Today, Calvin Pickard became the latest player to sign, or re-sign with the Colorado Avalanche. The organization announced today that they have signed Pickard to a two-year contract, at an annual cap hit of $1 million, through the 2017-18 season.
This contract is considered a “bridge deal” meaning Pickard will still be a RFA at the end of this new contract.
Pickard was Colorado’s second draft choice in 2010, going 49th overall. Before playing for the Monsters, Rampage, and now the Avalanche, Pickard played a considerable amount in juniors. Playing for the Seattle Thunderbirds of the WHL, he finished his four years there as the WHL’s all-time leader in minutes-played(14,025) and saves(7,727).
He saw a ton of action on a not so great Thunderbirds team during those years, but now it’s no doubt paid off in spades for Pickard, the Avalanche and Canada.
In 36 NHL games over two years for the Avalanche, Pickard has a .927 save percentage and 2.46 goals against average. Giving him some of the very best numbers in the category that is goalies of the future.
The young and promising goaltender just finished a nice IIHF tournament with Team Canada, helping the team to capture gold along with Cam Talbot in Russia. Though Talbot got most of the starts, Pickard played just as well, allowing just the one goal in two games, along with a .971 save percentage.
A performance that no question puts him firmly into the minds of Team Canada moving forward.
Going into next season, Colorado will have two great goalies to work with in Semyon Varlamov and Pickard. You can’t ask for a much better tandem really (when Varlamov is on his game that is). Varlamov must be at his very best in order to keep hold of that number one goaltender title.
Pickard could easily outplay Varly for the spot, or the Avalanche could go with both, a 1A 1B situation, which sounds like the best option, at least right now. He’s a keeper (no pun intended) for sure, and one who is making incredible strides in his game.
— Colorado Avalanche (@Avalanche) July 5, 2016
— Calvin Pickard (@cpickard1) July 5, 2016
Here’s a trip down memory lane to finish it off –
Sebastian Noble is currently in his third year with The Hockey Writers covering the Colorado Avalanche and Florida Panthers. Liverpool, England, and of course Colorado Avalanche & Florida Panthers supporter. You can follow him on Twitter @SebastianHNoble