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Colorado Avalanche: News from around the NHL October 1st, 2014

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Hey folks, guess what!?  It's October! Finally! Woo-freaking-hoo! It's about freaking time.

National Post has an article about the "Ten Players to Keep an Eye on". The Avs are represented on the list.

JAROME IGINLA

The long-time Flame enters his 20th NHL season with a new team for the second straight year after signing a three-year deal worth US$16 million with the Colorado Avalanche. Iginla signed with Boston as a free agent last year and had a solid season on the top line as he hit the 30-goal mark while playing alongside Milan Lucic and David Krejci. Lining up beside Matt Duchene isn’t exactly a downgrade and the 37-year-old Iginla should be primed for another big season as he searches for that elusive Stanley Cup ring.

For the Fantasy Hockey peeps; top 200 players.

My fundamental hockey pool strategy rarely varies – it is to rely on safe, mostly proven choices and leave the higher-risk, higher-reward selections for braver souls. This is particularly true when it comes to injuries, which are often the single biggest deciding factor in your team’s success or failure – and also the most difficult to predict.

A case in point: Last year, I recommended Steve Stamkos over Sidney Crosby as the top choice because Stamkos had played every game for four consecutive while Crosby had had this unbelievable run of freak injuries that derailed season after season. So what happened? Stamkos broke his leg in November (when he was actually leading the league in scoring) and Crosby made it through the year mostly unscathed. The theory was sound, but it wouldn’t have worked out for anybody who went in that direction.

Well the NHL squashed the Oilers dreams.

Oops.

The feel good story of the day didn’t even make it to sundown Tuesday.

Less than six hours after the Edmonton Oilers announced that they had signed 141-pound Russian winger Vladimir Tkachev to a three-year entry level contract, the National Hockey League tapped them on the shoulder and said “Oh no you didn’t.”

The league rejected the deal, informing Edmonton that the collective bargaining agreement clearly states that the teenage sensation is ineligible to sign with anyone until next summer.

“We missed it,” said Oilers general manager Craig MacTavish, making the telephone interview rounds in the wake of this rather embarrassing turn of events.

“It’s just a bad ending to a really good story. I feel bad on a number of fronts. First, that we missed it. Second, I feel bad for the kid who was so excited to sign an NHL contract.

“And third for our organization — it looked like we had a pretty good player.”

Like soccer jerseys? Someone decided to make the NHL team jersey into soccer jerseys. Some are pretty awesome.