Vokoun all but assured

Vokoun All But Assured to be in an Avs Uni Next Year

Yesterday, the Avs put in Qualifiying offers on players, and also let some go.  It was already stated Peter Budaj would not be resigned, however the Avs also did not qualify RFA Brian Elliott.  This means that as of right now the Avs have absolutely no goaltenders on their roster.  To add to that, the Avs also have around $20 mill they have to spend just to get to the cap floor.  This means that Avs will be forced to be big spenders come Friday.  This all but assures the Avs will put a serious offer on Tomas Vokoun, who is ranked as the number one FA goalie available.  As for a backup, there are plenty the Avs could sign who would service as good back ups.  The back up will be almost as important as Vokoun, because of how old Vokoun is.  Vokoun will turn 35 next week and won't be able to carry a full load this season if the Avs want him to succeed.  My bet is the Avs might go after someone like Boucher or even Harding.  Harding is a little bit more of a stretch seeing that he may want to be a starter.

As for the rest of that money the Avs might spend, my bet is they go after another defensmen rather than a forward.  Barring a trade, the Avs are completly loaded with forwards and there already will have to be some regulars who will either be scratched or sent down to the AHL.  If the Avs can get one veteran big body to play this year, I believe the whole team will be changed and looking quite competetive if they can keep healthy.  The one good thing of having an overload of forwards means that if some major injuries occur this year, the Avs might be in a better position than last year.  

Here is what the lineup opening night may look like...

Muller-Duchene-Hejduk
Landeskog-Stastny-Jones
Galiardi-O'Reilly-Hishon
Winnik-McClement-Lindstrom

EJ-Wilson
Quincy-Hunwick/FA signing
Elliott-O'Byrne

Vokoun
Boucher

Honestly I see this lineup and believe that it will really compete in the North West division this year.  Vokoun brings leadership to the back end, and each part of the team has a leader.  Hejduk can lead the forwards and really help them along.  On the defense: Quincy, O'Byrne, and a free agent signing can help the experience on the back end.  Some of the changes you might see are with Landeskog being moved to Duchene's line at some point.  I feel that both their games can help each other out, and help hejduk.  We will see how it translates and what it looks like once the season starts.

Today the Avalanche are introducing their picks, and even doing an autograph session for fans to meet the new players.  I feel this is a fantastic new idea the team is doing in order to help promote a new player.  I just wished they had of done it with Duchene, but it is a good gesture by the team.

We will see exactly what the Avs do in only a few days.  Friday can only come so quickly!