Home Sports Avs lock up defenseman Toews with 7-year deal

Avs lock up defenseman Toews with 7-year deal

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Avs lock up defenseman Toews with 7-year deal

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One of the major concerns facing the Colorado Avalanche this season was answered within a matter of days with the team announcing Friday they re-signed defenseman Devon Toews to a seven-year contract.

Finding a new deal for Toews, who will earn $7.25 million annually starting next season, was one of the most important items facing the team with the 29-year-old entering the final year of his contract.

Re-signing Toews accomplishes a number of items. Among the most notable is the fact that the extension now ensures the Avs will keep their top defensive pairing of Toews and 2022 Norris Trophy winner Cale Makar together for at least three more seasons.

“Getting a deal done with Devon at the start of the season was a priority for us,” Avalanche general manager Chris MacFarland said in a statement. “He has emerged as one of the best defensemen in the NHL and is a huge part of the core of this team.”

This current iteration of the Avalanche has also seen a number of players come to the club and have some of the strongest years of their careers. That’s held true for Toews, who was traded to the Avs in 2020 for a pair of second-round picks which helped alleviate what was then a salary cap crunch for the New York Islanders.

He averaged 0.40 points per game in his two seasons with the Isles before he was traded to the Avs where he has since averaged 0.70 points in 200 games. His offensive production has also been matched by his defensive output which has led to Toews being used in practically every situation from 5-on-5 play to the penalty kill to the power play in that time.

It’s also another reason why Toews has finished in the top 15 of Norris Trophy voting in each of his first three seasons with the Avalanche.

Toews’ ability to log heavy minutes in a number of different situations also played a role in why his partnership with Makar has led to them being in the discussion for what could be the strongest defensive pairing in the NHL.

“I couldn’t be more excited to remain with the Avalanche and continue to build upon what we’ve accomplished so far,” Toews said in a statement. “I’d like to thank the Kroenke family, Joe Sakic, Chris MacFarland and the coaching staff for their trust and belief in me.”

Finding new ground on a contract now means Toews joins a group of nine players that is led by Nathan MacKinnon and Makar of Avalanche players who have more than three years left on their current contract. Four members of that group also include fellow defensemen such as Samuel Girard and Josh Manson.

Although the Avs have a number of players under contract, it does not mean they don’t have other financial considerations to make in the coming months. CapFriendly projects that the Avs will have more than $2.6 million available in cap space ahead of an offseason that has seven players who are slated to be unrestricted free agents and another three players who are set to become pending restricted free agents.

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