The Colorado Avalanche and right winger Valeri Nichushkin have agreed to a contract, preventing him from hitting free agency.
With just five days to spare, the Colorado Avalanche and right winger Valeri Nichushkin will continue their relationship. The two sides are nearing an extension.
Nichushkin arrived to the Colorado Avalanche in 2019 via free agency after four seasons with the Dallas Stars. Unfortunately, Nichushkin suffered a hip injury in November of 2014 which required surgery, keeping him out of the Stars’ lineup for several months.
Since arriving to the Avalanche, Nichushkin has played in 182 games, registering 48 goals and 52 assists. His +/- is worlds better since joining the Avalanche: 56 to 13.
Last season, Nichushkin was a big part of the team’s victories: He scored a career-high 25 goals while assisting on 27 other goals, and five of those goals were game-winners.
The news comes after the Avalanche traded with the New York Rangers for goaltender Alexander Georgiev and general manager Joe Sakic confirming that Darcy Kuemper would not be returning after a one-year stint with the team.
The team also re-signed Andrew Cogliano just a couple of days ago.
You really have to give credit to Joe Sakic for getting this deal done in such a short time. Letting a guy like Nichushkin hit free agency would have potentially been bad news and ultimately not very smart.
The Avalanche now need to put their focus on re-signing Nazem Kadri and Andrew Burakovsky. Of course, there still is the chance that Kadri will end up signing with another team due to wanting to cash in. The Avalanche still have to sign center Nathan MacKinnon to a contract extension and that figures to be a pretty huge contract.
The Avalanche have just two picks in the 2022 NHL Draft now, coming in rounds 6 and 7. The team does not have many pressing needs, as they have a significant amount of depth. Nichushkin re-signing just adds to the strength of their roster.