We continue our look back at the 2013-2014 Colorado Avalanche today by highlighting the first NHL goal by defenseman Nick Holden.
When the Colorado Avalanche signed Nick Holden as a free agent in the offseason, nobody thought much of it. Holden, undrafted in 2008, signed with the Columbus Blue Jackets and spent most of his career playing in their minor league system. He played seven NHL games with the Blue Jackets. He was signed mainly as a depth defenseman for the Avs, but after an impressive training camp, he made the roster. Holden was a healthy scratch for the first 11 games of the season, but finally made his Avs debut on November 1st against the Dallas Stars. He played five minutes in that game and figured to be a healthy scratch once again. And he was for a bit, but in his third game with the Avs, Holden scored his first NHL goal against the Washington Capitals. As Gabriel Landeskog worked behind the net, Holden snuck in from the point, received the pass, and blasted a shot past Braden Holtby. The goal broke a 1-1 tied and turned out to the be the game-winner for the Avalanche.
Holden was still in and out of the lineup for the first part of the season, but by 2014, he was a mainstay on the Avalanche defense, playing in all situations. He finished the year with 10 goals and 15 assists, becoming one of the Avs top four defenseman in the playoffs. Not bad for a guy who was an afterthought when he signed with the club.