Dries, and Anton Lindholm
Regular season schedule released
Along with everything else going on today, the NHL released the 2019-20 regular season schedule earlier this morning.
The Avalanche open the season at home on October against the Calgary Flames, who they eliminated from the playoffs last year. They begin and end the season on four-game homestands.
Other notable dates include a New Year’s Eve tilt at home against the Winnipeg Jets and the Stadium Series outdoor game against the Los Angeles Kings at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs on February 15.
Of note, the Avs have two four-game homestands and three five-game homestands. They have a season-high six-game road trip in October.
Courtesy of the Avalanche twitter account, here’s the Avs’ full schedule: