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Avalanche Free Agency

Burakovsky signs, while other rumors swirl



Andre Burakovsky is back in the fold with the Avs, a two-year deal with a $4.9 million cap hit.

That’s probably a bit higher than the Avs wanted to spend for him, but the problem is Burakovsky had arbitration rights, and a young guy who scored 20 goals, like he did, probably would have gotten a nice deal from an arbitrator, based on comparable. I mean, Josh Anderson just got a deal worth $5.5 million a year from Montreal – for seven years. It’s all about “well, but that other guy got so and so, and my numbers are as good as his” in contract negotiations.

Burakovsky’s signing brings the Avs’ cap room down to $17.4 million, according to CapFriendly. Also, according to the fine site, there are eight other players that still need to be signed to get to 23 players on the roster. That’s a bit deceptive, though, because it’s not taking guys into account such as Logan O’Connor or Conor Timmins or Bo Byram – guys who might have a very good shot at making the roster by opening night of next season.

Anyway, it’s nice to have Burky back (he was never going anywhere, but just sayin’) and now Joe Sakic turns his attention to other free agents – those of his own (restricted) and maybe a couple from other teams.

So…..that brings me to Tyson Barrie. Darren Dreger, the well-respected TSN reporter, tweeted that the Avs are in the mix to sign him as an unrestricted free agent. I’ve talked with Barrie’s agent, Pat Morris, and he wouldn’t shed any light on the situation.

I gotta say, as much as we all love TB4, I don’t see how it fits, hockey-wise, bringing him back. Barrie is a guy who is going to want to get a lot of power play time, but how is that going to happen on a team with Cale Makar and Sam Girard already?

But, hey, this is a crazy business, so nothing surprises me. Barrie is a right-shot D and knows the system, as they say, so we’ll see.

UPDATE: Barrie signed with the Oilers.

As for Taylor Hall…I’m still getting ghosted by his agent and Joe Sakic isn’t going to reveal his cards to me or anyone else, so….we wait.

Boston’s signing of Craig Smith to a deal with a $3.3 million cap hit lessens some room to sign a Taylor Hall, but they’ve still got $12.2 million left and only two of their own RFAs to sign. They could still fit Hall in on a short-term, budget-conscious deal it would seem.

Nashville can throw more money and term at Hall. They’ve got $13 million in cap space, but only nine “regular” forwards signed for next season.

Bottom line: things are fluid, talks are happening and nobody really knows what will happen ’til it happens.

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