Welcome to Day 3 of “Please, for the love of God, make your decision Nazem Kadri.” More on him in a minute. First, though, a good reporter from Vancouver who helps cover the Canucks, Rick Dhaliwal, tweeted not long ago that veteran left-shot Canucks defenseman Brad Hunt has agreed to a two-year, two-way deal with the Colorado Avalanche.
Brad Hunt will turn 34 next month, and played 50 games for Vancouver last season, with three goals and 17 points and a -3. The fact that, as Dhaliwal said, the new contract is a two-way deal is interesting. Is he the new Jack Johnson and/or Ryan Murray? Is he part of the solution to replace Sam Girard if he gets dealt?
Maybe. I still think, of the two veteran guys (Johnson and Murray) that JJ is the one most likely to re-sign with the Avalanche. One thing too: the Colorado Eagles just lost a bunch of their better players, including offensive D-man Jordan Gross (along with other guys such as Kiefer Sherwood – to Nashville – and Dylan Sikura – to Chicago).
Brad Hunt has been kind of a spare-part defenseman most of his NHL career, though he also played 59 games for the Wild in 2019-20. So, it’ll be interesting what kind of plan the Avalanche has for him. I would assume his deal will be one of those 750/450k deals that are common on two-way contracts for guys with his kind of experience. Hey, 450k a year, even if you’re playing in the minors, is still some pretty good cheddar.
A lot of Avalanche plans, no doubt, hinge on the situation with Nazem Kadri. Unfortunately, I don’t have anything hot and poppingly new to report on him, from what I wrote yesterday morning. I think – think – this is still a good thing for Avalanche fans who want him back.
I think the same situation prevails: Kadri and the Avalanche agree that they want to keep the relationship going, but need to clear some cap space to afford him and that’s what’s holding things up. I hope I didn’t just DaterJinx that, where we get some “Kadri bolts dithering Avs for….?” story. But all I can do is report what I believe is the best version of the truth I can dig up. I think, the longer this does go, the more it lends credence to the belief that Kadri will come back. After all, if Kadri has some offer from another he can’t refuse, wouldn’t he have taken it by now? A report in Calgary surfaced that the Flames very much made a play for Kadri, but that they were told unless there’s a “change of heart” he’s not going to be a Flame. Would that “heart” be set on Colorado? I think so, yes.
But this is a strange business, and I don’t discount anything weird happening. We just have to…long sigh…keep waiting.