Francois Beauchemin: Get to Know the Avs New D-Man


The Colorado Avalanche acquired Francois Beauchemin during the Free Agency Frenzy. The team signed the defenseman to a three-year deal worth $13,500, carrying an annual cap hit of $4.5 million.

A lot has been made of Francois Beauchemin’s age — he’s 35 years old and has that three-year contract. However, as head coach Patrick Roy has pointed out, the Colorado Avalanche have some great defensive prospects coming up, so it’s not like Beauchemin will be expected to be on the top pairing forever.

For this season, however, Beauchemin is slated to be #1 defenseman Erik Johnson’s partner, according to GM Joe Sakic. So, let’s see what Colorado Avalanche fans can expect to see from Beauchie. (If that’s not already his nickname, it should be.)

Francois Beauchemin Statistics

Former team: Anaheim Ducks
Shoots: Left
Height: 6’1″
Weight: 208pounds
Age: 35

More from Avalanche News

Francois Beauchemin is coming off of a career year in which he posted 11 goals in 64 games — that’s just one fewer than Avalanche offensive defenseman Tyson Barrie scored in 82. Beauchemin also earned 12 assists for a total of 23 points. He’s a positive force on the ice, earning a +17 rating. (Barrie led the Avs with a +5)

Beauchemin knows his defense, too. He was second on the Anaheim Ducks in both blocked shots (107) and hits (105). One category he led the Ducks on is ice time. He averaged 22:44 in the regular season and an impressive 25:24 in the playoffs.

Fun fact: In the 2015 playoffs run, Beauchemin became the franchise leader in post-season assists (29) and points (39) by a defenseman, passing four-time Stanley Cup champion Scott Niedermayer to take that title.

Francois Beauchemin Playing Style

Francois Beauchemin doesn’t just hit a lot, he hits hard — get ready to say “Beauchie-Smash!” He’ll also drop the gloves when necessary, having engaged in 14 scraps during his career. (Granted, Cody McLeod hits more than that in one season, but he has a different role.)

Beauchemin knows how to move the puck, too. Though last season was his first-ever for recording 10+ goals in a season, he’s recorded 60 in his career in the regular season and 10 in the playoffs.

Let’s see some video of Beauchemin.

Here’s a tough, six-hole goal Beauchemin scored on Edmonton Oilers’ goalie Ben Scrivens:

Beauchemin can also score on Minnesota Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk, which is useful for the Avalanche:

Francois Beauchemin is also very capable of hitting Wild players. Watch him lay Wild forward Zach Parise out flat in open ice:

I highly approve, by the way.

Francois Beauchemin’s Role with the Avalanche

Both Avalanche GM Joe Sakic and head coach Patrick Roy were very clear in what role they saw Francois Beachemin taking with the team.

First of all, Sakic stated outright that they signed Beauchemin as a defensive partner for the team’s #1 defenseman, Erik Johnson. Johnson plays the big minutes (24:40 average) against the big lines. Sakic said of Beauchemin’s fitness to partner Johnson:

"“We didn’t want somebody we were hoping could fill that role. With Francois Beauchemin, he did it for the best team in the Western Conference last year.”"

The Anaheim Ducks won the Western Conference last season.

Coach Roy concurred with that prospective pairing. He also praised the veteran leadership Beauchemin would be bringing to the Avalanche defensive corps.

The man most affected, Johnson, also applauded the potential partnership via Twitter:

I’ve never seen him remark on signings before, so maybe this partnership can work out well.

What do you think of Francois Beauchemin’s joining the Colorado Avalanche blueline?

Next: Get to Know Carl Soderberg

More from Mile High Sticking