The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that Joe Sakic
has been named Executive Advisor/Alternate Governor of the Avalanche. He will begin his new position at the end of the 2010-11 regular season.
Sakic, 41, will serve as an executive advisor regarding all facets of hockey operations. He will also be involved in the business side and will represent the Avalanche at the Board of Governors Meetings as one of the Alternate Governors.
“I feel that now is the time for this new challenge,” said Sakic
. “Two years after retiring from the game of hockey, and having had the opportunity to attend the Board of Governors Meeting, I feel excited about getting involved more with the organization. The fact that the Avalanche is giving me this opportunity shows how much they trust my background and hockey experience. I look forward to this new expanded role with the franchise.”
“The fact that Joe Sakic has decided to come on board on all facets of hockey operations is exciting news for us and all of our fans,” said Avalanche Governor Josh Kroenke
“Joe has been the face of our franchise for two decades,” said Avalanche President Pierre Lacroix
. “He led our organization to success with his contributions both on and off the ice. Right after his retirement we kept him involved, and now his presence and contributions to our team will be a huge asset going forward. Joe will not only serve as an advisor but will also be an invaluable resource.”
“With his background and credibility in the sport of hockey and in our community, Joe will be an outstanding asset to our entire operation,” said Avalanche General Manager / Executive Vice President Greg Sherman
. “His presence and insight will be essential to our entire team both on and off the ice.”
Sakic announced his retirement from the game of hockey on July 9, 2009, following a career that spanned 20 seasons and 1,378 games with the same organization. He wore the ‘C’ as team captain for 16 consecutive seasons (17 seasons overall), making him the second-longest serving captain in NHL history. Sakic led the Avalanche to two Stanley Cup titles (1996, 2001), which included the city of Denver’s first major professional sports championship in 1996. The Burnaby, B.C., native captured the franchise’s first Hart Trophy as league MVP in 2001, won the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP in 1996, earned the Lester B. Pearson Award (NHLPA MVP) and Lady Byng Trophy (sportsmanship) in 2001 and was named to the NHL’s First All-Star Team on three occasions (2001, 2002 and 2004).
Sakic is the eighth-highest scorer in NHL history with 1,641 career points. He sits 15th all-time in goals (625) and 11th in assists (1,016). Only four players ever recorded more points with a single franchise: Gordie Howe (1809) and Steve Yzerman (1755) with Detroit, Mario Lemieux with Pittsburgh (1723) and Wayne Gretzky with Edmonton (1669). Sakic ranks seventh all-time in both playoff goals (84) and playoff points (188-tied), and holds the NHL record with eight postseason overtime goals.
Selected by the Quebec Nordiques in the first round (15th overall) of the 1987 Entry Draft, Sakic is the franchise’s all-time leader in nearly every statistical category. With Sakic as team captain, the Avalanche/Nordiques captured an NHL-record nine consecutive division championships from 1995 to 2003. In addition to its two Stanley Cup titles, the Avalanche also won two Presidents’ Trophies and made six appearances in the Western Conference Finals during that time span.
Sakic’s #19 jersey was retired by the Avalanche during a pre-game ceremony on Oct. 1, 2009. To honor Sakic’s legacy, the Avalanche organization that night unveiled that his dressing room stall would be enshrined forever behind glass with his jersey and equipment hanging as they had for so many years.