With uncertainty surrounding Colorado Avalanche free agent Nazem Kadri, Alex Newhook could be in line for a breakout season.
The Colorado Avalanche should prepare their in-house options to replace Nazem Kadri. The fact that the Kadri situation is yet to be resolved is not doing the team any favours.
Kadri does have other suitors—it’s just a matter of who and when are they going to free up cap space to sign him.
We can talk about potential free agent replacements for Kadri, but maybe the answer is already on the roster.
The player that the Avalanche should try and replace Kadri with is Alex Newhook. Newhook is a young player who showed potential with the team last year, scoring 13 goals and 20 assists in 71 games. He’s shown some nice potential already, and getting him in the lineup sooner than later could prove the be the right decision.
While training camp doesn’t start for over a month, it would make a lot of sense to give a heads up to the players who are in contention to be Kadri’s replacement. It won’t help the players on the ice at this time, but it can help them get into the mindset of what their tasks would be.
That’s not to say that they should try and copy what Kadri was for them. Unless the Avalanche have a player who is close to the caliber of Kadri (they don’t), they need to adapt to what type of options they do have in the players on the team.
At some point, some team will sign Kadri. It would be shocking at this point if any team agrees to sign him to a $9M AAV deal, which has been reported as his price tag. If there was a team that was willing to do that, it would make sense that it would have happened by now.
Obviously, Kadri was an essential piece to the team’s Stanley Cup run last season. However, at some point, the team needs to say enough is enough and move on.
At this point in time, I feel as if the Avalanche have the availability to get a younger player to replace Kadri. With the stars they currently have, the new replacement should be able to get some experience under his belt and at the same time not hurt the team by being new to his new role.
Getting Newhook accustomed to that new role needs to be a key point in training camp, if that’s the decision they decide to go in.
Not re-signing Kadri also means that the team doesn’t have to trade away anybody to free up cap space right now. Players who were rumoured be heading out of Colorado via a trade was Sam Girard, and also J.T. Compher.
The Colorado Avalanche can’t really go out and sign somebody expensive at this time, so Kadri’s replacement should be in-house.