Colorado Avalanche: With Peter Mueller Injured Again, What Is Avs' Next Move?

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Colorado Avalanche: With Peter Mueller Injured Again, What Is Avs' Next Move?
Victor Decolongon/Getty Images

Peter Mueller was hoping that the 2011-12 NHL season would be one in which he made an incredible comeback from his battle with concussion symptoms.

He looked good in camp, and all signs seemed to point to Mueller being healthy and ready to go for the season. But there has been another road block set up to prevent Mueller's feel-good story from happening.

Yesterday, the Denver Post's Adrian Dater reported that Mueller is out once again with another head injury.

Mueller had been ineffective in the first three games of the season, seemingly a bit shy to get fully involved in the game, knowing that another big hit could lead to another concussion.

It appears that even without going "all out" in the games, Mueller's head is once again playing games with him.

The Avalanche have been very quiet on the specifics of what is really bothering Mueller, saying only that he "doesn't feel well" and that Mueller will continue to be evaluated.

The big question that comes out of this is: What on earth are the Avalanche going to do with Mueller? Can they afford to continue to wait and see if he will be able to overcome this concussion, or is it time to move on and make some real roster changes?

I have to say that I'm a big fan of Peter Mueller, but at some point, you have to think about what is best for your team. And at this point, Mueller is just in a bad position as far as hockey is concerned.

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We all know that he wants to play and help his team, but his physical well-being is far more important than being able to play hockey. At some point, you need to put your health first. Is that time coming for Mueller?

So who might the Avalanche potentially look for in order to replace Mueller? There are a couple of options.

First, fix it from within. Joakim Lindstrom has played very well with Matt Duchene and Milan Hejduk; keeping Lindstrom on that line doesn't seem like a bad option.

Perhaps the solution has already happened, and the Avalanche have better things to worry about.

Second, make some kind of a trade.

Adrian Dater tweeted after the Avalanche's loss to Chicago last night that the Avalanche have interest in Calgary's Rene Bourque, adding that they would have to be careful about who the Avalanche gave up to get him.

With Lindstrom finding such good chemistry with Milan Hejduk especially, I'm not certain that trading for Rene Bourque is all that necessary.

Unless, perhaps, they are trying to replace Chuck Kobasew, who has been rather invisible in his time with the Avalanche.

In the end, I think that the Avalanche will probably stick with the players that they have, maybe bringing up some Lake Erie players or giving a guy like Kevin Porter another shot.

In the end, it is really difficult to predict what the Avalanche are going to do with Mueller, but we all continue to hope for his recovery and well-being.

The Avalanche will play in Chicago on Saturday, once again without Peter Mueller.

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