The Colorado Avalanche will be watching their rookies closely at camp. Here are three questions we’re asking for rookie camp.
The Colorado Avalanche are in the house. And by that I mean many of the players are already taking part in the informal practices at South Suburban in Centennial.
Training camp doesn’t start for the veterans until Sept. 12 when they report for their medicals. However, the prospects have already got to be gearing up because their rookie camp starts September 6 — tomorrow.
In the last few years, rookie camp has taken on a new format. Instead of the prospects and rookies taking part of two days of training before the regular camp starts, they report a week earlier. They still have their two days of camp, but now their interspersed with the Rookie Faceoff, a tournament with prospects from other teams.
Read more about the format and the roster:
During this rookie camp/tournament, we’ll be watching some storylines play out. Specifically, we’ll want answers to the following questions.
1. Is Conor Timmins Healthy Enough to Play?
Defenseman Conor Timmins was the steal of the 2017 draft when he was miraculously still available at #31. However, his NHL career was set back by a concussion in major juniors playoffs.
Timmins missed all of last season trying to shake lagging symptoms. The team’s plan for him was to spend some time rehabbing in the AHL before he attempted to make his NHL debut.
Near the end of the season, the team shut him down completely. However, it was unclear if it was because of how late he was ready in the season or if he still wasn’t ready.
Well, he participated fully in the prospect development camp activities, including the 3-on-3 game. And he’s on the roster for all rookie camp/tournament activities. So, we’ll all be watching if he’s healthy enough to play.
And keeping our fingers crossed because I, for one, really want to see the kid succeed.
2. Can Bowen Byram Make the Team?
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The Colorado Avalanche had a bit of luck in this year’s draft, too. Well, not luck so much as GM Joe Sakic’s savvy in the Matt Duchene trade. Despite going to the second round of the playoffs, Colorado had the fourth-overall draft pick from Ottawa.
They used it to pick defenseman Bo Byram, a very highly-touted prospect who further impressed everyone at prospect development camp and in the Summer Showcase.
Byram has already signed his entry-level contract. So, he has the opportunity to make the team out of camp. The Avs, and we fans, will be watching to see how he looks for the upcoming season.
If he doesn’t make the team out of camp, or if the Avs play him fewer than 10 regular season games, he’ll return to his major juniors team.
3. Is Martin Kaut Ready for the NHL?
The Colorado Avalanche have one more highly-touted prospect, last summer’s #16-overall, forward Martin Kaut.
Kaut spent last year learning the North American game and getting back into condition after undergoing a heart procedure last summer.
Kaut recorded 26 points (12 goals, 14 assists) in 63 games with the Colorado Eagles in the regular season and two goals in four playoff games.
I personally don’t think he’ll be ready to make the transition yet. However, a lot depends on how well he plays in camp, starting with the rookie camp/tournament.
Well, Avs hockey is upon us. What questions would you like answered from rookie camp?