Forward Derek Ryan is reportedly in contract negotiations with the Colorado Avalanche, who are favored to land the top talent. The native of Spokane, Wash. played last season in the Swedish Hockey League after three years playing in Austria.
According to Mike Chambers of The Denver Post, Ryan and Colorado management are discussing details of a two-way contract for the 2015-16 season.
The Avs aren’t the only team, however, to have shown interest in the Orebro HK player. The Toronto Maple Leafs and Washington Capitals are also in the conversation for Ryan’s services.
In 2011, Ryan was named Canadian Interuniversity Sport (West) Most Valuable Player while a fourth-year senior at the University of Alberta and was also named to the All-Canadian First Team. Prior to that, he played four seasons with the Spokane Chiefs of the Western Hockey League.
The 5-foot-10, 180-pound forward currently plays for Orebro HK, a Swedish team where he led the league in scoring, notching 60 points in 55 games. Ryan was awarded Austria’s top pro during the 2013-14 season.
The Avalanche has a roster full of forwards, particularly at the center position, so Ryan will likely play for Colorado’s AHL affiliate, the San Antonio Rampage, if signed.
Mike Tolbert, a Mile High Sports intern and student at MSU-Denver, contributed to this report