ColoradoAvalanche.com profiles the players named to the Avalanche's 20th Anniversary Team.
On Oct. 17, the fan-selected Colorado Avalanche 20th Anniversary Team was announced and Gabriel Landeskog was honored to find out he was one of the twelve forwards named.
“It’s humbling that the fans have chosen me to be on that team,” said the 23-year-old left wing. “I think that the first sense of emotion coming over you is the fact that there are so many good players on that team, you don’t really know if you belong. But it’s an honor to voted on by the fans.”
The Stockholm, Sweden, native was selected No. 2 overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft by Colorado and made his debut in the league on Oct. 8, 2011.
Landeskog tallied 52 points (22 goals, 30 assists) in 82 contests during his rookie campaign (2011-12) and ended the season with a plus-20 rating, 219 hits and five game-winning goals. The Swede became the second NHL rookie ever to surpass 20 goals and 200 hits in a campaign. His success earned him the 2012 Calder Memorial Trophy as the rookie of the year, making Landeskog just the second Avalanche player to win the Calder (Chris Drury won in 1999).
Before starting his sophomore season in the NHL, Landeskog became the youngest captain in NHL history at 19 years, 286 days, when he was named to the role on Sept. 4, 2012. He became just the fourth captain in Avs history, joining Joe Sakic, Adam Foote and Milan Hejduk.
In 2014-15, Landeskog shared the team lead—with Jarome Iginla—with 59 points (23 goals, 36 assists) and eight power-play goals.
Landeskog has skated in over 330 regular-season contests with Colorado to date, recording 231 points (94 goals, 137 assists). So far this year, the left wing has found the back of the net 14 times and has added 24 helpers in 56 contests.
The 6-foot-1, 210-pound left wing was just three-years-old when the Avalanche won its first Stanley Cup in June of 1996.
“It really set the benchmark of where this organization should be and belongs,” Landeskog said about the Avalanche winning two Stanley Cups in five years. “We’ve got some hard work in front of us but we are definitely ready to do that.
“You could make an anniversary team out of just players from those first two Stanley Cup teams, from those first five or six years of the Avs being here. I am honored to be a part of the 20th Anniversary Team. It’s exciting for the fans to have a say and kind of create their own team.”
When he looks back at the success the Avalanche has had in the past 20 years, Landeskog is excited for the future.
“No doubt we are extremely excited for the future, and the fan support has been tremendous in this city,” he said. “For us, it’s just a matter of putting a lot of hard work in and making sure that we prepare ourselves to be great. It’s something that we are trying to focus on, making sure that we get that winning tradition back.”
Landeskog and the other members of the 20th Anniversary team were honored in an on-ice ceremony before the Avalanche faced off against the Minnesota Wild on Dec. 7.