Andreas Martinsen: Meet the Norwegian Giant


Andreas Martinsen is not the first European skater the Colorado Avalanche has signed in recent history. In the off-season of 2014, the club signed Dennis Everberg and Borna Rendulic out of Sweden and Finland, respectively. Besides their continent of origin, the three have one thing in common: size.

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All three stand at least 6-foot-3, with Everberg being the tallest at 6-foot-4. However, Martinsen is the heaviest, as he is listed at 220 pounds. His large frame especially stood out at the Avalanche’s prospect development camp, where he looked like a giant among kids.

The million dollar question is: what does he really bring to the Avalanche? Whatever the answer may be, he is on a one-year entry-level contract (the longest 24-year-old Euro imports are allowed to sign for). Therefore, the Avs signed a promising player to a cheap, risk-free contract.

Let’s take a look at who he is.

Andreas Martinsen scouting report

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As mentioned above, Andreas Martinsen is a big-bodied skater, who can play all three forward positions. He likes to play a physical game and drop the gloves every once in a while. However, that is not everything his game stands for, which is why he got so interesting for the Avalanche.

In the 2014-15 season, Martinsen spent a lot of time on the Dusseldorfer EG’s top line, alongside fellow Norwegian Ken Andre Olimb. The duo’s production helped Dusseldorf reach the semi-finals of the playoffs, after finishing dead last the prior two seasons.

Martinsen is a very good skater for his size. Furthermore, he has a lot of skill, along with good passing and shooting ability. At 6-foot-3, 220 pounds, Martinsen likes to get physical in the offensive zone, crash the net and screen the goalie.

Considering the fact that European hockey is generally much less physical than the NHL and AHL, Martinsen hits and fights a lot. In the past season, however, the team seemed to have been told not to fight, as there was hardly any of that to be seen in Dusseldorf. Nevertheless, here’s an example of what Martinsen can do (skip to 1:35): click.

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Overall, Andreas Martinsen is exactly what Joe Sakic and Patrick Roy have been looking for. He is a big and physical, yet skillful player — the perfect fit for a skilled bottom six, if he reaches NHL level. The problem is, as of right now, it does not look like he has quite that much potential.

In his first two seasons with Dusseldorf, Martinsen only recorded 22 and 17 points, respectively, before scoring 41 in 50 games in the 2014-15 season. As mentioned above, the team was at the bottom of the standings in those first two seasons, while Martinsen didn’t play a big role yet. It still remains to be seen how much he can really produce in a good league.

To be fair, Dennis Everberg was signed out of Sweden’s second tier league and made himself a name in the world’s best hockey league rather quickly. So, even if Andreas Martinsen doesn’t seem like a player with NHL talent right now, he may prove us all wrong once the season starts.

After starting out as one of the star players on his team, Martinsen regressed heavily once NHL rumors emerged. Even though his team got close to making the league finals in a surprisingly good season, he seemed to be the one player that didn’t want to make the finals. In other words, it looked like he didn’t even try. We’ll see where that goes.

Expectations for Andreas Martinsen

After my scouting report, it is clear that the expectations shouldn’t be too high for now. Andreas Martinsen has all the tools to succeed, though.

With the Avalanche’s current depth of forward prospects, it is unlikely that Martinsen would be the one who makes the NHL out of camp. He will likely start the season with the San Antonio Rampage and spend a large amount of time there.

In San Antonio, however, Martinsen could fill a top six role, like he did back in Germany. If he keeps on improving, he could be a good, physical scoring forward for the Rampage. That could then lead him to an audition in Colorado.

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Next: What to Expect from Andreas Martinsen

Next: San Antonio Rampage 2015-16 Roster Outlook

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