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Colorado Avalanche extend qualifying offers to RFAs; cut ties with Duncan Siemens

Avalanche fail to qualify Siemens, making the former 11th overall pick an unrestricted free agent

2011 NHL Entry Draft - Portraits

Yesterday was the deadline for NHL teams to extend qualifying offers to their restricted free agents. The Colorado Avalanche decided to extend offers to Matt Nieto, Spencer Martin, Patrik Nemeth, Mason Geertsen and Ryan Graves while deciding to decline the rights of Nail Yakupov, Duncan Siemens, Felix Girard, Jesse Graham, and Reid Petryk.

It looks as though the their time iwth the Avalanche has come to an end for both Yakupov and Siemens.

After a decent start to last season, Yakupov’s play trailed off as he found himself in and out of the lineup when the team was getting good. He ended the season with 9 goals in 58 games and just didn’t provide the secondary scoring punch the team had hoped.

As for Siemens, the 11th overall pick in the 2011 draft was never able to develop into the NHL defenseman the organization was hoping for. He had a very strong season in San Antonio and was a decent fill in late in the season when injuries started to pile up in Denver.

Siemens played 16 games with the Avs and actually surprised a lot of people with how competanant he looked at the NHL level. Unfortunately, it was too little, too late as the team has decided to move on from the 24-year old defender.

As for the RFAs that received qualifying offers, Graves, Geertsen and Martin will provide added depth to the Colorado Eagles as they make the jump into the AHL.

Over the weekend, Joe Sakic spoke about working on a contract extension with Nemeth while Nieto’s agent mentioned that the two sides were getting close to a new deal.