The Colorado Avalanche have bought out the last year of defenseman Francois Beauchemin’s contract, thus freeing up a roster and protection list spot.
The Colorado Avalanche front offices have made a lot of Avs fans happy this morning. They announced that they’ve bought out defenseman Francois Beauchemin’s contract.
I’m a little more philosophical about the situation. It’s not that I think Beachemin’s play warrants another year at $4.5 million, which is what he had left on his contract. He was truly dreadful last season, recording a -19 turnover ratio. He was also responsible for too many goals against the Avs than I care to tally.
Beauchemin is 37 years old now. He’s a restricted free agent. His buyout coupled with his age and last season’s performance almost certainly means he’ll be retiring. By all accounts, Beauchemin is a good person — I have enough heart to feel for the guy a little.
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In any case, he’ll have 3 million reasons to cheer up. The Avalanche have to pay him $3 million paid over two years. He could probably take the family on a very nice extended vacation next Christmas with a small chunk of that money.
Unfortunately, the Avalanche don’t get any cap relief from the buyout. Because Beauchemin’s was a 35+ contract, Colorado has to absorb the entire salary in cap estimating.
One of the options the team had was to ask Francois Beauchemin to waive his No Move Clause, which would have allowed the team to put him on waivers and eventually expose him in the Expansion Draft. However, according to TSN, who spoke with Beauchemin’s agent Bob Suave (great agent name, by the way), Colorado never asked Beauchemin to waive that clause. He was informed of the buyout Wednesday night.
Avs insider Adrian Dater thinks the buyout is a pure hockey decision:
I agree. I saw a lot of leadership in Beauchemin. He also seems like a perfectly nice man. And as I’ve noted before, GM Joe Sakic is absolutely talking about getting younger and faster. Beauchemin was neither.
What’s more, buying out Beauchemin frees up not just a roster spot, but a spot on the protected list for the upcoming Expansion Draft. Colorado is sure to go with the 8 skater option, and here’s who I think they protect with Beauchemin out:
- Matt Duchene
- Gabriel Landeskog
- Nathan MacKinnon
- Sven Andrighetto
- Matt Nieto
- Erik Johnson
- Tyson Barrie
- Nikita Zadorov
At least the absolute worst case scenario can’t come to pass:
Francois Beauchemin played 163 games during two seasons with the Colorado Avalanche. He scored 52 points (13 goals, 39 assists). Last training camp Jared Bednar named Beauchemin an alternate captain.
The Avalanche acquired Beauchemin in free agency in 2015, ostensibly as a defensive partner for Erik Johnson. Prior to that he provided a gritty, offensive-minded presence for the Anaheim Ducks. At the time of Beauchemin’s acquisition, that was the style of play Colorado wanted.