With some college hockey players, there is going to be a shred of uncertainty with their draft teams about whether or not that player will end up in their organization. Whether it’s Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes or Blake Wheeler, there are more than a handful of examples of prominent college players that ended up eschewing the team that drafted them for free agency once their NCAA careers had finished. It’s a part of the CBA and it will always be a legit worry for players that outperform their draft status while in college, and that’s the way it will continue to be even as most players end up signing with their draft teams as Notre Dame winger Anders Bjork did with the B’s a couple of months ago.
In the case of the Colorado Avalanche’s Tuesday signings, the most noteworthy name is one that wasn’t on the list. Defenseman Nikita Zadorov still needs a deal, which means there’s still at least some threat that he’d leave for the KHL. A little more than a week ago, reports surfaced that Zadorov may strike a deal with CSKA, although he’s willing to give the Avalanche until the end of the month to come up with a better deal.
VOORHEES, N.J. — At the junior level, scoring was second nature to Nicolas Aube-Kubel, like riding a bike after you figure out the balance aspect. Goals came in bunches and points piled up — that was his game and it came effortlessly at times, especially over his final two seasons with the QMJHL's Val-d'Or Foreurs, posting back-to-back campaigns of 38 markers and 80-plus assists. "Usually in junior, scoring was always coming naturally to me, having points and goals," he said last week at Flyers development camp. On the AHL ice last season, it was a whole new ballgame. For Aube-Kubel, Year 1 of pro hockey was a feeling-out process from start to finish. His prolific scoring didn't carry over much