Colorado Avalanche Vladislav Kamenev has Golden Opportunity

Vladislav Kamenev
Spread the love

There is a golden opportunity for Colorado Avalanche prospect Vladislav Kamenev. The former 2nd round pick has lost much of his lustre with season-ending injuries in consecutive seasons. He has been pushed down the depth chart and was a healthy scratch through Colorado’s first 11 games but is back on the ice. It’s time for Kamenev to produce.

Colorado Avalanche Vladislav Kamenev has Golden Opportunity

Kamenev entered this year as a spare forward thanks to Colorado’s acquisition of Pierre-Edouard Bellemare as its primary fourth-line centre. The steady veteran has been healthier than Kamenev and is off to a hot start to 2019-20. However, injuries to Gabriel Landeskog, Mikko Rantanen and Colin Wilson have shuffled the depth chart to such a degree that Kamenev is now a key part of the bottom-six. His first game of the season came last week against the Florida Panthers and had three shots in 9:54 of playing time.

There isn’t much history to use to project Kamenev’s future. Two goals and five points in just 29 NHL games is not a large enough sample. He was a somewhat average scorer in his earlier years; his best season in North America was with the Milwaukee Admirals in 2016-17 where he scored 51 points in 70 games. He projects as a fine top-nine forward but has to stay on the ice to have that chance.

Much of Kamenev’s early ice time has been spent next to Valeri Nichushkin and Jayson Megna. That trio won’t score much but they should form an effective shutdown unit if they can get tougher with the puck; both Kamenev and Nichushkin have very poor possession metrics through October. Colorado’s depth is still strong enough to stay in games but depth players like Kamenev have to do some work.

There is no timetable for Colorado’s stars to return to the ice so fans could see Kamenev a good amount. This season might be his best chance to prove he belongs on the team after this year. Kamenev will reach free agency this summer and the team has several centre prospects in the pipeline. Kamenev needs to seize this opportunity now if he wants to stay in Colorado.

Main Photo:

Embed from Getty Images