The Colorado Avalanche have been a busy team already this summer in trying to maintain several key pieces of their roster, but it appears as if one young talent will be moving on from the Mile High City.
Forward Peter Mueller was left without a qualifying offer on Monday, which means his status will shift from restricted to an unrestricted free agent. He is free to sign with any team starting on July 1st.
When he was on the ice with the Avalanche, Mueller performed very well. After being traded from the Phoenix Coyotes in 2009, Mueller posted 20 points in 15 games. In 32 games with the club last season, he put up 16 points, including seven goals. But it’s that whole “when he was on the ice” thing, that has proven to be a problem with Mueller.
Since landing in Colorado, Mueller has had his issues with injuries. Those health problems have mainly been of the concussion variety, causing him to miss the entire 2010-2011 campaign and held him out of much of last season.
It’s those health issues that have left no surprise as to his lack of a qualifying offer. It is just a bit surprising, given the fact that he’s still one of the young talents in the game with plenty of potential, and that they’ve stuck it out with him the past two seasons, but it shouldn’t really come as a surprise to many.
Mueller is the type of guy you can’t help but root for. He’s had setback after setback so early on his career, and will now look to catch on with a club that will give him a chance, despite his checkered injury history.
And there should be interest out there on the market, even with his history of concussions and other various injuries. He’s a versatile forward with plenty of offensive skill and could end up being worth the risk for a team out there that is willing to take a chance on him. I wouldn’t bet on him staying out on the market too long past July 1st.