The Colorado Avalanche acquired some old friends — and an old nemesis at the trade deadline. Will we be able to get used to a former foe?
The Colorado Avalanche were typically busy at the trade deadline. Interestingly, GM Joe Sakic seemed interested in getting the band back together. He went out and re-acquired both forward Carl Soderberg and defenseman Patrik Nemeth. Those were unexpected acquisitions, to say the least.
The elephant in the room prior to the deadline was the Avs’ need at the goalie position. Starter Philipp Grubauer was the hottest thing on ice… until he wasn’t. Fatigue was bound to set in with as many games as he’d been starting.
Colorado’s erstwhile backup, Pavel Francouz, has been sidelined for the remainder of the year after he underwent the same hip surgery he had in the offseason. I’m going to call it: That’s probably it for Francouz and the Avs.
Colorado seemingly acquired a backup goalie when they traded with the Buffalo Sabres for Jonas Johansson. Avs fans quickly loved calling him JoJo, but I don’t think a lot of us loved the idea of another untried youth being Grubauer’s primary backup.
Therefore, most people were just waiting for Colorado to trade for a goalie at the deadline. They did exactly that — they brought in Devan Dubnyk.
*Sigh. Dubs. Duuuuuubs, of Minnesota Wild fame. Yes, the (hated) Wild had already traded Dubnyk to the San Jose Sharks, but his stigma as a Minny goal tender was settled. He attacked several Avs players throughout the years, including our own captain.
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And now he wears burgundy and blue. Devan Dubnyk is an Avalanche player.
It’s going to take some getting used to.
Naturally, the trade happened six days ago, at the deadline. They sent defenseman Greg Pateryn and a 2021 fifth-round draft pick for Dubnyk, which is pretty cheap for an NHL goalie at the trade deadline. However, Dubnyk had been struggling this season. He had a .898 save percentage.
Nonetheless, Dubnyk is a seasoned goalie with some playoff experience.
Dub. Duuuub. I really don’t think I’lll be getting used to that any time soon.
That said, Dubnyk did already record a win for Colorado, in his debut. And, let’s be honest, now that Grubauer is COVID-positive, we really are lucky to have a seasoned goalie instead of a rookie being backed up by a rookie.
I don’t think the Colorado Avalanche and Devan Dubnyk are going to be longtime friends anyway. Dubnyk is 34 and in the last year of his contract. It’s unlikely they’ll sign an aging goalie when they have a handful of up-and-coming goal tenders in the system.
Colorado simply needed to shore up their goal for a run at the Stanley Cup. Hopefully, Duuub won’t even see any time in net during the playoffs.