If Mikhail Grigorenko were to make any roster in 2015-16, his best chance probably would be with the Colorado Avalanche.
After all, Avalanche head coach Patrick Roy has seen firsthand what Grigorenko can accomplish at his best … albeit in the QMJHL.
Regardless, Grigorenko didn’t cloak his excitement about being reunited with Roy, when asked by the Denver Post back in July.
“I can’t wait for the opportunity to have him as a coach again,” Grigorenko said. “I had my best years in Quebec and it was great having Patrick as a coach. He was great to me and taught me a lot of things on and off the ice. I can’t thank him enough for what he’s done for me already, and I can’t wait to have him as a coach again.”
At 21, it’s too early to call this a make-or-break chance for Grigorenko, yet it’s a golden opportunity for him to show that the Buffalo Sabres dropped the ball regarding his development.
Let’s be honest, though: Griogrenko has more going for him than the pedigree of being a first-round pick (12th overall in 2012) and a good head start with his head coach. While the Sabres flinched at giving him a one-way contract for next season, that’s exactly what he received from Colorado.
The bottom line is that the Avalanche have every incentive to give the prospect a chance to succeed, so now Grigorenko just needs to take the bull by the horns.