Even though the NHL season is revving up, we’re still in some of the deadest parts of the season. Preseason is always nice to see where your prospects are at but for the most part, it’s just a waiting period.
This preseason is extra boring considering the fact that we still have to talk about unsigned RFAs. There are just 7 RFAs left and it seems that we are going to be waiting a while for them to sign.
The Colorado Avalanche are looking to get between 6-8 seasons from Rantanen for around $8.4-$8.75 million a season, according to this Athletic article. The Avs have $15,615,239 in projected cap space so the deal is doable but talks have come to a standstill recently. Last season was big for Mikko. The 22-year-old scored 87 points (31 G 56 A), a career-high, in 74 games. The season started hot for the Avs before they hit a wall and slipped up. In the end, they pushed into the 2nd Round of the playoffs before falling to the San Jose Sharks in 7 games.
Even without Rantanen, the Avs will not be lost.
The Avs have placed Andre Burkavosky, a 24-year-old trade pickup from the Washington Capitals. Burkavosky has a Cup ring with the Caps but never found the opportunity to be a big minute player. Rantanen’s absence can be just what Burkavosky needs to find that ice. He has tested out playing with Gabe Landeskog and Nate MacKinnon but their first outing did not go too swimmingly as they ended with a -3 rating but 7 shots on goal. Andre did find a total of 19:11 on the ice for that game.
With this team, having Mikko back will only be a boost to the team. The team added Nazem Kadri, Joonas Donskoi, and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare this offseason to help load up and add depth. Although Mikko’s absence will be noticed but it’s not the end of the World for the Avalanche. Their team is loaded and they’re going to be deadly this season, with and without Mikko Rantanen.
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