It appears as if Jack Johnson has found a new home with the Colorado Avalanche.
Although no contract has officially been signed yet, that appears to be a formality and is likely to happen some time next week, multiple sources indicated to Colorado Hockey Now. For Johnson, the Avs would be his fifth NHL team in a career that has spanned 14 seasons.
The contract for Johnson, 34, is expected to be a one-year deal. The veteran of 950 NHL games signed a professional tryout contract with Colorado before training camp, and showed well in the first two preseason games he played for the Avs, logging more than 20 minutes per game. In his first game for the Avs last week in Vegas, he had a goal and assist.
Johnson has earned high praise from coach Jared Bednar so far. Johnson’s chances of making the opening-night roster were helped somewhat by the injury to regular defenseman Devon Toews, who the team said will miss some early-season games because of off-season shoulder surgery.
As it stands, Jack Johnson is likely to be a fifth or sixth D-man in the rotation to start the season. When Toews comes back, it’s anyone’s guess where Johnson will fit in after that. Johnson made $1.15 million with the New York Rangers in an injury-plagued 2020-21 season. His health is said to be much better than at any point last season, however.
Johnson’s agent is Pat Brisson, who also represents Nathan MacKinnon – along with a galaxy of other NHL stars including Sidney Crosby.
The Avs, according to PuckPedia, only have about $1.5 million in cap space at the moment.