One last piece of the Colorado Avalanche’s offseason is complete with the signing of left handed defenseman Ryan Murray to a one-year contract worth $2 million.
The former 2012 second overall draft selection by the Columbus Blue Jackets Murray spent seven seasons with the organization before moving on to New Jersey prior to the 2020-21 season where he scored 14 points in 48 games. No doubt Avalanche assistant general manager Chris MacFarland was comfortable with and influential in bringing Murray in on a reasonable contract.
This signing was somewhat anticipated as the defensive depth chart was looking a bit thin with the departures of Ryan Graves and Conor Timmins over the last couple of weeks. The questions surrounding Murray have always been about his health but at the relatively low price point and no-risk term the Avalanche have acquired useful depth and NHL experience for the blueline. Murray could pair with Bowen Byram to complete a strong defensive core.
Ryan Murray, signed 1x$2M by COL, struggled in New Jersey but prior to that had a very strong track record with Columbus when healthy. Pretty solid bet for the Avs. #GoAvsGo pic.twitter.com/XdiHBGDVxc— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) August 2, 2021
Now the Avalanche 2021-22 roster may be finalized with just a million or two dollars of cap space to spare depending on how many depth contracts and extra players the organization wants to carry on the NHL roster. Another middle six wing would be nice to replace the departed Brandon Saad and Joonas Donskoi but if the Avalanche want to get Alex Newhook in the lineup they may be set at forward as well.