DENVER (AP) — The Colorado Avalanche have bought out the final year of defenseman Francois Beauchemin’s contract.

General manager Joe Sakic announced the move Thursday. Beauchemin had a no-movement clause in his deal, and buying him out allows Colorado to protect an extra player in the upcoming Vegas expansion draft.

Francois Beauchemin #32 of the Colorado Avalanche skates against the Boston Bruins during the first period at TD Garden on November 12, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Beauchemin had one season left on his three-year deal at a salary-cap hit of $4.5 million. Because he was over 35 when he signed the deal, that entire amount counts against the Avalanche’s cap this season, making it more of a move with the expansion draft in mind.

Moving on from the 37-year-old also means Colorado can get younger after finishing last in the NHL. Beauchemin averaged 21:31 of ice time and had 18 points last season.

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