Colorado Avalanche Goalie Depth Chart Part II: The Minor Leaguers – Mile High Hockey
When the Colorado Avalanche wrapped up their 2017-18 NHL season, they had two playoff teams – the NHL club and their ECHL affiliate in Loveland an hour north – and an AHL affiliate in San Antonio that finished underwhelmingly down at the bottom of the Central Division regular season standings.
Luckily, that mean that both of the AHL goaltenders were available to help the Avalanche in their playoff run – since Semyon Varlamov wasn’t available at all in the first round, and Jonathan Bernier went down as well.
Heading into next season, the Avalanche took that cautionary tale to heart. They’ve brought back two of their current depth options, added a more healthy NHL goaltender as a number two, and then picked up a promising overseas rookie to solidify their minor league depth for the year.
Last week, I looked at what their depth chart looked like at the NHL level. Now, here’s a look at the three minor league options on NHL deals*, as well:
*Spencer Martin, while still unsigned for the 2018-19 season, was qualified by the Avalanche and is expected to be back on a deal by training camp. THE VETERAN ROOKIE: PAVEL FRANCOUZ
2017-18 season: 35 GP | .946 SV% (regular season, KHL)
The Avalanche made sure to solidify their minor league depth before the offseason had even truly gotten under way, signing KHL standout Pavel Francouz to a one-year, $690,000 deal for the 2018-19 NHL season.
Despite optimistic hopes from the fanbase that Francouz was brought on to serve as a team backup, there’s been little indication from anyone that the 28-year-old Czech national is expected to begin the year anywhere but the AHL’s Colorado Eagles – although if he makes quick work of adapting to the North American ice surface at the minor league