The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club has announced the signing of restricted free agent forward Ross Colton to a four-year contract, extending through the 2026-27 season. The acquisition of Colton came through a trade with the Tampa Bay Lightning, with the Avalanche giving up a second-round selection in the 2023 NHL Draft.
Known for his aggressive style of play and penchant for shooting, this forward excels in creating scoring opportunities, particularly near the net. With an increase in ice time, expect his goal-scoring efficiency to go up in Colorado.
The contract breaks down as follows:
- Year 1 $4M Salary
- Year 2 $3.5M Salary & $500K Signing Bonus
- Year 3 $4M Salary
- Year 4 $4M Salary
There is a no-trade clause in Year 2 and a modified no-trade Years 3 & 4. This deal covers 1 RFA & 3 UFA years.
Colton, 26, showcased his skills during his time with the Lightning, recording 32 points (16 goals, 16 assists) in 81 games last season. Drafted in the fourth round (118th overall) of the 2016 NHL Draft by Tampa Bay, Colton has amassed 83 points (47 goals, 36 assists) in 190 career NHL games, all with the Lightning. He has also contributed significantly in the postseason, tallying 19 points (10 goals, 9 assists) in 52 playoff appearances.
Notably, Colton played a pivotal role in helping the Lightning secure the Stanley Cup in 2021, scoring the Cup-clinching, game-winning goal in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Montreal Canadiens.
Avalanche General Manager Chris MacFarland expressed his confidence in Colton’s abilities, highlighting his work ethic, two-way play, physicality, and championship experience. MacFarland believes that Colton’s versatility will make him a valuable addition to the Avalanche’s lineup in various capacities.
With Colton now signed to a four-year contract worth $4 million per year, the Avalanche aim to maximize his contributions and bolster their roster for the upcoming seasons.
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