>Avalanche Sign Mercier
The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that it has signed forward prospect Justin Mercier. Mercier, 22, spent the last four seasons at Miami University, where he helped lead the RedHawks to the 2009 NCAA championship game by totaling 29 points (14g/15a) in 40 games as a senior.
The 5-foot-11, 190-pound forward finished his collegiate career with 104 points (52g/52a) in 157 contests, becoming the first player in school history to record 100 career points and be a part of 100 victories. A native of Erie, Pa., Mercier was the Avalanche’s eighth selection (sixth round, 168th overall) in the 2005 Entry Draft.
This is a great signing for both the Avalanche and Mercier. Colorado had until August 15th to sign him and by all accounts, Justin got a very fair deal with the Avs. Reports said that Mercier and his agent felt that he was more valuable than the offer that Colorado had originally presented, but the negotiations remained cordial on both sides and a deal was done. While the details of the signing weren’t released, it will most likely be a standard three year entry-level conract that will see him play most of this year and possibly the next in Lake Erie. He adds to a strong group of winger prospects in the Avalanche system and with the youth movement in Colorado, we could possibly see Mercier, who joined Miami’s 100 point club this season, playing for the big club sooner, rather than later.