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At the Rink blog

No communication issues for Avs’ Varlamov

Saturday, 10.22.2011 / 4:46 PM

By Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent / At the Rink blog

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At the Rink blog
No communication issues for Avs’ Varlamov
Colorado defenseman Erik Johnson was asked if there were any communication issues that needed to be worked out between the Avalanche's blueliners and Russian goalie Semyon Varlamov – who was brought in via a trade in the off-season.

The Avs don't have any other Russians on the roster, which was a big change for Varlamov – who had a couple of countrymen with him on the Washington Capitals. Still, Johnson said the communication on and off the ice is better than you might expect.

"When he first got here, I asked him if it was going to be tough for him not having any Russian guys around anymore, but he said he liked it because he could work on his English and not just speak Russian all the time," Johnson said. "I thought that was a pretty good answer. He just wants to learn and talk to his teammates and get acclimated with what we want him to do. It's worked well so far and the communication from (defensemen) to the goaltender has been pretty seamless. He understands the basic stuff we're saying to him."
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We want to make sure that whoever makes our team really makes our team by earning it and not putting them in situations where they get preference because of their status as a first-round pick or whatever it might be. That's not going to happen. Everybody has to earn their way on our team.

— Columbus Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen on the team's prospects at development camp