Avalanche

Lunch Special: What’s the Avalanche’s chemistry like with Matt Duchene still on the roster?
The Denver Post’s Mike Chambers on Wednesday answered your questions about the Colorado Avalanche in a live Lunch Special chat. Here are the highlights: So, at this point does it look like Matt Duchene will be on the Avs this year? Mike: At this point it looks like Matt Duchene will be on the opening-night roster (Oct. 5 at NYR). No rush to trade him if Colorado is happy with its D to begin the season. Since it looks like No. 9 will be here for at least the short term do you have any feel for the chemistry in the room going into the season? Mike: Chemistry can’t be great with Duchene’s deal, but he’s not the kind of guy to act out … meaning he’s not going to treat his teammates poorly. He’s not mad at them. He’s mad at the GM and his staff. If you had to predict right now, who would be the seven defenseman the Avs are taking into the season? Mike: About your question, we just finished Jared Bednar’s post-practice presser. In tomorrow’s final preseason game, he’s going with Erik Johnson-Anton Lindholm, Chris Bigras-Tyson Barrie, David Warsofsky-Nikita Zadorov. That said, Mark Barberio will make the team and probably be top-six. So Lindholm likely will be top seven. Make no mistake, the guys playing tomorrow are the guys who are going to make the team. Who’s impressed you during the preseason? I like Mikko Rantanen. I think he’s going to have a big, big year. Mike: Mikko Rantanen might be the best forward on this team … Or the best playmaker, at least. Gabe Landeskog being on the 3rd line tomorrow, is that a testament to his play or just because of a better pairing? Mike: They’ll generally roll lines tomorrow because the score isn’t the biggest concern. Don’t make too much of the lines. Plus, Landeskog playing with J.T. Compher and Colin Wilson looks like a good trio. Landeskog could quickly be interchanged with Nail Yakupov, who is currently with Matt Duchene and Alex Kerfoot. Given the effectiveness of Matt Duchene on the face-off do you believe that could keep him in the team and with the presence of Yakopov? Can Duchene change his mind? Mike: Duchene changing his mind on whether he wants to play for this team or not isn’t up to him. If he wants to play in the NHL right now, this is his only option. As for face-offs, no, that is not a concern. Plenty of good face-off guys on this team including Compher, Kerfoot, Wilson etc. Do you think Carl Soderberg will be playing opening night? Mike: No. I would be shocked if he plays Oct. 5 at NYR, barring injuries. He’ll be scratched tomorrow in the final preseason game. That says a lot. With so many better and younger options on D, is it possible that Jared Cowen makes the team purely on his “veteran presence”? He has not looked good Mike: Jared Cowen could make the team as No. 7 or No. 8, as a depth guy. But he’s not in top six. The Avs don’t want the young guys at seven or eight. They want them playing in the AHL — so Cowen could fill that seven or eight role. What’s your take on Duncan Siemens? Does he actually break out this year? Mike: Duncan Siemens is in position to make the team because, unlike the younger/more inexperienced D, he could be that 5-6-7-8 guy and get better while in the NHL in a limited role. Can’t say that about Lindholm and Andrei Mironov, and Bigras to a certain extent. What’s your season prediction for the Avs? Do they even sniff the playoffs? Mike: I’ll say they sniff the playoffs. Much depends on Semyon Varlamov in net and how the young depth D comes together. They’ll be much quicker, faster — and probably more fun to watch. In your estimation, how short of a leash is Sakic on this season? Mike: Well, I think it’s a long leash because the team will be better — thus ownership will continue to believe the GM is turning things around. How excited are you for your first trip to cover the Avs in Vegas? Mike: If they send me … But sure, I’ll be excited. I’m a black jack guy. To clarify, the editors are still figuring out our long-term coverage of this team. Has there been any discussion as to why the Avs let Calvin Pickard get taken in exchange for an older, more expensive Bernier? Did they not feel he had trade value or starting goalie potential? Was it really worth the “vote of confidence” for Varly? Or were they legitimately worried Varly could be plucked? Mike: Losing Pickard to Vegas could have absolutely been prevented. No way would Knights take Varlamov. I have special intelligence on that. Vegas GM George McPhee traded Varlamov to Colorado when he was GM at Washington for a reason — he didn’t believe in the player. And yes, if I’m KSE I’m furious that my payroll grew by $1.7M or whatever it was for a backup goalie, to have Bernier repla [...]
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Avalanche places first-round draft pick Duncan Siemens on waivers
The Avalanche placed defenseman Duncan Siemens on waivers Friday in a move designed to part ways with the 2011 first-round draft pick. Siemens, 24, played just four NHL games in four seasons since signing an entry-level contract in 2013. He practiced with the Avs on Friday and coach Jared Bednar said he might remain with the team if he is not claimed during the 24-hour waiver window. “That moves gives us a little flexibility,” Bednar said. Siemens, the 11th overall pick of his draft class, likely will be reassigned to Colorado’s American Hockey League affiliate, the San Antonio Rampage, if he is not claimed. Siemens signed a one-year, $874,125 contract over the summer. Week away. The Avalanche defeated the Vegas Golden Knights 4-2 in Thursday’s preseason finale, finishing 4-2 in the exhibition season. The Avs will have a week off from games before their regular-season opener next Thursday at the New York Rangers. “We’ve got some work to do. We don’t want to be too long (between games) but we had a decent practice today, will have a real good practice tomorrow,” Bednar said Friday. “We want to have a couple real good practices before we take off for New York to open the season….We have some significant work to do. We’re going to have to be better than that come regular season if we want to win.” Injury update. Forwards Joe Colborne (back) and A.J. Greer (concussion) are nearing returns from injury but goalie Jonathan Bernier (groin) is further away. Colborne skated in a red jersey with the team Friday after Greer skated on his own. Bernier is doing off-ice conditioning. About Colborne, Bednar said, “I think the plan is to get him back in regular jersey, hopefully, Monday or Tuesday.” Related ArticlesSeptember 30, 2017 Duncan Siemens clears waivers, examines situation with Avalanche September 29, 2017 Avalanche-Eagles AHL partnership to be formally announced Monday September 28, 2017 Two museums for Colorado sports fans tucked away in Denver September 27, 2017 Defenseman Chris Bigras in the opening-night mix for the Avalanche September 27, 2017 Lunch Special: What’s the Avalanche’s chemistry like with Matt Duchene still on the roster? Regarding Greer he said, “He’s been working out off the ice. He’s doing better. They progressed him to skating.” Footnote. Center Nathan MacKinnon, defenseman Erik Johnson and goalie Semyon Varlamov took maintenance days Friday and didn’t practice. … The Avs will finalize their 23-man roster Tuesday. They are carrying 29 players, including goalie Joe Cannata, who is replacing Bernier, plus Siemens and defenseman Sergei Boikov (dislocated shoulder), who will be placed on injured reserve. [...]
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Duncan Siemens clears waivers, examines situation with Avalanche
Avalanche defenseman Duncan Siemens cleared waivers Saturday morning before practicing with the team that tried to dismiss him. For Siemens, the No. 11 selection in the 2011 draft who has played just four career NHL games, the situation isn’t as strange as it seems. He’s still under contract, and still has a chance to play in the NHL this season. By Tuesday, however, he is expected to be reassigned to Colorado’s American Hockey League affiliate, the San Antonio Rampage. “Obviously, it’s very competitive here,” Siemens said after Avs practice. “They were honest with me when we chatted about it. They want some room to do some things if they presented themselves. At the end of the day, I’m not in San Antonio right now so I’ll still have an opportunity to keep fighting for a job. That’s all I can ask for at this point, to keep working day in and day out, and continue to work for that job.” The silver lining of not being claimed by any of the 30 NHL teams is that Siemens maintains the familiarity with his surroundings. He played 73 games for San Antonio last season and 53 in 2015-16, and knows who he has to beat out to get another crack in Colorado. “I’ve been able to build relationships here in Colorado since I was drafted. I have that sense of comfortability that makes it a little bit easier to go in and play your game,” Siemens said. “That aspect of it is definitely nice. If it was the latter (if he was claimed), you just learn to adjust. That’s how that game is for a guy like me. You have to adjust to every type of situation and as the years have gone on I’ve gotten better at that.” Related ArticlesSeptember 29, 2017 Avalanche-Eagles AHL partnership to be formally announced Monday September 29, 2017 Avalanche places first-round draft pick Duncan Siemens on waivers September 28, 2017 Two museums for Colorado sports fans tucked away in Denver September 27, 2017 Defenseman Chris Bigras in the opening-night mix for the Avalanche September 27, 2017 Lunch Special: What’s the Avalanche’s chemistry like with Matt Duchene still on the roster? Bernier still out. Goalie Jonathan Bernier missed another practice Saturday with a groin injury and it’s looking like Joe Cannata will begin the season as Semyon Varlamov‘s backup. Bernier, who was injured Monday in a preseason game at Dallas, was previously listed as day-to-day by coach Jared Bednar, who did not address the media Saturday. The Avs will depart for New York on Wednesday and open the season Thursday against the Rangers. Cannata, 27, who has never played in the NHL, wouldn’t mind being on that flight. “Like I said since the day I got here, it’s an honor to be around these guys and learn from them,” he said. “Just trying to take it all in, make myself better. Whatever happens, happens.” Footnote. The Avs continue to carry 29 players, including the injured Bernier, A.J. Greer (concussion) and Sergei Boikov (shoulder). The 26 available players practiced Saturday and the lines and defensive pairings were the same from Thursday’s preseason finale in Las Vegas. … Colorado will take Sunday off before practicing Monday morning — an hour before the noon news conference in Loveland to officially announce that the Colorado Eagles will become the AHL’s 31st team and serve as the Avalanche’s top affiliate. [...]
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Avalanche-Eagles AHL partnership to be formally announced Monday
The Colorado Eagles will formerly announce their partnership with the Colorado Avalanche and the American Hockey League in a joint news conference Monday at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland. The Eagles, currently of the third-tier ECHL, will become the Avalanche’s AHL affiliate — stocked with the NHL team’s top prospects — beginning in 2018-19. The Denver Post broke the story last month, noting renovation and expansion plans to the Budweiser Events Center. Speakers at Monday’s noon news conference will include Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic, Eagles CEO Martin Lind, Eagles GM Chris Stewart and AHL CEO Dave Andrews. The event is not open to the public but will be streamed live on Facebook. [...]
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Two museums for Colorado sports fans tucked away in Denver
Coloradans are fortunate because the state is home to professional athletes representing nearly everybody’s choice of sport. Some compete individually while others play on teams that thousands rally around. Some teams have made history by winning championships, like the Denver Broncos, Colorado Rapids and Colorado Avalanche.Here are two Denver museums that celebrate Colorado sports teams and sports in general. National Ballpark Museum: Address: 1940 Blake St. Hours: noon-5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday Contact: 303-974-5835 Price: $10, $5 for seniors (65 and older), free for ages 12 and younger and active-duty military The scoop: Almost hidden in plain sight across the street from Coors Field, amid the bars and craziness of Lodo, is the National Ballpark Museum. Bruce Hellerstein, the museum’s curator and president, has dedicated his life to collecting “around” 1,000 artifacts that tell the story of baseball. Smithsonian Books recognized the museum as one of the top 21 finest private baseball collections in the world. Although it specializes in artifacts from older ballparks, the National Ballpark Museum also pays homage to Colorado baseball teams. Before the Colorado Rockies, local fans cheered the Denver Bears, a minor league team. Notable Denver Bears memorabilia at the museum include a bench seat from Bears Stadium and a ticket from a game in 1948. Other artifacts include a loaned bat that Andres Galarraga used for the first hit in Colorado Rockies history. What the curator says: “One of the main functions (of the museum) is to have the youth of this country celebrate baseball. Baseball’s lifeblood is its history. The more the youth learns about this the better the national pasttime will be.” – Bruce Hellerstein Colorado Sports Hall of Fame: Address: 1701 Bryant St. (Gate 1) Hours: 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays Contact: 720-258-3888, coloradosports.org Price: Free The scoop: The Colorado Sports Hall of Fame is both a hall of fame and a museum. Although it’s relatively small, it’s a “must see” for Colorado sports fans. Inside you’ll learn the story of Colorado athletes like John Elway of the Broncos, Dan Issel of the Nuggets and Patrick Roy of the Avalanche. There’s a wall dedicated to Special Olympics athletes and an area where children can don shoulder pads and a Broncos jersey and get their picture taken. You can also get a “behind the scenes” tour of the museum and Sports Authority Field at Mile High for $20. The tour takes you through the museum, the visiting team locker room, party suites, the end zone and other interesting areas of the stadium. Tours leave every hour on the hour when the museum is open. While you’re there, check out the Mile High Monument, a miniature version of the Broncos’ old stadium. It sits outside the stadium and it is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Thursday-Saturday and 30 minutes after the main parking lots open on Broncos home game days. What the marketing and tour director says: “It is a bright, shiny museum here and it is free to the public. We take great pride in our tour guides. We’re just a wonderful museum for the city of Denver.” – Kate Becker [...]
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Meet Danielle Cantor, the NBA’s only female agent with a client
Danielle Cantor selects a unique ringtone for every client. Whenever Milwaukee Bucks center Greg Monroe calls, a hybrid hip-hop and jazz song plays. If she hears a kick drum cut through a loud beat, it must be Monroe’s teammate Malcolm Brogdon. At this moment, in a ninth floor Northwest Washington corner office designed as a monument to success, the sound of rapper 21 Savage, Otto Porter Jr.’s favorite artist, signals that the Washington Wizards forward is on the line. Soon, Porter shows up to debrief before the start of the NBA season with Cantor and David Falk, the super agent who once represented Michael Jordan and Patrick Ewing. Cantor is Falk’s lone partner in his sports agency, F.A.M.E., but in the NBA she holds an even rarer distinction: the only woman, among approximately 30 certified by the National Basketball Players Association, to solely represent an active player. While Falk serves as the primary agent for F.A.M.E. clients such as Porter and Monroe, Brogdon elected to sign directly with Cantor. “As a minority in this country, I think it’s important that you give other people that are overlooked or not given similar opportunities — you give them a chance, as well,” said Brogdon, who in June became the first player in NBA history selected in the second round to win the rookie of the year award. “I know what it feels like to be overlooked in the business or not be given credit or just not to given an opportunity. “I thought it would be breaking the glass ceiling and we’d be doing something special together.” Cantor tailors a brand that best fits the personality of Brogdon, a four-year college player and Virginia graduate who holds a master’s degree. For his first sponsorship deal, she chose a bank. The week before training camp, she flew to Milwaukee to sit in on his five-hour commercial shoot and, after Brogdon weighed in a little less than the Bucks expected, Cantor smoothed things over with the team. While there, she also put in face-time with Monroe, dining out and holding his last contract discussion before he hits free agency in 10 months. By that weekend, Cantor was overseeing Porter’s move into his new home in Arlington, Virginia, which comes after F.A.M.E. helped him negotiate a four-year, $106 million maximum contract to remain with the Wizards this summer. This ability, to passionately advocate on behalf of her clients to NBA general managers or even moving companies, helped convince Porter to sign with F.A.M.E. in 2013. “First impression was, ‘God dang, who is this woman?’ ” Porter said. “She’s fierce. She gets stuff done.” The mother of two young girls, the Potomac, Maryland-based Cantor was recognized this month by the SportsBusiness Journal as a “Game Changer,” an honor given to 35 women in leadership positions across sports. While Cantor didn’t even realize she was the only current female NBA agent with a client until she was informed by the publication, NBPA Executive Director Michele Roberts said the fact that there aren’t more is disheartening. “It is an incredibly, incredibly competitive field. I suspect that there’s more dirty laundry than I even want to admit exists,” Roberts said. “Agents themselves tell me it really is a raw-knuckled brawl kind of business. It may be that it’s just the kind of work that women just find distasteful on some levels. I suspect that not a lot of women are trying to knock on these doors, and that disappoints me.” Cantor has never really felt like a pioneer — even though she has always kind of been one, stretching back to her days as a ballgirl in the first season the then-Washington Bullets hired females for the job. Growing up in Bethesda, Maryland, it was normal to be one of the boys. When Noah Cantor and his buddies played football, so did his little sister. The peer-like relationship of the Cantor siblings was cemented one day at their grandmother’s house when Noah was teasing Danielle, pinning her down. She fought back by knocking his front tooth out. “Some of us were probably a little more scared of her than she was of us,” Noah said. That intensity translated to the soccer field, where Danielle was an All-Met goalkeeper at Whitman High School. During a Maryland state finals game for her club team, the Bethesda Shakers, a fearless Cantor lunged to stop a breakaway. The move saved a goal, but Cantor sustained a concussion. She left the field in an ambulance. She was “very, very competitive,” former Whitman High girls’ soccer coach Sam DeBone said of his four-year varsity letter winner, calling her “the kind of athlete every coach would like to have.” “In fact,” DeBone added, “if I had a whole team of Danielle Cantors, I’d be very successful.” Cantor suffered so many injuries — [...]
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Defenseman Chris Bigras in the opening-night mix for the Avalanche
A big moment could await Chris Bigras, the young Avalanche defenseman who is expected to make the opening-night roster. Veteran defenseman Jared Cowen was released from his professional tryout contract Wednesday and Bigras, 22, appears to have separated himself from at least two other young defensemen in the quest to complete Colorado’s seven- or eight-man corps. In the Avs’ final preseason game Thursday in Las Vegas, Bigras will be paired with Tyson Barrie against the expansion Golden Knights at the T-Mobile Arena. Typically, the lineup from the last preseason game features the team’s top players, by position, and Bigras is believed to have a leg up on defensemen Duncan Siemens, 24, and Andrei Mironov, 23, who both will be scratched Thursday. “I’m confident in my game right now. I’m feeling good out there,” Bigras said after practice Wednesday, when he partnered with Barrie and played with others on the power play. “I would love to make the team out of camp. I would love nothing more than that. I’ve worked really hard this summer towards that goal.” Anton Lindholm, 22, is the fourth young defenseman in the opening-night mix, and he will partner with Erik Johnson in Las Vegas. Colorado’s other pairing will be Nikita Zadorov with David Warsofsky, coach Jared Bednar said, and veteran Mark Barbario will be scratched along with Siemens and Mironov. The Avs are carrying 28 players and must get down to 23 by Tuesday. Forwards Joe Colborne (back) and A.J. Greer (concussion) and defenseman Sergei Boikov (shoulder) are expected to begin the season on injured reserve. Bigras, chosen with the 32nd pick in the 2013 draft, is in his fifth Avalanche training camp. He never previously made it to the last preseason game in Las Vegas. “That was a goal of mine, to play in this game,” Bigras said. Related ArticlesSeptember 27, 2017 Lunch Special: Colorado Avalanche live chat with Mike Chambers September 26, 2017 Avalanche reassigns three players, trims roster to 29 September 25, 2017 Broncos’ Vance Joseph: “Politics and football don’t mix in my opinion” September 25, 2017 Avalanche reassigns 13 players, now carrying 32 September 24, 2017 Tyson Jost makes preseason debut for the Avalanche Bedar had this to say about Bigras: “For me, his play has gotten better and better as camp has gone on.” Barrie, a right-handed shot, enjoys working with the left-handed Bigras, who played 31 games for the Avalanche in 2015-16 before a concussion held him back for long stretches last season. “Biggie’s been great this camp,” Barrie said. “I know last year he had some injury trouble, which was frustrating for him. The year before that, when he was up with us, I thought he played really well. He’s a great guy and a really hard worker. I think he’s done a great job to get where he is.” Footnotes. Goalie Jonathan Bernier (groin) did not practice Wednesday and is day-to-day, Bednar said. Colborne skated briefly with the team but also won’t travel to Las Vegas. … The lines Thursday will feature Nathan MacKinnon centering Sven Andrighetto and Mikko Rantanen; Matt Duchene between Nail Yakupov and Alex Kerfoot; T.J. Compher with Gabe Landeskog and Colin Wilson; and wingers Matt Nieto and Blake Comeau with center Tyson Jost. The healthy scratches at forward will be Gabriel Bourque and Carl Soderberg. [...]
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Avalanche reassigns three players, trims roster to 29
The Avalanche reassigned young centers Reid Petryk and Dominic Toninato to San Antonio of the American Hockey League and returned defenseman Conor Timmins to his junior team in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, on Tuesday. Colorado is now down to 29 players — 16 forwards, 11 defensemen and two goalies — and must get down to 23 in the week leading into its Oct. 5 opener at the New York Rangers. The Avs, who improved to 3-2 in the preseason with a 4-2 victory Monday night at Dallas, are off Tuesday. They will practice Wednesday and conclude the preseason Thursday in Las Vegas against the expansion Golden Knights. [...]
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Avalanche reassigns 13 players, now carrying 32
The Avalanche reassigned 13 players to its American Hockey League affiliate in San Antonio on Monday morning, trimming the preseason roster to 32 players. Colorado must get down to 23 players by opening night Oct. 5. The only moderately surprising demotion Monday was forward Rocco Grimaldi, who scored a goal in Sunday’s 5-1 preseason victory over visiting Minnesota. The Avs also sent young goalie Spencer Martin to San Antonio, leaving veterans Semyon Varlamov and Jonathan Bernier to man the nets in the final two preseason games — Monday at Dallas and Thursday against the expansion Golden Knights in Las Vegas. To San Antonio: LW Andrew Agozzino, C Alex Belzile, G Joe Cannata, D Nolan De Jong, D Mason Geertsen, C Felix Girard, D Jesse Graham, RW Rocco Grimaldi, G Spencer Martin, LW Brendan Ranford, LW Brady Shaw, LW Shawn St-Amant, RW Trent Vogelhuber. [...]
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Pittsburgh Penguins announce they will attend White House Stanley Cup celebration
While the sports world focused Sunday on the NFL and its reaction to recent statements by President Donald Trump, the Pittsburgh Penguins inserted themselves into the sporting world’s ongoing political discussion by issuing a statement that the team would visit the White House as part of their Stanley Cup celebration. The Penguins, on the heels of their second consecutive Stanley Cup win this past June, still plan to visit Trump, though a date has not yet been confirmed. The Penguins released the statement at 8:45 a.m. on Sunday, right as a handful of professional athletes and owners continue to denounce recent comments and tweets Trump has issued regarding the NFL, national anthem protests and Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry’s now-rescinded invitation to visit the White House with his team. “The Pittsburgh Penguins respect the institution of the Office of the President, and the long tradition of championship teams visiting the White House,” the Penguins’ statement reads. “We attended White House ceremonies after previous championships – touring the historic building and visiting briefly with Presidents George H.W. Bush and Barack Obama – and have accepted an invitation to attend again this year. “Any agreement or disagreement with a president’s politics, policies or agenda can be expressed in other ways. However, we very much respect the rights of other individuals and groups to express themselves as they see fit.” Related ArticlesSeptember 20, 2017 NHL hoping to make inroads in China with preseason games September 19, 2017 Devils’ Brian Boyle diagnosed with cancer, expects to keep playing September 18, 2017 As No. 1 pick Nico Hischier debuts, Switzerland’s NHL influence continues to climb September 13, 2017 Avalanche reverts to #WhyNotUs theme from 2013-14 September 7, 2017 Avalanche’s Mikko Rantanen, 20, already an established NHL player After Curry indicated he would not go to the White House, Trump responded with this tweet on Saturday morning: “Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team. Stephen Curry is hesitating, therefore invitation is withdrawn!” This was amid a flurry of tweets regarding the sporting world’s intersection with political and social issues, and Trump continued Sunday morning by tweeting, “If NFL fans refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our Flag & Country, you will see change take place fast. Fire or suspend!” This makes the timing of the Penguins’ statement curious, as NFL players and coaches have spent Sunday contesting Trump’s recent comments and sharing messages of unity. Sunday started with many players demonstrating during the national anthem ahead of the Ravens-Jaguars game in London, with players kneeling or linking arms on both sidelines. There is expected to be a major increase in national anthem demonstrations as nine more games kick off at 11 a.m. Athletic protests of current social and political issues have mostly been concentrated in the NFL and NBA across the last two years. The Warriors have responded to Trump’s tweet about Curry by saying they will not be attending the White House at all. The Penguins, however, followed that by saying they have every intention to. [...]
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Tyson Jost makes preseason debut for the Avalanche
A year ago in the preseason, the Avalanche lost its top prospect to an ankle injury. Mikko Rantanen, selected with the 10th pick of the 2015 draft, went down during a rookie showcase game in Westminster. This month, Colorado’s newest top prospect, Tyson Jost — the No. 10 selection of the 2016 draft — injured his groin at a rookie showcase in San Jose, Calif. It was feared Jost, 19, would miss the entire preseason, as Rantanen did the year before. Fear not, Avalanche fans. Jost made his preseason debut Sunday against the Minnesota Wild at the Pepsi Center. He centered wingers Rocco Grimaldi and Andrew Agozzino, assisted on Grimaldi’s goal, and proclaimed himself 100 percent healthy after Colorado’s 5-1 victory. “We wanted to be smart about it,” Jost said of his injury. “I was itching to get back on the ice, and not miss training camp. I was knocking down their door every morning, trying to convince them to let me out. But that’s one thing I have to learn about being a pro — it’s a long season. They did a great job with it, and I’m happy to get back on the ice.” Related ArticlesSeptember 23, 2017 Avalanche fall to 1-2 in preseason after loss to Wild September 23, 2017 Nail Yakupov hopes to resurrect once-promising career with the Avalanche September 22, 2017 Avalanche tough guy A.J. Greer says his nastiness comes naturally September 21, 2017 Russian Nikita Zadorov finally reports to Avalanche camp September 20, 2017 David Warsofsky eyeing spot on Avalanche’s blue line Forward Colin Wilson, who was acquired from Nashville in an offseason trade, also made his preseason debut. Wilson began training camp skating on his own, and was in a orange hands-off jersey with the team last week. Center Nathan MacKinnon had a big game for the Avs, scoring two power-play goals in the third period from the left circle. Forwards J.T. Compher and Grimaldi scored goals to erase Minnesota’s 1-0 lead and Rantanen scored early in the third period to make it 3-1. MacKinnon assisted on Rantanen’s goal. Goalie Semyon Varlamov played the entire game for the Avs, who fell 2-1 in Minnesota on Saturday night with a different lineup. Footnote. The Avalanche (2-2 preseason) concludes its exhibition schedule this week with games Monday at Dallas and Thursday in Las Vegas. The regular-season opener is Oct. 5 against the Rangers in New York. [...]
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Nail Yakupov hopes to resurrect once-promising career with the Avalanche
Newcomer Nail Yakupov and many of his Avalanche teammates are kindred spirits when it comes to resurrecting a young career. Yakupov, the No. 1 pick in the 2012 draft, hasn’t done anything spectacular since leading the Edmonton Oilers with 17 goals in the lockout-shortened 48-game season of 2012-13. And the Avs? Well, they have a handful of high-profile 20-somethings coming off the worst year of their careers. Matt Duchene, Nathan MacKinnon and Gabe Landeskog — top-three overall draft picks themselves — are hoping to put the recent past behind them. “Every year is important for everyone in this locker room,” Yakupov said. “This team, they didn’t have a good year last year. And me?  I wasn’t really happy about my year as well. Now we move forward and just try to have fun and play the game.” The Russian-born Yakupov, who turns 24 on Oct. 6, was traded from Edmonton to the St. Louis Blues just before last season began. He played in just 40 games and had only three goals for the Blues. Yakupov became a free agent July 1 and agreed to terms with the Avalanche on July 4 to a modest one-year, $875,000 contract. He was making $2.5 million with the Oilers/Blues. “They had really good interest in me,” Yakupov said of the Avs, who finished with a league-low and club-record worst 48 points last season. “I talked to them a few times and the agents were working on it. I’m happy. I want to be here. I know a few of the guys already and it’s a good group.” Yakupov mostly has been playing left wing on a line with Duchene, the center, and rookie Alex Kerfoot. “That line has been really good in camp. All three of those guys,” Avs coach Jared Bednar said. “I think they’ve found a little chemistry there. Hopefully that will continue and get better and better.” When asked if he thinks Yakupov will be used in a top-six forward role to begin the season, Bednar quickly said: “Yes.” Related ArticlesSeptember 23, 2017 Avalanche fall to 1-2 in preseason after loss to Wild September 22, 2017 Avalanche tough guy A.J. Greer says his nastiness comes naturally September 21, 2017 Russian Nikita Zadorov finally reports to Avalanche camp September 20, 2017 David Warsofsky eyeing spot on Avalanche’s blue line September 20, 2017 Lunch Special: Colorado Avalanche live chat with Mike Chambers “There’s no doubt that he’s talented. There’s no doubt he has a lot of skill,” Landeskog said of Yakupov. “He had some injuries, some tough seasons, but we’re happy that he’s here. What I’ve seen from him so far, I’m really impressed.” Yakupov’s career statistics Season Team GP Goals Assists Pts. 2012-13 Edmonton Oilers 48 17 14 31 (Lockout-shortened season) 2013-14 Edmonton Oilers 63 11 13 24 2014-15 Edmonton Oilers 81 14 19 33 2015-16 Edmonton Oilers 60 8 15 23 – 2016-17 St. Louis Blues 40 3 6 9 14 NHL Totals 292 53 67 120 [...]
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Avalanche fall to 1-2 in preseason after loss to Wild
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Devan Dubnyk stopped 28 shots to lead the Minnesota Wild to a 2-1 preseason win over the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday. Mikael Granlund scored and assisted on Matt Dumba’s winning goal early in the second period for the Wild. Related ArticlesSeptember 23, 2017 Nail Yakupov hopes to resurrect once-promising career with the Avalanche September 22, 2017 Avalanche tough guy A.J. Greer says his nastiness comes naturally September 21, 2017 Russian Nikita Zadorov finally reports to Avalanche camp September 20, 2017 David Warsofsky eyeing spot on Avalanche’s blue line September 20, 2017 Lunch Special: Colorado Avalanche live chat with Mike Chambers Andrew Agozzino scored for the Avalanche, and Jonathan Bernier had 22 saves. Granlund’s goal on a wrist shot at 7:48 of the first period put Minnesota ahead 1-0, and Dumba’s slap shot doubled the lead 2 1/2 minutes into the second. Both scores came on the power play. Agozzino pulled the Avalanche within one a little more than 2 minutes later. Minnesota finished 2 for 5 with the man-advantage, and Colorado was 0 for 8. [...]
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