The Colorado Avalanche signed Vladislav Kamenev to a one-year contract last month. Healthy again after losing much of last season to a shoulder injury, this coming season would seem to be the perfect opportunity for the 24-year-old center to finally make a mark in the NHL. With just a one-year, “show me” type of deal, this coming season is huge for a player whose career development has been slowed by injury and other factors.
But the question is: where is he going to play? Based on current projections of the Avalanche lineup, it would seem there is no room at the inn for Kamenev. He is not alone in this predicament. Other top Avs prospects, including Martin Kaut, A.J. Greer, Conor Timmins, Shane Bowers and Nicolas Meloche, seem to be facing another season in which there is little to no opportunity to play with the Avs – barring injury, trades or poor play by those in front of them on the depth charts. Some of those in front of them are veterans whom the Avs chose to sign to new contracts instead of going with their own, younger crop of talent.