AVALANCHE

Avs legend Joe Sakic, a top-3 Denver sports figure ever, turns 54

Jul 7, 2023, 11:56 AM

A very happy birthday to Colorado Avalanche legend Joe Sakic.

A beloved player and team executive, Sakic turned 54-years-old on Friday.

Sakic is easily the franchise leader in goals, assists, points, games played, etc. He’s the best player to wear an Avalanche sweater and his three championship rings are the most of anyone from the club.

Sakic won two as a player in 1996 and 2001, and one as general manager in 2022. He was promoted to team president shortly after the Avalanche’s third victory parade.

As a skater it’s hard to forget Sakic’s unreal goal against Martin Brodeur in Game 7 of the 2001 Final. It was Ray Bourque’s final game, and Sakic made sure his good buddy would retire with a Stanley Cup.

That laser made it 3-0 and the Avalanche went on to win 3-1. Sakic immediately handed Bourque the Cup in a classy postgame gesture.

Sakic would go on to play all the way into the 2008-2009 season before calling it a career. He re-joined the Avs in 2011 to start his front office stint, eventually calling all the shots in 2013. He’s drafted the likes of Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen, Cale Makar and plenty of others, assembling a Hall of Fame resume as an executive.

And that’s where it’s hard to compare him to anyone in the history of Denver sports other than John Elway. They boast very similar resumes, with Elway also winning two titles as a player and one as an exec. Putting Elway No. 1 on your Mount Rushmore is fair, but it’s hard to argue Sakic is anywhere else but No. 2.

Nikola Jokic is certainly making his way up that list. You can make a case for guys like Terrell Davis, Peyton Manning, Von Miller, Patrick Roy and others, but Sakic’s achievements seem to top them.

Regardless, this is simply a happy birthday post to Super Joe. It’s very clear he’s an iconic sports figure in the history of the Mile High City.

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