Colorado Avalanche: Realistic Expectations for Sven Andrighetto

GLENDALE, AZ - MARCH 13: Sven Andrighetto
GLENDALE, AZ - MARCH 13: Sven Andrighetto /

One of the most intriguing Colorado Avalanche players this season is Sven Andrighetto. What type of production can fans expect to see from him this year?

2016-17 Season

When the Colorado Avalanche acquired Sven Andrighetto from the Montreal Canadiens at last season’s trade deadline I was a bit confused. I did not understand why, of all the players that Colorado could trade, they decided to ship out Andreas Martinsen. He was only 26, and I thought Marty could be a valuable bottom six forward for years.

I also had no idea who Andrighetto was. I looked at the stats and was underwhelmed. Andrighetto had only put up 8 points in 27 games for Montreal, and there had to be a reason that the Habs, who were bound for the playoffs, were willing to give him up. Sure Andrighetto had put up great numbers in the QMJHL, but that offense doesn’t always translate to the NHL level.

Then, a funny thing happened. In the midst of having an historically bad season, where virtually nothing went according to plan, the Colorado Avalanche gave a young player a chance, and he thrived. Andrighetto put up 15 points in 19 games for the Avs. He also looked quite at home in a top line role, playing alongside Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen.

What the basic stats from Andrighetto’s stint with the Canadiens did not show was how he was used. Sven only recorded 11:29 minutes per game with Montreal last season, often with the fourth line. In Colorado, Andrighetto played 17:30 minutes per game, mainly on the top line, and on the power play. He was put in a position to succeed with the Avalanche, and did just that.

2017-18 Season

So what can we expect from Andrighetto in his first full season with the Colorado Avalanche? Will he pick up where he left off, playing on the first line all year? In his 19 games with Colorado, Andrighetto played at a 65 points per season pace. That would be a very welcome addition to a team trying to bounce back from last year’s debacle.

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Last year, Andrighetto had great chemistry with his primary linemates, Nathan Mackinnon and Mikko Rantanen. Of Andrighetto’s 15 points with the Avalanche, 11 came on goals where MacKinnon, Rantanen, or both also recorded a point. It is reasonable to believe, that if these three players are kept together, all three may take a step forward, together.

If one wants to be more pessimistic, in tune with last year’s motto of whatever can go wrong inevitably will, Andrighetto’s sample size with the Avs was only 19 games. With players coming and going this offseason, there is also no guarantee that Andrighetto’s place in the top line will last the entire preseason, let alone the entire regular season.

Beyond that, is the fact that Andrighetto has never played top line NHL minutes over the course of an entire season. He is listed at 5’10” and 188 lbs. At that size, how will playing over 15 minutes a night for 80 games wear on his body?


I believe that Andrighetto’s 2017-18 season will likely fall somewhere in between his production in Colorado and Montreal from last year. There will be times when he looks like the top line standout he was for Colorado last year. There will also likely be stretches where Andrighetto struggles a bit. It would be unfair to project 65 points from a player whose NHL career high is 23.

Next: Colorado Avalanche: Expect Big Team Turnaround in 2017-18

In any case, Sven Andrighetto is one of the players that I am most looking forward to seeing this year. I think his upside is tremendous, and this season is all about embracing the upside of players and enjoying their development.