NHL Free Agency News: Josh Manson re-signs with the Avalanche

Josh Manson, whom the Colorado Avalanche acquired at the trade deadline for defensive prospect Drew Helleson and a second-round pick, has resigned in Colorado. The contract is for 4 years and will pay him an average annual value of $4.5 million per year, which was a tad bit higher than expectations.

Manson also has a no-trade clause through the first two years of the contract and a limited no-trade clause for the last two years.

This is a theme with the Avalanche off-season. If it takes a few hundred thousand dollars extra to keep players like Josh Manson and Andrew Cogliano off the free agent market, they won’t hesitate to make a slightly larger offer than is expected. Non-tendering Nicolas Aube-Kubel saved them some money in this regard, and Joe Sakic and company clearly believe that players like Manson, Valeri Nichushkin, and Andrew Cogliano would have received larger offers than expected had they reached the free agent market.

According to Cap Friendly, Colorado now has $9.1 million dollars in cap space to work with. Given that the expectations for Artturi Lehkonen’s contract extension are about $5 million per year, that leaves the Avs with roughly $4 million in cap space after signing Josh Manson. Barring a trade of someone like Eric Johnson (making $6 million this year), this means that Nazem Kadri and Andre Burakovsky are almost certainly moving on, as they can command a higher salary than what the Avalanche have remaining in cap space.

Regardless, the Avalanche have now plugged their largest hole on defense, and they will go into next year with the deepest defensive corps in the league with Cale Makar, Devon Toews, Bowen Byram, Samuel Girard, Josh Manson, and Eric Johnson.

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