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Looking at the current Avalanche lineup

Some holes have been filled, but more still needs to be done.

Colorado Avalanche v Nashville Predators - Game Four Photo by Mickey Bernal/Getty Images

With the madness of free agency opening over the weekend slowly dying down, the Avs have made some moves and built up more of their roster. Here is a look at what the roster currently looks like and how it came to be, including changes made in the offseason.

Colorado Avalanche Projected Lines

Jonathan Drouin - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen
Artturi Lehkonen - Ryan Johansen - Valeri Nichushkin
Miles Wood - Ross Colton* - Logan O’Connor
Andrew Cogliano - ??? (Ben Meyers*) - ??? (Frederick Olofsson)

Cale Makar - Devon Toews
Bowen Byram - Josh Manson
Sam Girard - Jack Johnson

Joining the Avs: Ryan Johansen, Jonathan Drouin, Miles Wood, Ross Colton, Frederick Olofsson

Re-signed by the Avs: Bowen Byram, Andrew Cogliano, Jack Johnson

Moving on from the Avs: J.T. Compher, Erik Johnson, Denis Malgin, Alex Newhook, Lars Eller, Evan Rodrigues

The moves have shaken up the team more so than it has arguably even after winning the 2022 Stanley Cup. Even from 2021, this team has changed drastically. Needing depth and losing some such as Compher, Malgin, and Newhook sees the Avs need to bring in more forward depth. Meyers and Colton haven’t been re-signed to a contract yet but would slot into the team at the moment should they be signed.

They will need more forward depth, especially if they don’t want to play the newly-recruited Olofsson from the Dallas Stars. Otherwise, the forwards available with the Colorado Eagles would not suffice as NHL players at the moment. Therefore, another forward or two might be necessary to grab off the market to slot into the top six and push others down, or just fit into the bottom six.

The same goes for defense. Jack Johnson has replaced the other Johnson, Erik that is, moving on from the Avs after being the longest-tenured player as the sixth defenseman. Brad Hunt and Kurtis MacDermid are the seventh and eighth defenders, along with a longshot belonging to Sam Malinski. If they want another defender and not wanting to rely on MacDermid or the Eagles bunch, they can do so.

Who is left on the market?

There are still some good names left on the free-agent market for the Avs to pick up if they’d want. The biggest names left include former Chicago Blackhawks Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews along with Vladimir Tarasenko. Any of the three would likely be placed in the top six, pushing down likely Johansen or Drouin. However, there are still some other ones out there too such as Max Comtois, Pius Suter, and Jesse Puljujarvi.

In terms of defenders, there are also some options out there. The highest-ranked defender is Matt Dumba, but it would seem highly unlikely he’d be able to take a significant pay cut to move to a division rival. Ethan Bear has been a name floated around as a possible sixth defender, which wouldn’t be a bad move. Another defender not named enough which would be an interesting choice is Travis Dermott, the former Toronto Maple Leafs and Vancouver Canucks defender. He’s struggled with playing time, but if he gets some under his belt could work out.

With about $6.8M left in cap space thanks to Gabriel Landeskog being on LTIR for the entire year, there are chances to make moves to sign another forward or two, along with an extra defender. This money needs to go to Colton, could go to Ben Meyers, and might go to another player on the market. With choices to be made, what does Chris MacFarland do? Let us know in the comments below!