NHL

Avalanche’s Bo Byram on Stanley Cup, Broncos and Nathan MacKinnon contract: “The quicker that can get done, the better”

Hey, Bo Byram’s just like you, Avs fans. The closer Nathan MacKinnon and Colorado get to a long-term contract, the happier he’s going to be, too.

“For sure,” the young Avalananche defenseman told The Denver Post before being honored during the Broncos-Texans game at Empower Field Sunday.

“I don’t know, I haven’t really seen the (reports). But yeah, he’s a huge part of our team. Obviously, he’s our best player. He’s a big part of our locker room, so the quicker that can get that done, the better.”

MacKinnon said late last week during the NHL/NHLPA tour near Las Vegas that he and the Avs are “pretty close” to a contract extension that could make him the highest-paid player in the league.

The Avs star also added that he’d “prefer” to get a deal done before the regular season begins on Oct. 12. The 27-year-old forward is entering the final year of a seven-season, $44.1-million contract and has said he doesn’t want negotiations becoming a distraction as the team chases a second straight Stanley Cup title.

Bryam was one of a half-dozen members of the 2022 Cup champions to be honored during the Broncos-Texans game. Front Range fans greeted the group with a raucous ovation and, as per Ball Arena tradition, a sing-along of Blink-182’s “All The Small Things.”

“A special thing about winning is, it’s contagious,” said Byram, whose plus-15 plus/minus rating in 20 postseason appearances last spring tied captain Gabe Landeskog for the team lead. “And we’ve all gotten a taste for it. Now we want to do it again. So that’s definitely our goal coming into the season.”

A championship is the goal for the Broncos, too, despite the offense’s less-than-scintillating start to the regular season. Byram’s advice for the Orange & Blue right about now?

“I mean, it’s a totally different sport,” the Avs defenseman replied. “You know, you’re going to go through adversity. You just gotta keep playing. You’ve gotta rely on your teammates, trust your teammates and enjoy the process.”

Can the Broncos fix their current process well enough to lift a trophy of their own?

“Yes,” Byram replied with a grin. “Of course.”

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