Originally posted on Mile High Sports  |  Last updated 6/9/14

OTTAWA - SEPTEMBER 19: Andre Benoit #45 of the Montreal Canadiens skates to the net against Nick Foligno #71 of the Ottawa Senators battles during a preseason game at Scotiabank Place on September 19, 2009 in Ottawa, Canada. The Ottawa Senators defeated the Montreal Canadiens 6-1. (Photo by Phillip MacCallum/Getty Images)
There’s less than a month until NHL free agency day and the Colorado Avalanche, like many teams across North America, have some important decisions to make regarding the future of the franchise. On the tail end of a rebuild, with light brightening at the end of a gloomy tunnel, the Avalanche must do two things in order to remain headed in the right direction. First, the club must secure the future. That means locking down key pieces of talent, like signing the 2012 draft class to entry-level contracts, which the organization has done. It also means taking a look at the developmental ceiling of guys like Tyson Barrie, Jamie McGinn, Stefan Elliott, Joey Hishon, Paul Carey, Kent Patterson, and Kieran Millan. Where are these guys headed? Are they trending in the right direction? Do they deserve extensions? For Tyson Barrie, this is an obvious decision. He needs to be given enough of a financial leash to continue veering upward after showing—two years in a row—that he’s putting in the wo...
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Best of Yardbarker: Don't sleep on the Stanley Cup Playoffs

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