Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Something's amiss in Denver

Some interesting goaltending movement in Colorado, with rookie netminder Vitaly 'Mullet-man' Kolesnik being recalled from the Lowell Lock Monsters of the AHL today:
The Avalanche goalie picture is a mess right so let's explain: Vitaly Kolesnik was recalled despite the fact that neither David Aebischer nor Peter Budaj is injured. Rumors out of Colorado indicate that the Avs are either intending on making a trade — possibly for Roberto Luongo of Florida, or they just want to mentally challenge Aebischer or Budaj.

To that end, when coach Joel Quenneville was asked who was going to start tonight, he avoided answering the question by simply saying that the Avs would announce their goalie plans sometime today. In addition, he was quoted as saying "We're going to announce that (today) just to change things up. We're looking for the goaltending to be better" which could be interpreted as a number of things.

The bottom line is that the Avs aren't happy with their goaltending picture and it's unknown which goalie will even start today.
Very, very interesting. Avalanche GM Pierre Lacroix is known for being able to wheel big deals that often benefit his club, and if he can find a way to wheel Aebischer right out of Denver (given the way he's played), I suspect he'll do just that. Depending on what they have to forfeit (likely one of their better defencemen and a scoring winger), Colorado could suddenly become very scary with an excellent goaltender between the pipes.

If I was Lacroix, one player I'd be moving is youngster Wojtek Wolski, whose value is as high as it will ever be after a successful mini-stint in the NHL to star the season. The thing is, I don't think he'll ever be a consistent offensive threat at that level, and with his defensive game as woeful as it is, well, he won't have a lot of value once teams see how good he actually is. That Wolski was left of Team Canada's selection camp for the World Juniors speaks to just how valuable hockey minds think he is.

Credit to HockeyInformer.com for the info (paragraph breaks are my own). More here from the Rocky Mountain News.

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