While the Colorado Avalanche may not be present in this year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs, fans of hockey in Colorado will still have a rooting interest. A total of 12 players who formerly featured for Colorado schools will feature in this year’s fight for the Cup.

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That list includes nine University of Denver alums and three Colorado College alums as broken down by College Hockey Inc. on their recent list of NCAA alums playing in this year’s NHL playoffs.

Alums from 37 schools set to lead teams into the @NHL‘s Stanley Cup Playoffs http://t.co/1hsLLSbDCq pic.twitter.com/ABWfEGYtGa

— College Hockey, Inc. (@collegehockey) April 15, 2015


Two of this year’s playoff teams feature DU teammates. Forwards Joe Colborne and Drew Shore both feature for the Calgary Flames while defenseman Chris Butler and former Avalanche forward Paul Stastny both play for St. Louis. Stastny has featured on the same line as former Colorado College center Jaden Schwartz and the pair has combined well this season.

Stastny and Butler open the postseason against Minnesota, which features former WCHA Rookie of the Year and DU forward Jason Zucker and defenseman Nate Prosser, who was a four-year starter at CC.

Mark Stuart rounds out the list of former Tigers in this year’s playoffs. The Winnipeg Jets’ alternate captain formerly captained CC to a Frozen Four appearance in the 2004-05 NCAA season, losing to eventual champion Denver.

Former Hobey Baker award winner Matt Carle, along with former DU head coach George Gwozdecky will hope to lead the Tampa Bay Lighting out of its first-round matchup against the Detroit Red Wings.

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Other former Pios featuring in the NHL’s Eastern Conference playoff matchups include Matt Donovan (New York Islanders), Patrick Wiercioch (Ottawa) and Beau Bennett (Pittsburgh).

So even though the Avalanche are sitting at home, Colorado College is in re-build mode, DU once again fell short of another title and no players from Air Force are in the NHL, hockey fans in Colorado still have something to hold onto this season…for just a little longer.

Marco Cummings is a staff writer for Mile High Sports. He can be reached via email at [email protected] or on Twitter @Marco_Cummings

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