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Captain’s Skate: Colton Arrives, Big Guns Trickling In



Ross Colton Avalanche nhl trade

It feels a little strange to call these Captain’s Skates, when we all know the Captain of the Colorado Avalanche will (unfortunately) not be present on the ice for any of them. Nevertheless, we truck on.

And today, there were quite a few arrivals from summer vacation, including Ross Colton, arguably the biggest piece the Avalanche acquired during the NHL offseason.

Because there were so many skaters on the ice, we actually were witness to some scrimmaging. It came in the form of 4-on-4, but it’s better than watching drills.

Colton Arrives

Still no sign of Miles Wood, but Ross Colton, who the Avalanche acquired from Tampa Bay this summer, was on the ice this morning. While most of the NHL players got off after all the scrimmaging was done, which was about an hour into the session, Colton stuck around for an extra 30 minutes or so, working on his shot, and getting acclimated to the altitude.

Colton was wearing the #20 on his helmet, and I’ll admit, I’m still a little bummed he’s not carrying on with #79. That’s a unique number, as you won’t find many around the league wearing it.

Big Guns Show Up

Not everyone is in town, but the calvary is starting to arrive. Mikko Rantanen, Devon Toews, and Jack Johnson were all present for the first time, and their presence allowed for some scrimmaging.

And let me tell you, Rantanen is just on another level compared to everyone else out there. He probably just hopped off a plane from Finland, and he still made it look far too easy. At one point, he tipped a pass to himself with one hand in the neutral zone, then carried it down to the goal line, banking a puck into the net off Alexandar Georgiev’s helmet from an impossible angle.

He’s a special talent, and never take guys like that for granted.

A Sign Of Things To Come?

None of this matters in the grand scheme of things, but it was just interesting that for every single drill, the trio of Artturi Lehkonen, Ryan Johansen, and Rantanen were put together. That can’t be a coincidence, right?

In July, I said that would be my preference as a line, particularly because it puts Nichushkin with the MacKinnon/Drouin duo, giving that line a bit more size. Those two trios make a lot of sense on paper, but we’ll see if they gel when camp starts, assuming they are together.

Again, things will change, and certainly nothing is set in stone right now, but just found it noteworthy. Here’s a video of the trio working together.

Other Notes

  • Josh Manson did not skate. None of these skaters are mandatory, but just wanted to mention it after yesterday.
  • Erik Johnson is still here, skating with his old teammates in his Buffalo gear.
  • A lot of AHL skaters/prospects are starting to show up, and I can’t pick them out from the crowd at this point.

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