Sunday, June 24, 2018

Avs Lock Up Grubauer

The only big move out of the first day of the entry draft saw the Colorado Avalanche make a move to acquire a new goalie and a buyout candidate (to help make it up to the salary cap floor).  That goalie, 26-year old German Philipp Grubauer, was locked in by the Avalanche on Saturday afternoon, signing a 3-year, $10 million deal and he'll now be in the conversation for a top job at the start of camp.

Grubauer had a very good 2018 season, where he played a key role for the Washington Capitals down the stretch, aiding the team when Braden Holtby was going through a bit of a lull, finishing with 15 wins and 37 points in 35 appearances.  Grubauer was also given the start in the first two games of the opening round of the playoffs against Columbus, dropping them both, but lighting the fire for Holtby, which eventually turned into a Stanley Cup championship.

The Avalanche will now have a top goalie tandem, which includes the oft-injured Semyon Varlamov, so having a very good number two goalie will be paramount for this team to remain relevant in the regular season and possibly into the playoffs.

Even with the eventual buyout of Brooks Orpik on the books, adding Grubauer's $3.333 million cap hit, I still have their projected cap hit below the floor, but not by much. Nail Yakupov did enough to warrant a new deal and we'll probably see another restricted free agent or two re-sign, so there's no reason to worry.  The Avalanche definitely have some flexibility this summer, maybe they can sway a key unrestricted free agent their way as well.

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