The Colorado Avalanche signed goaltender Philipp Grubauer to a three-year contract and put defenseman Brooks Orpik on buyout waivers the day after acquiring them from the Washington Capitals.
One person with knowledge of the move said the Avalanche signed Grubauer to a $10 million contract. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been announced.
Another person said Colorado put Orpik on unconditional waivers with the purposes of buying out the final year of his contract. The person also spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the team didn’t announce the move.
Grubauer P.J. Hall Youth Jersey , 26, will split time with Semyon Varlamov in net this season and could take over as Colorado’s No. 1 goalie in 2019-20. He’ll count $3.3 million against the salary cap the next three years.
”We all feel that he’s ready to take the next step and become a No. 1,” Colorado GM Joe Sakic said. ”We’re excited to have two No. 1 goalies.”
Assuming Orpik clears waivers, Colorado can buy him out Sunday, less than 48 hours after trading for him.
Sakic told Orpik after trading for him that the team planned to explore a trade or buy out the 37-year-old. Sakic took on Orpik’s $5.5 million salary in the trade to get Grubauer without giving up more than a second-round pick.
”I owed him the respect to let him know that the plan is to buy him out and let him be a free agent,” Sakic said. ”I’m sure he’ll have a lot of teams that’ll want to add him to their group.”
Capitals GM Brian MacLellan said Friday night he was open to bringing Orpik back if the price was right. Orpik was a respected leader on Washington’s Stanley Cup-winning team.
AP Hockey Writer John Wawrow contributed to this report.
During his first two seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, 2015 first-round pick Nelson Agholor was widely viewed as a bust. He struggled with drops and poor route running and only had 648 receiving yards across 28 games.Everything changed last season, though.As second-year quarterback Carson Wentz broke out, so did Agholor. The USC product racked up more receiving yards (768) than he had in his previous two seasons combined Josh Rosen Cardinals Jersey , and he became both a downfield threat and a top scoring option.Agholor finished the year with a career-high 12.4 yards per reception and eight touchdowns. He added another 167 receiving yards on 15 catches during Philadelphia's postseason run.Not only is Agholor no longer a punch line, but he's becoming the budding star of Philadelphia's receiving corps. If he continues to improve like he did between 2016 and 2017, he should be in store for a 1,000-yard season and a potential Pro Bowl campaign.Carolina Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey6 of 10Cindy Ord/Getty ImagesWhile No. 8 overall pick Christian McCaffrey wasn't viewed as a rookie bust last season, fellow first-year backs Leonard Founette and Alvin Kamara largely overshadowed him. However, the Stanford product was still an important piece of Carolina's offense.Though McCaffrey rushed for just 435 yards and averaged 3.7 yards per carry, he also added an impressive 80 receptions for 651 yards. He scored seven combined rushing and receiving touchdowns.This season, McCaffrey could continue to be a valuable receiving weapon while also increasing his ground production. He was sharing time in the backfield with Jonathan Stewart, who is now with the New York Giants. McCaffrey will be sharing the backfield again this season John Ross Jersey , as Carolina signed running back C.J. Anderson on Monday, but he should be able to carve out a larger role.It appears as though McCaffrey has added bulk this offseason, at least based on hype-inducing social media posts like this one. If he is bigger and stronger, he should have an easier time breaking tackles and increasing his efficiency as a runner.If McCaffrey can boost his rushing production and continue to be a big-time receiving threat, he's going to force his way into the spotlight.聽Don't be surprised if he's the one casting a shadow over other young backs in 2018.Cincinnati Bengals CB William Jackson III7 of 10Frank Victores/Associated PressBengals cornerback William Jackson III didn't play at all as a rookie in 2016, as he suffered a torn pectoral muscle and was placed on injured reserve in early September. But when he got on the field in 2017, he was the epitome of a star defender.Jackson appeared in 15 games and made five starts. He amassed 27 tackles, returned one interception for a touchdown and allowed an NFL-low 34.9 percent of passes thrown against him to be completed, according to Pro Football Focus."He is a good kid and is going to be a great pro鈥攍ikely an All-Pro for a long time Bradley Chubb Broncos Jersey ," Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said of Jackson, per Jim Owczarski of the Cincinnati Enquirer. "But he's still grasping it."With Adam Jones out in Cincinnati, expect Jackson to be a full-time starter in 2018 and one of the league's top defenders sooner than later.Cleveland Browns RB Duke Johnson8 of 10Kirk Irwin/Getty ImagesCleveland running back Duke Johnson is entering the final year of his rookie deal, which means he's looking at a hefty payday in the near future and plenty of time under the spotlight in 2018. The Browns will be scrutinizing him to determine whether they should retain him鈥攖hey added both Carlos Hyde and Nick Chubb this offseason鈥攚hile other teams will be trying to decide if he should be a free-agency target.Though the former Miami Hurricane is a shifty and efficient runner鈥攈e's averaged 4.2 yards per carry throughout his three-year career鈥攈e does the most damage as a pass-catcher. He's caught at least 50 passes in each of his first three seasons and had 74 receptions last season.So far in his NFL career, Johnson has produced 1,085 yards rushing, 1,741 yards receiving and 10 combined touchdowns.Johnson had more than 1,000 combined rushing and receiving yards last season Authentic Nick Chubb Jersey , and he could do so again in 2018 even with Hyde and Chubb sharing the backfield. He'll be a major weapon in passing situations, and receivers like Jarvis Landry and Josh Gordon are going to pull attention away from him.Johnson has yet to earn a Pro Bowl nod, but that could change in the near future, especially if he eventually lands in a different situation with a more significant role.Panthers WR Devin Funchess9 of 10Scott Cunningham/Getty ImagesChristian McCaffrey isn't the only Panthers offensive player poised to become a legitimate star in 2018.While wide receiver Devin Funchess was a聽role player in his first two seasons, he became Cam Newton's go-to option last season after the departure of Kelvin Benjamin. Though a shoulder injury slowed him late in the season, Funchess still finished with a career-high 840 yards and eight touchdowns.He could be even more productive in 2018, especially if he's healthy throughout the entire season.Carolina brought in new receiving pieces to help upgrade its passing attack. Veteran speedster Torrey Smith will help stretch the field, and the Panthers drafted Maryland receiver D.J. Moore in the first round because of his potential to develop into a No. 1 receiver.While Moore could become Newton's new favorite target over time, Funchess should maintain that role in 2018 due to familiarity. Both Moore and Smith will take defensive attention away from Funchess Cheap Josh Allen Jersey , giving him more opportunities to make big plays.Funchess is also entering a contract year, which should help from a motivation standpoint. Expect him to make the most of the 2018 season and to become a full-fledged star in the process.Los Angeles Chargers TE Hunter Henry10 of 10Sean M. Haffey/Getty ImagesFollowing in the footsteps of a franchise legend is never easy, but it sometimes leads to the emergence of a new bona fide star. I.