The Colorado Avalanche made a couple roster changes today, which will impact the lineup for Thursday’s game.
The Colorado Avalanche are just two games into the 2019-20 season, and they’re making roster changes already.
The two main roster changes are related to each other. Defenseman Ian Cole is set to return to play much sooner than expected, and so the team sent rookie Conor Timmins back to play with the Colorado Eagles.
My first reaction was that I hated this move. However, that tends to be my default reaction, so let’s look at the situation more deeply.
More from Mile High Sticking
- Could Colorado Avalanche move on from Pavel Francouz next offseason?
- 4 goalies to replace Pavel Francouz if he has to miss time
- Colorado Avalanche make sneaky signing with Tatar
- Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog could return in 2023-24 playoffs
- Colorado Avalanche rookie face-off tournament roster
Timmins made the team out of training camp. He was just too strong in camp and in the preseason to justify sending him down to the Eagles. Now, that was surprising considering he’d missed an entire year of competitive hockey, but he’s a talented kid who’s clearly worked hard to get his skills up to snuff.
That said, Timmins didn’t have the strongest of showings in the two regular season games for which he suited up. He played under 10 minutes in his first game and just over in his second. In the Flames game, he had 10 positive and 11 negative Corsi events. He improved to 14 and 8 against the Wild.
However, he simply wasn’t being used in a lot of important situations. So, the general consensus from the preseason, that he’d need some conditioning in the AHL, seems to be holding out. He should see top-line minutes with the Eagles, and that will be good for his development.
Now, onto Ian Cole. I’m not the biggest of fans of his game. It has its positives, but I don’t love the decisions he makes away from the puck a lot of the time.
With the puck, though, it’s hard to argue he’s effective. Last season he recorded a 50.5% CorsiFor, which isn’t bad when you consider he saw a lot of penalty kill time.
And that’s where he might be most useful. The Colorado Avalanche have allowed three power play goals against them in just the two games they’ve played. Granted, both games had a ridiculous amount of penalties.
But… they’re at 62.5% in penalty killing, which is not good. So, yes, Cole’s return could help that.
Jared Bednar has remarked that it’s possible that Cole might play within the next week, but it’s unlikely he’ll play against Boston on Thursday. He added, “We will just see how the next few days go” concerning when Cole might return.
Bednar also said that the team would likely recall another defenseman from the Eagles. This player would perhaps replace Timmins on the bottom pairing with Ryan Graves, though Mark Barberio is still on the NHL roster. The likely call-ups are Calle Rosen or Kevin Connauton. I’m going to bet on the former because he showed well in camp and he’s waivers exempt.
Five players took maintenance days today at least partially because of getting banged up in the last two games. Indeed, most of the middle six was out, so today’s practice lines meant nothing. Both Andre Burakovsky and Joonas Donskoi sat out, so there’s no telling if they’re going to swap places again.
Jared Bednar remarked after the Wild game, though, that he thought the second line “looked pretty good” and that he liked how all the lines looked together. The second line consisted of Nazem Kadri centering Tyson Jost and Donskoi, while Burakovsky was on the third line with JT Compher and Matt Nieto.
The Colorado Avalanche will not hold practice tomorrow because they’re “banged up.” However, they’re scheduled to practice on Wednesday before hosting the Bruins on Thursday.