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Avalanche Re-Sign Veteran Center For One More Season



Avalanche Chris Wagner

Chris MacFarland just had a dynamite trade deadline, reshaping his Colorado Avalanche in hopes of a long playoff run. It’s never too early to start thinking about next season, though.

On Wednesday, the Avalanche announced that they had re-signed veteran center Chris Wagner to a one-year contract for the 2024-25 season. Terms of the contract aren’t immediately available through CapFriendly, but once they do become available, I will make sure to update. I can’t imagine it’s for much more than league minimum, but the real question will be whether or not it’s a one-way deal.

Wagner signed with the Avalanche over the summer, but immediately suffered a torn achilles while training, which knocked him out until Jan. 13. He explained how the injury occurred when he was called-up in February.

“I was doing extra sprint work back home before I was going out to skate,” Wagner said, recalling how the injury occurred. “Doing skater hops…hop, hop, land. I don’t know if you saw the guy on the 49ers do it on the sideline, it was the exact same movement.”

Wagner has played in 10 games this season in the NHL for Colorado, and has picked up a goal and an assist. His only goal just came the other night, as he tipped home a Sean Walker shot. That’s not why he’s up in the NHL, though. He’s here to provide a physical, steady presence for the fourth line, and he’s done exactly that when in the lineup. It makes sense to lock him up for next season. Even if he doesn’t make the NHL squad out of camp, he can be a very useful player in the AHL for the Colorado Eagles.

In 17 games with the Eagles this season, he has eight points.

Wagner may draw back into the lineup on Thursday night against the Wild, depending on the health of Yakov Trenin. That’s the value of having a guy like Wagner in your organization.

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I think they’ve liked what they’ve seen when he’s been called on. And I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s in their loose plans for a 4th line role next season.

McFarland has indicated in interviews that the Avs are capped out & are going to be in a mini cap hell this off – season. Especially with the Landy $ coming back on the books.

Drouin, Trenin & Walker aren’t coming back. And they’ve got to figure out what a Mittelstadt deal will look like. So the Avs are going to put together a 4th line piece meal.

Bobby brown

With landeskog coming back next season
Drouin will be gone. Mittlestadt should take bridge deal to help with cap space. Trenin will be gone. Cogs and parise retire

Kovalenko will be a regular. Wagner will be 4th line center. Duhaime and kirivanta resign

Malinski will be full time
They should resign Caleb Jones to be 6th dmen. They should aho as 7th dmen.

If Manson or girard gets traded they could resign trenin and drouin

Nuke mack moose
Lekhonen mittlestadt landy
Kovalenko colton duhaime
Wood Wagner LOC

Toews makar
Girard Manson
Jones Malinski


Glendon Gulliver

That is a very realistic line up if Landeskog returns. It is also the minimum of 20 skaters. Based on what players are signed for next year and assuming Mittelstadt’s salary is the same and Duhaime and Jones re-sign for their current salary, that lineup costs $84 million. That leaves about $3.7 million to give Mittelstadt a raise and then carry an extra forward and d-man. Foudy’s salary next year is $847.5K, if he is the 13th forward.

Glendon Gulliver

A possible different lineup would be to re-sign Trenin, instead of Duhaime. If he re-signs at his current $1.7 million, that would leave $3.1 million. You could have Foudy be on the 3rd line and have Trenin be 4C and Wagner as the 13th forward. That would leave around $2.2 million for Mittelstadt and a 7th d-man.

Joshua Canfield

I think the “Mayor of Wapole” (Wagner’s nickname according to Hockey Ref) is a solid depth signing. He’s been noticeable in his last few games, solid call-up.

Next season’s salary cap will basically depend on what happens with Landy. I really hope he returns but as time moves forward, I grow more and more skeptical.

Richard Trujillo

This is called the “we don’t think Landeskog will be back next year but his contract will still be on the books so we can’t sign his replacement so we sign a 1 year deal” deal.

Philip Bublitz

I love all the optimism and excitement about the new acquisitions, but they still lack a legitimate 2c and seem no different than when they had Compher as a 2C. Middlestadt has yet to prove he can drive a line like Kadri, and w/o Landy, the Avs still lack a “heart & soul” player, and sh** disturber who can drag the team into a game or fight. To me they still seem one dimensional, but hopefully, Nichushkin will change all that.

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