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February 6, 2012 | 9:59am ET
Avs to use defensive depth at the deadline

The Colorado Avalanche is expected to deal one of its eight NHL caliber defensemen by or prior to the trade deadline, according to Adrian Dater of the Denver Post.

The Chicago Blackhawks and the Detroit Red Wings have been shopping around for a quality blueliner and could find a good fit in Colorado.

The leading candidates are rumored to be pending unrestricted free agent Shane O'Brien and Kyle Quincey, although the latter is expected to bring the most in return.

Quincey, who is currently earning $3.13 million and is slated for restricted free agency this summer, has collected four goals and 18 assists for 22 points in 48 games this season.

O'Brien has recorded one goal and 13 assists for 14 points and 79 penalty minutes in 49 contests and is in the last year of his contract at a cap hit of $1.1 million.

Meanwhile, speculation suggests that former Avalanche Chris Stewart could be available at the deadline seeing that he is in the final year of his contract and struggling offensively in St. Louis.

The 24-year-old reportedly never wanted to leave Colorado in the first place and could return to the Avs lineup to improve their size and grit up front.

In 48 games with the Blues this season, Stewart has tallied 10 goals and 10 assists for 20 points, and 78 penalty minutes.

More Trade Deadline Info 
List of Trades |
No-Trade/No-Movement Clauses | Top 25 Available Players | Team-by-Team Cap Info

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