I think it's safe to say the Avs had high hopes for Dennis Everberg this year coming off a rookie season where he played 55 games and showed a hint that he could be a solid bottom-6 winger. Although he started the year in San Antonio, he was quickly called up once Mikko proved too raw and Rendulic too useless as NHL forwards. Needless to say it didn't turn out well.
Evs started in a 4th line role, saw his TOI fall, rise, then fall off the table completely before heading back to the Rampage permanently. Unfortunately for him, the Avs great need this year was at center so there never was a second chance to prove his worth even with the great strides he made in the AHL.
MHH Survey Grade: 63.0%
I think that grade is a bit harsh but my opinion is colored by what I saw in the minors as well as the NHL. After last year he was asked to work on some things, mainly to do with complementing his usually solid defensive play with a little more puck skills and offense, but was put in a different role entirely.
Actually it was more like no role, because that's basically how the Avs have treated the 4th line for the past few years. It's a mismatched collection of disparate talents with no discernible functions other than to eat ice time while the other players rest, provide a boat for Cody McLeod to anchor and serve as a repository for struggling and/or punished forwards from other lines. Perhaps once the staff crafts a lineup where the 4th can be a cohesive unit with purpose, as it has been in some very rare occasions, rather than 3 dissimilar guys just skating around it will become a net positive, like it is on many other squads in the NHL.
Anyway, back to Evs. It seemed to me that he tried a little too hard to play better offensively which came at the expense of solid positional play. Coach Roy echoed this at one of his pressers back in the late fall and ultimately that's what led to his demotion. Back in San Antonio, he crafted a solid season ending up 4th on the team in scoring (15G/25A) while also killing penalties and taking shifts late in games in the handful of games they had the lead.
I think it's a shame he's going back to Sweden (signed with Vaxjo already) because he's capable of being a solid bottom-6er if need be. It seems to me that the Avs were looking for someone like say... Shawn Matthias when they picked up Everberg as a free agent 2 years ago. That trade more than anything told me his tenure with the Avs was over.
What say you, dear reader?