LOVELAND, Colo. – The AHL’s Colorado Eagles announced on Saturday that they had signed four Colorado Avalanche draft picks from the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) to Amateur Tryout Agreements (ATO): goaltender Trent Miner and forwards Luka Burzan, Jean-Luc Foudy, and Sasha Mutala.
The Eagles had to take some quick action after its NHL parent club placed the maximum amount of six players onto its taxi squad. With four forwards — Shane Bowers, Martin Kaut, Logan O’Connor, and Kiefer Sherwood — and goaltender Hunter Miska being plucked from the Eagles for the potential of emergency fill-ins, the Avs’ AHL affiliate didn’t want to take any chances heading into the 2021 regular season.
Here’s some quick stats and information on these four new Eagles signings.
Miner, like Avalanche defensive prospect Bowen Byram, played his major juniors career with the Vancouver Giants of the Western Hockey League (WHL). The 19-year-old netminder started parts of three seasons for the Giants, accumulating a 41-20-5 record with four shutouts in 69 games played and posting a 2.56 goals against average with a .909 save percentage. He was drafted by the Avalanche in the seventh round, #202 overall in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft.
A left-handed centerman, the 21-year-old Burzan has played in parts of five seasons in the WHL between the Moose Jaw Warriors and the Brandon Wheat Kings. Burzan’s best season was in 2018-19 –his first full year with the Wheat Kings — where he posted 78 points (40G + 38A) in 68 games. Drafted by the Avalanche in the sixth round, #171 overall in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, Burzan is serviceable as a right winger, as well.
After only playing two seasons with the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), the 18-year-old Foudy gets a chance to showcase his talents for the Eagles at center. According to Dobber Prospects’ Hayden Soboleski, Foudy is the third-best centerman amongst Avalanche prospects behind Alex Newhook and Shane Bowers. The 5’11”, 177-pound forward also ranked 12th overall amongst Colorado’s prospects in regards to upside and NHL likelihood.
With 92 points over 122 games played, Foudy has compiled a two-season average of almost 0.75 points per game. He was drafted by the Avalanche in the third round, #75 overall in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft.
After three full seasons playing for the WHL’s Tri-City Americans, Mutala has exponentially improved his season points total from 26 to 41 to 67. With those 67 points (28G + 39A) over 62 games in 2019-20, he pushed over the point per game limit, sacrificing some discipline with 58 penalty minutes as opposed to 28 PIMs in both 2017-18 and 2018-19. Soboleski calls Mutala, “A shifty, high-volume shooter who can score in all situations” and gives him second-line potential in the NHL. The Avalanche drafted him in the fifth round, #140 overall in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft.