Capitals Trade Goalie Philipp Grubauer, Defenseman Brooks Orpik to Avalanche for Draft Pick

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The Washington Capitals traded goalie Philipp Grubauer to the Colorado Avalanche ahead of the first round of the NHL Draft on Friday.  

The Washington Capitals traded goalie Philipp Grubauer to the Colorado Avalanche ahead of the first round of the NHL Draft on Friday.

Grubaer heads to the Avs along with defenseman Brooks Orpik for Colorado’s second-round pick, No. 47, in this weekend’s draft.

The netminder went 15-10-3 with a 2.29 GAA and .923 save percentage during the 2017-18 season, with the 35 games played being the most action he’s seen in a single season. The Avalanche add Grubauer to a goaltending duo of Seymon Varlamov, who has a year remaining on his current deal, and Pavel Francouz, signed in late May after receiving KHL Goalie of the Year honors. 

Orpik is a durable, physical defender who posted 10 assists in 81 games on the season, and scored his first goal in over two years during the Capitals’ Stanley Cup run this spring. While he’s been mostly relegated to a bottom-pairing role in recent seasons, Orpik’s veteran status will play a large role on a young, developing Avalanche team.

The deal wasn’t unexpected, as Grubauer is a restricted free agent in need of a new contract and should be rewarded after stepping in as the team’s top option after starter Braden Holtby struggled down the stretch. The move also clears salary cap room for Washington to be able re-sign top defenseman John Carlson, who is expected to get a sizable raise from his approximately $4 million cap hit over the last six seasons.

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