Happy Monday, Mile High readers! I have just returned from a terrific vacation on Cape Cod. The quaint cottage we stayed at was a stone's throw from the ocean but one of the nicest features may have been the complete lack of TV, internet or phone. I don't have the most hectic life around, but it was still great to be forced to unplug for a couple of days.
It did mean that I completely missed all Avalanche news for the last few days, which appears to mostly encompass the NHL draft. I did get up on Saturday morning to run down to a little convenience store (staffed entirely by attractive 20-something Russian girls) to grab a Boston Globe. I rushed back to the cottage, sat down on the couch, flipped to the last page of the sports section and searched through the draft recap to see who the Avs drafted in round one. You can probably guess. My reaction was "who?"
I've never heard of Joey Hishon, which by no means is an indication that he won't succeed in the NHL. The Avalanche scouting department is very high on Hishon, and that, for now, is good enough for me. Their 4 previous first round picks are Matt Duchene, Kevin Shattenkirk, Chris Stewart and Wojtek Wolski and you have to go back to Jonas Johansson in 2002 for their last first round bust. The Avalanche scouting department has built up some goodwill collateral. No complaints from me (and I'm very excited to see them land Calvin Pickard in the 2nd round).
However, there is a "yes, but" coming. I fully expected to come back and hear about the extensions signed by potential RFA's Chris Stewart, Peter Mueller, Kyle Quincey and Brandon Yip. Today is the deadline to tender a qualifying offer to those four to retain their rights. While you can be sure the Avs have done that, I kind of thought at least three of them would have been signed to long-term deals before today to keep other teams from driving up their price with a ridiculous offer sheet. The silence on this front is a little worrisome. I know the Avs' front office has been busy with stuff (like laughing at the ridiculous rookie pictures, such as the one above), but this RFA thing is kind of a big deal. I hope we'll learn more about the fate of the big four (as well as Derek Peltier, Wes O'Neill and Codey Burki) as the day progresses. And I hope it's news that we'll like.
Speaking of free agency, the big primer on UFA forwards that was going to be done for today has been delayed by our stupid van. Well, specifically the alternator of said stupid van which decided to conk out smack dab in the middle of I-95. That was quite an experience, let me tell you - having all electrical shut down while going 75 miles an hour on a busy freeway. This includes headlights and windshield wipers, which were going to be necessary with an incoming storm. And then when the car stopped moving...well, guh. Anyway, we did finally make it home (without the van), but we had to wait for someone to drive down and pick us up and I got home too late to churn that out. Look for that on Wednesday.