AVALANCHE

Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog is not retiring, return unclear

May 23, 2024, 11:01 AM | Updated: 1:35 pm

Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog held a press conference on Thursday morning, and there was big news.

He is not retiring.

Despite rampant speculation when the presser was announced on Wednesday, that was made clear from the jump. Avalanche PR joked it wouldn’t happen at the team’s practice facility if that were the case, and Landeskog would be dressed a little nicer.

He wore an Avalanche t-shirt and a hat with their foot logo on the front, as dozens of reporters packed into a small room at Family Sports Center.

Landeskog said “we’ll never really know” how close he was to skating in the playoffs this year, especially because postseason hockey is such a beast. He called it the best decision for his health. Head coach Jared Bednar said after the season he didn’t think Landeskog was close.

The captain hasn’t played since the team won the Stanley Cup in 2022, missing the last two full seasons. He continues to rehab a knee that went under cartilage transplant surgery last May, the latest in a number of procedures.

Landeskog admitted it was tough watching the team from the sidelines, as they lost to the Dallas Stars in six games in Round 2 of their playoff series.

“Just kind of a slow form of torture I feel like. Win or lose, you want to be out there with the guys, right? Even after heartbreaking losses, you want to be in the room with the guys,” Landeskog said.

He did add that it helped he was around the team since December, and traveling on the road as well.

As for when Landeskog can hopefully get back next year? He’s not putting a timeline on that yet, answering the question with a smile on his face.

“You asked about next season? When’s training camp? Between mid-September and start of April. I feel pretty good about it,” Landeskog said with a laugh.

He went on to talk about how it’s been frustrating because he can feel great, then have setbacks that keep him off the ice for a month. It’s still very much touch and go on when he could help the Avalanche try to win a Stanley Cup during the 2024-25 season.

For now, the best news is Gabriel Landeskog is still on the team. And he very much wants to be out there at some point next year.

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