The old saying says “when it rains, it pours.” News from the NHL is pouring in quickly, and I’m starting to get really excited about the NHL season. Here’s everything to do with the Avalanche that mattered to me today (to paraphrase Philip Defranco.)
-Chuck Kobasew and Jamie McGinn both joined practice this morning, bringing the player total up to 19. Varlamov just got in late last night, so he was resting this morning, but is expected to be there tomorrow. If you’re really jonesin’ for some Varly, here is a picture of him with his two dogs:
-Here‘s a good article on Ryan O’Reilly’s value. Apparently, O’Reilly’s agent told Denver Post reporter Mike Chambers that the two sides are “discussing things.” Let’s just hope that the sides can come to an agreement quickly.
-Everyone is saying that the Avalanche are going to open up their season with a home and home against the Minnesota Wild on the 19th and 21st. For now this is just a rumor. If this is indeed the case, I think it’s a good opportunity to start the season off right. The Avs have more returning players and are going to have more chemistry than the Wild on opening night, and they need to take advantage of that fact.
-There are going to be 48 games played this season, which breaks down into: three games against conference opponents, 5 games against two divisional rivals, and 4 games against the other two divisional rivals. I think I speak for everyone in the Avs fanbase when I pray to the hockey gods that the divisional opponents the Avs play only four times are the Flames and the Canucks, given recent history.
-It’s being said that there will be 26 players at the Avalanche camp. There are 21 players on the Avs roster who are not in Erie or named Ryan O’Reilly, which leaves five spots at camp. I’m going to guess that Mark Olver, Michael Sgarbossa, Andrew Agozzino, Brad Malone, and Tyson Barrie get the call, but I could be wrong.
-Chuck Kobasew will be changing his number from 17 to 12 (remember, Kevin Porter is now gone, and thus #12 was available.)
-According to Mike Chambers (Denver Post), Parenteau will wear 15, Zanon 4, and Mitchell 7.
-Coach Joe Sacco will address the media tomorrow morning.
-The Owners board ratified the CBA yesterday morning, which means all that’s left is for the players to ratify it on Saturday, and the lockout will officially be over!