Grubauer “one-hundred percent” wants to stay with Avalanche: report

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Philipp Grubauer said he wants to stay with the Colorado Avalanche.

The goalie can be an unrestricted free agent July 28.

“One-hundred percent,” Grubauer told the Denver Post while participating in the 2021 MLB All-Star Celebrity Softball Game at Coors Field on Sunday. “I think we have an incredible team next year, too. (General manager) Joe (Sakic) and (assistant GM Chris MacFarland), they always do a great job putting a team together that’s performing at a high level and playing in the (Stanley Cup Playoffs). And I want to be a part of that.

“Everything is uncertain right now. Every team is waiting for the expansion draft. I would love to stay in Denver. Denver has become home. I love the team, love the organization. So it would be nice to work something out.”

Grubauer was 30-9-1 with a 1.95 goals-against average, .922 save percentage and seven shutouts in 40 games (39 starts) this season. He was a finalist for the Vezina Trophy voted as best goalie in the NHL, won by Marc-Andre Fleury of the Vegas Golden Knights.

It will be a busy offseason for the Avalanche, even apart from trying to re-sign Grubauer. Captain Gabriel Landeskog and forward Brandon Saad can be unrestricted free agents; defenseman Cal Makar can be a restricted free agent; and they will lose a player to the Seattle Kraken in the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft on July 21.

The Avalanche (39-13-4) won the Presidents’ Trophy with the best record in the NHL by a tiebreaker over the Golden Knights and entered the playoffs as the No. 1 seed. They won six straight games to start the postseason, a four-game sweep of the St. Louis Blues in the Stanley Cup First Round and the first two against the Golden Knights before losing the best-of-7 second round in six games. 

Grubauer had a 3.18 GAA and .901 save percentage against Vegas. He had a 1.75 GAA and .936 save percentage against St. Louis.

“As a team, I think, we (can) be proud of what we accomplished regardless,” Grubauer said. “Obviously, the Presidents’ Trophy isn’t the trophy you want to walk home with. We want the Stanley Cup.”

Grubauer won the Cup with the Washington Capitals in 2018 and said he understands the process it takes for a top team, like the Tampa Bay Lightning the past two seasons, to finally break through and win a championship.

“We’ve climbed the ladder over the last couple of years, and obviously, I’ve been saying it, in Washington, it took 5-6 years to get there. Tampa, it took 5-6 years to get there,” he said. “Tampa lost in the first round (in 2019 and) and they actually won it the next year. So I think there’s the experience that you have to take with you along the way and grow from that.”

Tweet from @SeanKeeler: NEW:#GoAvsGo goalie Philipp Grubauer said Sunday that he “wants” to be back with the Avalanche this fall. But is that a good thing? Why can’t we get #$*�� Game 6 in Vegas out of our heads?New #NHL column:https://t.co/iPOsAgaXLq #AllStarGame #MLBALLSTAR

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