The National Hockey League’s Colorado Avalanche and American Hockey League’s Lake Erie Monsters have agreed to a multi-year extension to their current agreement, it was announced today.
The 2010-11 season marks the fourth in which the Monsters have served as the top affiliate for Colorado. Since the agreement began in 2007-08, a total of 22 players have made their NHL debut with the Avs after beginning the season with Lake Erie.
After months of speculation that the Avs and Monsters would go their separate ways, this announcement comes as a bit of a surprise. Yet, it was one that yours truly wanted. Still, the Avalanche need to do a better job supplying the Monsters with talent. That includes more than just future NHL players, but surrounding those players with quality AHL veterans.
Yes, the primary purpose of an affiliate is to develop players for the next level, but the teams and fans also want to win.