The Colorado Avalanche has not received much attention on the Insider circuit this season, but that may change as the trade deadline nears.
Darren Dreger had a Thursday morning radio hit on Montreal’s TSN 690.
Dreger was asked if he saw the Avalanche “making a big splash at the deadline, especially for a guy who still has term left on his deal due to the fact that they have such problems with secondary scoring.”
“Yeah, I think Joe Sakic has to be in the market for any piece that’s going to help him with that need,” indicated Dreger. “And you’re right, beyond that big line - and that line has been so dynamic this year - they don’t have enough consistent offensive push, so that’s an area of need.
“I guess the question that I would have though is if Sakic is willing to dip into the pool of some of the bigger names, one that comes to mind is Artemi Panarin from the Columbus Blue Jackets. What’s he willing to part with. And you know Jarmo Kekalainen, if he decides he’s trading Panarin, is going to expect a king’s ransom in return, even if Panarin is a rental in this case.
“And then you look at some of the other pieces that could be available. And we’re going to have to spend some time watching Ottawa. I mean, Matt Duchene isn’t going back to Colorado, but Ottawa is leaning towards trying to sign Ryan Dzingel. If they don’t, if they don’t like the numbers that are being thrown out by Newport, who represent Ryan Dzingel, then why wouldn’t Colorado take a look at him. I mean, this guy might end up with 30 goals this season.
“So there could be some available pieces, and I’d be real surprised if Sakic isn’t among the lead contenders for one of those men.”
Panarin will be the prime asset available on the trade market should Kekalainen opt to move him, and the star winger comes with a $6 million cap hit on an expiring two-year, $12 million contract.
Dreger had a noteworthy discussion earlier this week on potential Panarin suitors (from a summer UFA perspective) and the level of contract for which he may be looking.
Dreger also alluded to the Sens perhaps shifting their thinking on Dzingel, who is in the final months of his two-year, $3.6 million contract. Dzingel can also become a UFA July 1.
Contract-related info via CapFriendly