Upgrade Your Fandom

Join the Ultimate DNVR Sports Community!

Avalanche signs forward Matt Calvert

AJ Haefele Avatar
July 1, 2018

The Colorado Avalanche continued their dip into the opening hours of NHL free agency with the signing of former Columbus Blue Jackets forward Matt Calvert. The deal is a three-year pact worth $2.8 million annually, $8.4 million total.

The 28-year-old Calvert tied his career high in points last year with a 24-point (9g, 15a) season in just 69 games played. Calvert also chipped in four points (3g, 1a) in six playoff games. Despite the nice season, Calvert essentially found himself the victim of a numbers game in Columbus as a grip of talented young forwards graduated to the NHL and made him too expensive on the open market. For a player who has never played 80 games in a season, and just 70 once, Calvert’s scoring rates are fairly impressive.

There’s obviously an injury history there as last year’s 69 games was the second highest of his career but Colorado was looking to get a little younger and the Avalanche allowing the 32-year-old Blake Comeau to leave via free agency (he signed with Dallas today) meant Calvert was the younger replacement.

It’s fair to call Colorado’s signing of Calvert to a three-year deal questionable as his fancy stats certainly aren’t anything special and the one place Colorado had depth was in the bottom six of its forward corps. Calvert is a proven penalty killer and speed demon, however, so he will fit Colorado’s identity perfectly and he’s a pure heart and soul guy who gives maximum effort on every shift. That kind of energizer bunny mentality will endear him immediately to his new teammates here in Denver.

While Calvert could be seen as a replacement for Comeau, the real Comeau replacement could end up being J.T. Compher while Calvert could end up being an upgrade over Gabriel Bourque. It will be interesting to see how he is ultimately utilized because last year head coach Jared Bednar ended up using his defensive stopper line of Comeau, Carl Soderberg, and Matt Nieto as their de facto second line. It turned into a bit of a crutch for Bednar last year and the goal moving forward is to develop more of a normal scoring-oriented second line and let the line with heavy defensive matchups turn back into a depth line. Calvert should be part of a bottom six that sees more defensive deployment than it did last season.

Below are some fancy stats for Calvert:

Scroll to next article

Don't like ads?
Don't like ads?
Don't like ads?