Who Wore It Best: Number 45

As our Who Wore it Best series continues, we come to the “injury callup” number 45. Most players that wore this number did so because they were an injury callup until Mark Barberio chose it as his preferred number before giving it up to Bernier who felt the same way about the number. It is currently not anyone’s number unless Mark Barberio takes it back this upcoming season.

Rick Berry

Berry was drafted in the 3rd round by the Avalanche in 1997. He spent a lot of time in the AHL until Colorado called him up for 19 games in 2000-2001 season. He never played in the playoffs for the cup winning team, though. He spent the next season with the Avs playing in 57 games. He left the organization in a trade that sent him and Ville Nieminen to Pittsburgh for Darius Kasparaitis. He then spent time with the Phoenix, Nashville, Washington, and the Islanders organizations before eventually retiring, though he only ever appeared in NHL games for Washington and Pittsburgh. In total, Barry spent 76 games with the Avalanche and recorded 4 assits and 98 PIM.

Jeff Daw

Daw spent most of his professional career being an AHL journeyman after finishing his NCAA career with UMass Lowell. He signed with the Avalanche in 2001 and was called up for his lone NHL game that season. He even recorded an assist in that game. He went on to sign with other organizations to play for their AHL affiliate but never got to play in another NHL game.

Steve Brule

Brule was drafted by New Jersey in 1993 but was never much of an impact player in the NHL but was another very successful AHL player. He never cracked the roster with the Devils but ended up signing with the Avalanche in 2002 where they would eventually call him up after an injury. He spent 2 games with the Avalanche before being sent back down without ever recording a point. He resigned with the Avalanche but spent all his time with the AHL affiliate at the time, the Hershey Bears. He went to Europe to continue his career before retiring in 2013.

Chris Durno

Durno was, yet another NCAA free agent that signed with the Avalanche in 2008. He played with a lot of AHL teams throughout his professional career and when he signed with the Avs with the intention of playing for the Lake Erie Monsters (the AHL affiliate at the time). He had a realatively successful season spending 76 games and recording 46 points with Lake Erie while being called up for 2 games that first season. The second season with the organization he ended up being called up for a lot more appearing in 41 games and recording 8 points in that span. He left the organization as a free agent and was not able to crack an NHL roster again.

Dennis Everberg

Everberg was a Euro free agent scouted by the Avalanche. The Avs had trouble drafting around this time and tried to suppliment the abysmal returns on draft picks by signing Euros. Everberg started out in the AHL where he looked very promising. Injuries plagued the team at the time and Everberg was called up that season and spent the rest of the season with the Avalanche for a total of 55 games that season while recording 3 goals and 9 assists which is good for a rookie, especially an undrafted one. The next season Everberg oddly was left out of the lineup most of the time and spent the majority of the season in the AHL. He appeared in 15 games that season but never got on the score sheet. Everberg was frusterated with the organization because he felt since he showed he could hang in the NHL, he should get another shot but he was sent down to the AHL and felt forgotten about. The AHL at the time was a disaster and the coaches were abysmal. He left to play in the SHL in Sweden and found success there. The KHL scooped him up and he is currently playing there for the Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk. Everberg played in a total of 70 games in the 45 sweater recording 3 goals, 9 assists, and 10 PIM.

Mark Barberio

Barberio was drafted by Tampa Bay in 2008 and started his development with that organization. He appeared in 103 games for them before the age of 24 which is quite impressive for a defensemen. His future looked bright as a bottom pairing defensemen in the NHL. (A respectable career for someone drafted in the 6th round) He left Tampa Bay as a free agent and signed with Montreal. He struggled to impress management and had a very hard time cracking the roster consistently. The fanbase was relatively in favor of him but the coaching staff did not feel the same way. He was sent down to the AHL on waivers multiple times while he was in Montreal. In 2016 Colorado decided to take a chance on Barberio and claimed him off of waivers. He gained favor with the staff and had some injuries, the fanbase and management saw potential. He looked decent enough. Though he has only played in 80 games for the Avalanche in less than 2 seasons, that was mostly because of injury, not on ice play. He has been signed for 2 more years and he plans to stay with the Avalanche. He feels they have given him a chance to be who he is and have confidence in him, something he had not been given previously. You may remember Barberio from yesterday’s WWIB, because he was 44 in the 2017-2018 season, but that was because he gave up 45 (his preferred number) for Bernier when the Avalanche signed him. Barberio has played in 80 games for the Avalanche recording 5 goals, 17 assists, and 35 PIM.

Jonathan Bernier

Bernier was drafted in the first round by the LA Kings in 2006. He developed there, mostly in the AHL and appearing for a couple games as a callup until 2010. In 2010 at age 22 Bernier became Quick’s backup. He showed well throughout the 3 years he spent there and Toronto wanted to give him a shot. Toronto had been struggling a lot for years and needed a starting goalie. The Kings traded Bernier to Toronto where he became the starter for the first 2 seasons there and had middling success. The verdict was split on him and he lost confidence with the organization as James Riemer became the fan favorite as a starter. Bernier eventually lost favor and left as a free agent. He signed with Anaheim where he spent time as the backup before Gibson went down with injury. Bernier showed well as he started the rest of the season. He was on the rise and signed a deal with the Avalanche the next year that would showcase more starting ability. Varlamov is known to go down with injuries so Bernier was looking to be backup and possibly start for a lot of games when Varly went down. Bernier did just that in 2017-2018 where he was a key piece in the Avalanche making playoffs and the astonishing 47 point increase. His highlight being a 10 game win streak that was a major part in the turning point that season. He wanted to stay but could not work out a deal before the Avalanche traded for Phillip Grubauer. Bernier would then leave the Avs and sign with the Red Wings for a 3 year deal looking to overtake Jimmy Howard as the starter.

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Collin is a software developer and through his passion of the Colorado Avalanche started this site with the help of the other writers here. He looks forward to talking Avs and writing for you all.

One thought on “Who Wore It Best: Number 45

  • August 10, 2018 at 8:31 AM

    Fun fact. Jeff Daw played for the Elmira Jackals.

    Also a fun fact. There was a team named the Elmira Jackals.

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