After a disappointing season, the Colorado Avalanche have the pieces in place for an exciting offseason. The Avalanche only have 12 players currently signed to contracts, and over $30 million in cap space available to spend.
They also have the second overall selection in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, taking place in late June.
Colorado added another piece to the puzzle by announcing that veteran forward Milan Hejduk has decided to return for the 2011-2012 season. Hejduk had been considering retirement, but his successful 2010-2011 season (he scored 22 goals) convinced him that he can stay healthy for another year. He is currently tied with Joe Sakic for a franchise record with 11 straight 20+ goal season.
According to Adrian Dater of the Denver Post, Hejduk has signed a contract rated at $2.6 million this next season, with incentives that can match his $3 million salary from last year. This is a bargain rate for a player of Hejduk's caliber.