Wait, why are we talking about Seattle Kraken defender Vince Dunn?!
While we are not our friends over at Davy Jones’ Locker Room covering the Kraken, this recent signing made by their defender could shake up the market in the coming years. Dunn signed an impressive four-year, $7.35 million AAV deal Friday to stay in the Pacific Northwest and play in Climate Pledge Arena.
The move by Dunn is a big one after having a career year in the back. The 26-year-old’s high AAV for the next four years almost doubles his last two-year deal signed by Kraken GM Ron Francis.
But how does this affect the Colorado Avalanche?
Of course, on the ice, it just means they will have to deal with his grinding, hard-defensive style with a scoring touch for the next four years in the West. Off the ice, it can shake up the Avs lineup starting next summer leaving the front office with some decisions to make.
Specifically, this involves current defenseman Devon Toews. The 29-year-old’s deal is up at season's end, as he currently has a $4.1 million AAV. Dunn’s previous deal saw him making just $100K less than Toews currently is at exactly $4 million. Thus, the two are comparable contract-wise.
On the ice, Toews and Dunn are also pretty comparable. Dunn in his most recent year recorded 14 goals and 50 assists in 81 games. Meanwhile, Toews only got half the goals Dunn had and only 43 assists in 80 games. Of course, Toews had to be moved around the lineup and paired differently almost every night due to injuries.
Defensively, Toews blocked more shots (138 vs. 80) and had fewer giveaways (39 vs. 54), both career-highs for Colorado’s No. 7. Dunn recorded more hits thrown (115 vs. 93) and takeaways (50 vs. 45).
Devon Toews is a nightmare lol pic.twitter.com/MLYaukO1jb— Dimitri Filipovic (@DimFilipovic) February 28, 2023
Toews’ agent will certainly be looking at this when it comes time to negotiate a new contract with Chris MacFarland and Joe Sakic. It wouldn't be a surprise to see them comparing Dunn and Toews together with their statistics on the ice when asking for Toews to be paid - perhaps around the $7.35 million mark set by Dunn or higher.
The question then becomes can Toews get paid in Colorado or will he have to go elsewhere, whether for a deal at the trade deadline or in free agency next summer? Can he be the top man without being Cale Makar’s defensive partner? Or does he only look better being paired with No. 8?
Wrote about the Colorado Avalanche defensemen, how they picked apart the Blues, and how good Cale Makar and Devon Toews are in the transition game.@EPRinksidehttps://t.co/oC9g4LtGO2 pic.twitter.com/rTzFsbFFDU— Dimitri Filipovic (@DimFilipovic) May 26, 2021
Would Colorado even consider any high deal for Toews having to re-sign Jonathan Drouin (if he does well) next year, along with Logan O’Connor and Mikko Rantanen at the end of the 2025-26 season? Will the cap rise enough in the coming years to make those deals happen plus bring back Toews?
There are plenty of questions with very few answers. Colorado has a lot to think about in the future when it comes to its back end. What do they do? Let us know in the comments below!