AVALANCHE

Landeskog’s career isn’t done, but admits injury could linger as he looks at options

Apr 13, 2023, 6:03 PM | Updated: 6:38 pm

DENVER—Gabriel Landeskog will not be a part of the Avalanche’s Stanley Cup title defense, as the team announced on Thursday he will miss the entire 2022-2023 season. But Colorado’s captain hopes to rejoin his teammates on the ice one day in the future.

Landeskog has been suffering from a cartilage injury at the bottom of his patella in his right leg since Sept. 2 2020, when a stray skate blade from Cale Makar cut his knee during Game 6 of a playoff series against the Stars.

Landy says the injury only really impacts him when skating, but that he and the organization have sought out all options and nothing has helped him get better.

Landeskog missed that Game 7, which was a loss, and came back to play 54 of the Avs’ 56 games in the COVID-shortened 2020-2021 season and another 10 in the playoffs. In 2022-2023 Landeskog played another 51 regular-season before getting knee surgery.

Landeskog returned for the playoffs where he tallied 22 points in 20 games en route to the Avs’ first title since 2001.

“I don’t regret anything especially not about last year’s playoffs. I would do anything to help this team. Last year was very special,” Landeskog said at a press conference on Thursday night. “This has been an ongoing conversation and I felt confident I was progressing until the last few weeks when things started to plateau.”

Landeskog hasn’t played this season and won’t. But he isn’t calling his career over despite his injury not getting any better for some time.

“Yeah, I’m confident in that,” he said of playing again. “When? I don’t know. You try to take it one step at a time.”

Landeskog decided to end his hopes of recovering in time for this playoff run with two regular season games left, on a night the Avs can clinch the Central Division crown. He also called the press conference to share publicly what has been going on with him in hopes of relieving pressure on his teammates.

“I wanted to do this for my teammates so they wouldn’t have to answer and speculate and I wanted to do it for my sake so we could get it out in the open,” Landeskog said.

Landeskog has now missed the last 105 regular-season games dating back to last season, but had those 20 games of magic in between. The 11-year captain of the Avs is fifth in career games played for the franchise with 738, seventh in goals at 238, and eighth in points at 571.

“This very well could linger into next year,” Landeskog said. “We’re exploring options and seeking the best possible expertise. I’m confident we’ll come out on the other side of this.”

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