Avs buy out Zanon

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The beard is gone.

That’s the story out of Colorado on Thursday as the Avalanche announced they’ve bought out the contract of defenseman Greg Zanon.

The most notable thing about this transaction is that Colorado is conducting a regular buyout on Zanon, not a compliance buyout.

Why?

In short, the Avs don’t have any cap concerns for 2013-14 — they’re nearly $12 million under the ceiling — and would prefer to save their compliance buyouts for next season, should they need to use them.

Here’s more, from the Denver Post’s Adrian Dater:

Zanon had one year left on his deal, worth $2.25 million.

By doing a standard buyout, the Avs must give Zanon two-thirds of that remaining salary in a lump sum ($1.5 million). That $1.5 million counts against the Avs’ salary cap, but they can spread it out over two years.

That means Zanon will still cost the Avs a cap hit of $750,000 for this season and next.

Zanon had no goals in 2013 and finished with a minus-16 rating, though to be fair most of the Avs were minus players.

The former Predator, Wild and Bruin will now look for work elsewhere, likely as a bottom-pairing defenseman on a team that needs someone to block shots.