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Avalanche Exploring Goalie Trade Options as Francouz Recovers

The Colorado Avalanche are on the hunt for a goaltending solution amidst Pavel Francouz’s recovery.

In a recent report by Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff, the Colorado Avalanche are actively exploring trade options in their search for a potential replacement for Pavel Francouz. The 33-year-old backup goaltender is expected to miss both the training camp and the beginning of the upcoming season due to his ongoing recovery from offseason adductor surgery. That leaves the Avalanche in a bit of a bind, especially considering their salary cap situation.

Seravalli pointed out that the Avalanche management appears to be closely examining their options in the goaltender market. Concerns have arisen about Francouz’s recovery progress, and there’s a growing worry that he might be sidelined for an extended period. Seravalli writes, “Francouz has not completely recovered from his offseason adductor surgery and there is concern he will miss some time. Francouz made just 16 starts for the Avalanche last season.”

If he can’t go, that leaves the Avs with Alexandar Georgiev as their lone starter, with the hope that someone like Justus Annunen can step up having played only four NHL games in his career.

Pavel Francouz Avalanche
Pavel Francouz Avalanche

One notable candidate for a trade is Casey DeSmith, who recently moved to Montreal from the Pittsburgh Penguins in a complex three-team trade involving the Canadiens, Penguins, and Sharks. The Canadiens have expressed their willingness to move DeSmith, making him an attractive option for the Avalanche.

Another intriguing development involves Jaroslav Halak, who has indicated his commitment to playing in the 2023-24 NHL season despite still being a free agent. With limited interest in his services thus far, Halak could potentially step into the picture as a viable stopgap solution for the Avalanche.

The Avs Are Limited Unless Francouz Goes on LTIR

Financially, the Avalanche are not in the most favorable position to explore these options. With approximately $500,000 in cap space after placing Gabriel Landeskog on LTIR to start the season, the team has little flexibility to accommodate a new goaltender, unless Pavel Francouz begins the season on LTIR. Even then, his $2 million salary would need to come back on the books once he’s cleared to play.

This financial maneuvering poses a bit of a hurdle for the Avalanche.

Next: Toronto Maple Leafs: The Battle for the Top-Line Left-Wing Spot

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