Colorado Avalanche: Evaluating the Derick Brassard Acquisition

DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 28: Derick Brassard #19 of the Pittsburgh Penguins advances the puck against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center on November 28, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 28: Derick Brassard #19 of the Pittsburgh Penguins advances the puck against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center on November 28, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /

The Colorado Avlanche acquired Panthers forward Derick Brassard at the 2019 NHL Trade Deadline, thus keeping their trade streak alive.

Colorado Avalanche GM Joe Sakic has kept his streak alive. Every year since he took the reins in 2013, Sakic has made a trade on the deadline day. Even if it’s just an AHL-level trade, Sakic does something.

Today’s trade was more than an AHL-level, though. The Colorado Avalanche acquired a depth forward from the Florida Panthers.

*If the Colorado Avalanche sign Derick Brassard to an extension, they lose that pick. Brassard is in the final deal of a five-year contract worth $5 million annually.

Awkwardly, the Panthers are slated to play the Avs tonight in Denver. Apparently Brassard skated onto the ice for morning skate in Cats gear, but he was called off and told of the trade. He’s expected to make his debut tonight. (More on that in a moment.)

Apparently Team Dad Colin Wilson walked over to the Florida locker room to escort the newest Avs player:

Details on Derick Brassard

Position: Center
Height: 6’1″
Weight: 202 pounds
Age: 31
2018-19 Stats: 19 points (10 goals, 9 assists) in 50 games
All-Time Stats: 447 points (172 goals, 275 assists) in 766 games

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Brassard has been on a merry-go-round of teams recently. He started out his career with the Columbus Blue Jackets, who drafted him sixth-overall in 2006. After five-and-half seasons there, he was traded to the New York Rangers.

Brassard spent four seasons with the Rangers before getting traded to the Ottawa Senators. He helped the Senators make it all the way to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Conference Finals, where they were defeated by the Penguins.

Derick was then involved in a three-team trade that sent him from Ottawa to the Penguins via the Vegas Golden Knights. He never found chemistry in Pittsburgh, so they traded him to the Panthers on February 1, 2019 — just over three weeks ago. He played 10 games with the Cats.

And now he’s here in Colorado. I guess all that movement explains the road-weary expression on his face as Wilson escorts him down the hall. His most recent coach, Bob Boughner, calls him “Real coachable. Real likable. Very skilled.”

Brassard’s erstwhile teammate, former Avalanche Jamie McGinn, called Derick “a real good player, been a good player for a long time.”

Sports Forecaster describes him as a good skater with scoring instinct who can excel at both ends of the ice — but who lacks some consistency.

Reaction to Brassard Signing

I don’t get it. Blah-blah-blah veteran presence — we have that in Matt Calvert, Ian Cole and, yo, our captain of the blueline, Erik Johnson. I really don’t understand the point of acquiring a 31-year-old rental player when the Colorado Avalanche are supposed to be all-in on the youth movement.

Granted, Brassard came cheap — just a third-rounder. And, sure, he might be able to add a little offense. But does his .38 points per game really equate to a better chance of making the playoffs for the Avs?

And it’s not like the Avalanche locker room needs help. It’s one of the tightest rooms around. The players seem to genuinely like each other and enjoy playing for each other. The only hint of trouble is there seems to be a divide between the upper echelons and the youngsters/grinders. I don’t see how an aged grinder would help alleviate that.

I do see that the addition of Brassard takes a roster spot from a prospect. Andrew Agozzino and, more significantly, AJ Greer have already been sent back to the AHL Eagles.

Last game, which was so successful against the Predators, the fourth line was Sheldon Dries, Andrew Agozzino, and AJ Greer. With the latter two gone, presumably Brassard will plug in there. I wish it was going to be Greer there, but I guess it might be Gabriel Bourque. (I don’t believe Wilson has the all-clear yet.)

Next. Are the Avs Becoming Scary Good Again?. dark

Oh, well, we’ll see how the game goes tonight. Poor Brassard — I do feel for the man. It’s been a heck of a merry-go-round for him. Nonetheless, he’ll be skating in burgundy and blue for around 20 games, so welcome to the Colorado Avalanche, Derick.