Avalanche bringing back Drouin on 1-year deal

Sports

Jonathan Drouin is returning to the Colorado Avalanche on a one-year deal, it was announced Monday.

The deal is for $2.5 million, a source told ESPN.

Drouin signed a one-year deal last season worth $825,000 with the belief that reuniting with his former Halifax Mooseheads teammate Nathan MacKinnon could see him become a significant contributor as the Avalanche sought their second Stanley Cup since 2022.

It led to Drouin following the path of previous players who found refuge in Denver by having the strongest offensive season of his career. The 29-year-old scored 19 goals and finished with a personal-best 56 points in 79 games after having eight goals and 49 points in his previous two seasons combined.

What he accomplished with the Avalanche led to questions about Drouin’s future and whether it would be in Denver. The Avalanche had other financial considerations to make, which included re-signing restricted free agent second-line center Casey Mittelstadt to a three-year extension worth $5.75 million annually.

That deal left the Avs with $10.487 million in projected cap space and the belief that Drouin could go elsewhere because he might be too expensive for a roster in need of team-friendly contracts. Drouin, however, returned for less than what he could have potentially made with another team.

The Avalanche also announced they re-signed forward Joel Kiviranta to a one-year contract. The deal is for $775,000, a source told ESPN. Kiviranta played 56 games for the Avs in a bottom-six role last season.

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