The Colorado Avalanche were the NHL’s worst team last season, collecting just 48 total points to finish 21 points behind their next closest competitor at the bottom of the standings. To be blunt, they were total garbage. Considering things can’t get much worse for the Avs, they seem like the perfect example of a team that needs a massive overhaul and a complete rebuild.
That rebuilding project should include a trade involving 26-year-old Matt Duchene, but with the 2017-18 season quickly approaching, the talented Duchene is still in Colorado.
Will the Avs make a move? Maybe, but Colorado GM Joe Sakic is practicing patience and has said that the market is currently pretty quiet on all sides in regards to Duchene.
Via the Denver Post, Sakic commented on the Duchene situation.
“I will be listening to offers. Right now it’s quiet on all fronts. But I’ll listen to offers on how we can get better. I’ll never name names but I’ll sit there and if something makes sense for the way we want to go, with our team, we’ll really look at that.”
The Duchene trade rumors were ferociously flying around earlier this summer, but they have quieted down considerably now that the new season is approaching. The Avs have been extremely patient, holding out for exactly the right package. As understandable as it might be for the Avs to wait and find a deal that fits them, they run the risk of delaying their rebuild even further by holding on to Duchene instead of moving him for a package of assets.
Duchene did have a pretty disappointing season last year, scoring 18 goals and 23 assists (41 points) in 77 games. Of course, those numbers are easy to forgive considering how well his team as a whole played last season. Statistically it was one of Duchene’s worst seasons since he entered the NHL back in 2009, but there’s no debate that he’s still an exciting, talented center a huge number of teams would love to have on their roster.
Barring some kind of surprise, a trade involving Duchene will probably still happen. It may just take longer than many predicted.