Avalanche

BSN Avalanche Mailbag: Should Avs be buyers at trade deadline?

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Timothy J. Ludwig, USA Today

What better opportunity to clean out the Mailbag than right here, in the middle of the Avs' bye week. How is everybody feeling out there, with no Avs hockey all week? I hope you've used the time well, to say hello to the family again or catch up on your reading or painting or macrame.

What have I done during the break? One thing I'm still trying to get done is to find a place that can turn the BRAKE warning light off on my car dashboard, so that the people at the emissions place can run their tests like they told me they couldn't with the light on. Visits to a couple of auto shops so far have yet to bear fruit in accomplishing this task, and I need to get new tags put on the car by Jan. 30. After that, I'd be driving in violation of the law. By the way, I've gotten recent brake jobs. No problem with the brakes. It's just the damn sensor light won't turn off.

OK, let's get to some questions and, as always, thanks for reading and writing in.

Well, gman96, here's one thing to set your mind at ease: There is NO way Joe Sakic is going to deal any good young prospects at the deadline for short-term veteran rental help. Zero, zip, zilch, nada. These are not the 1996-2006 Avs that did a lot of that under Pierre Lacroix. There was vindication for that philosophy, too, in the form of those two Stanley Cup banners you see hanging from the rafters of the Pepsi Center.

The Avs are currently the third-youngest team in the league, at 25.6 years on average, behind only Columbus and Arizona. Sakic is not going to suddenly want an older, more expensive team come Feb. 26, the date for the NHL trade deadline this year. And, well he shouldn't. Things are going just fine with the development curve right now for this team, and some kind of pending-UFA, big-name guy in exchange for prospects/picks would almost certainly end in disaster. This team is not one player away, a la 2000/01 (Ray Bourque, Rob Blake) or 1996 (Patrick Roy).

To quote George H.W. Bush: Stay the course. Keep drafting and developing and building from within. The organic approach is what's working best for this team, and it should - and will, I expect - stay that way. As for Barrie, no, I don't deal him this year if I'm Sakic. Now, Barrie could be an expendable trade chip this summer or next year. But until prospects Cale Makar, Connor Timmins and, to a lesser extent, Sam Girard, prove themselves, Barrie is still quite a valuable player on this team and he's still young.



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