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Avalanche sign Andre Burakovsky, still have room for free agent splashes

Pierre McGuire, Bob McKenzie, Craig Button analyze the biggest storylines going into NHL free agency, including where Henrik Lundqvist and Alex Pietrangelo will end up.

As we wait to see if the Colorado Avalanche will land a big-name free agent like Taylor Hall or Alex Pietrangelo (or both?), they signed key RFA Andre Burakovsky. The Avalanche signed Burakovsky to a two-year deal reportedly worth $9.8 million (or $4.9M in AAV).

Avs GM Joe Sakic noted that “signing Andre was a priority for us this offseason.”

Avalanche sign Andre Burakovsky: two years, $9.8M

Over 58 regular-season games, Burakovsky scored 20 goals and 45 points. That would translate to about 64 points over a typical 82-game season.

Clearly, Burakovsky flourished while receiving opportunities in Colorado that he rarely enjoyed with the Capitals. After averaging 12:45 per game (including a career-low of 11:08 in 2018-19), Burakovsky received 15:12 TOI with the Avs.

Despite seeing his ice time dip to 13:27 per playoff contest, Burakovsky was even deadlier during the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs. The 25-year-old generated seven goals and 17 points over 15 games, converting on a whopping 29.2 percent of his shots on goal.

Apparently, opposing goalies might want to get used to that dangerous sniping:

Yes, the Avalanche are generating hype as a possible free agent destination. Most of all, Colorado’s exciting because of its young players, though. Maybe they can find more ways to get Burakovsky on the ice?

Speaking of free agents, signing Burakovsky leaves the Avalanche with almost $17.5M in cap space. While key RFAs remain (such as Ryan Graves and Valeri Nichushkin), Colorado remains in a position to make a splash or two.

We could learn as soon as Saturday if they actually make any free agent splashes.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.