2001 Avalanche Champions in ’22 Avs: ‘I see Joe Sakic’s fingerprints all over this team’

Denver – It has been 21 years since Bob Hartley took over Colorado Avalanche to their second Stanley Cup behind a star-studded roster that included Joe Sakic, Patrick Roy, Milan Hedock, Ray Bourke, Rob Blake, Adam Foot and one of many recreation’s nice leaders, Chris Drury, who landed a excessive position when Peter Forbserge suffered a ruptured spleen in Semi-finals of the convention.

There was the younger buck, Alex Tangway, who scored two targets, together with the playoff within the collection, in Match 7 towards New Jersey Devils And a number of nice professionals reminiscent of Sejon Bowden, Phil Nieminen, Stefan Yale, Dave Reed, Dan Henot, Eric Messier and John Clem, amongst others.

With a 3rd Asian Cup looming, presumably on Friday evening at house, Hartley has mirrored on 2001 in comparison with 2022’s Avalanche Juggernaut who appears to be like on the early levels of being a protracted thorn within the aspect for an additional 31 NHL distinction.

Hartley stated throughout a telephone interview with the athlete Thursday. “This workforce was constructed the way in which Joe Sakic performed. 2 hundred ft of hockey, balanced, ups and downs within the lineup.

“Joe was at all times a participant who by no means went down, by no means went up. The nickname ‘Strange Joe’ was excellent as a result of he did his work day by day with a smile. A easy, easy man who does an excellent job. You take a look at this workforce, and I see Joe Sakic’s fingerprints throughout it. This workforce.”

What impressed Hartley probably the most was that Sakic, the Avs basic supervisor, and Jared Bednar, their sixth-year coach, have been each younger when he took over, and so they’ve grown collectively and proven spectacular endurance with the guts of the workforce, specifically Nathan McKinnonAnd the Gabriel Landskog And the Miko Rantanen.

They by no means panicked, Hartley stated. “They went with them and at this time these guys are the face of the franchise.”

Off the mark—as a result of there isn’t any option to replicate Roy’s Corridor of Famer—Reid and Podein, two formidable gamers on the 2001 squad, see main similarities between the 2001 and 2022 editions of Avs.

“We had (Porky). “We traded with Blake on the commerce deadline and Adam Foot was already there,” Reid stated. “Kal Makar is youthful than these guys, however he may be in comparison with any one among these three. Perhaps on the finish of the day he can be higher than any of those three, and two of those guys are within the Corridor of Fame.

“Then you will have Devon Toze, which is a sort of hidden gem. I believe everybody realizes how good this man actually is. You’ll be able to put him as a second-placed defender on any workforce and as many groups he can be #1 simply. We introduced in Blake, they introduced in (Josh) Manson. I’m not making a comparability with the Corridor of Famer Josh Manson. However it’s a related methodology. Josh can play any manner Blake does. If you need him to play bodily, he can. You need him to play a talent, he can. And irrespective of the way you need him to do it, energy play, or penalty killing, he may be there and contribute in an enormous manner.”

Equally, Reid stated up entrance that the 2022 Avs can play in any manner, in any model, identical to the 2001 workforce, and have related equipment above and under the lineup.

“We had just a little little bit of all the things, from expertise, we had extra dimension and quantity on the again finish of our group than on the entrance finish than this workforce,” Reed stated. Our talent carried us guys. They play the sport fiercely. Not bodily ferocity. Their ferocity lies in all the things they do, whether or not it is free puck fights, whether or not it is ahead checking, again checking, or blocking pictures. We have at all times had power. Excessive, however they’re on a unique degree than anybody else within the league with this fierce play.”

Podein, who typically performed Yelle, Messier or Reid, is shocked by this model of Avs.

“I simply needed to say ‘Wow,’” Bowden stated. “The velocity of those guys, there’s nowhere in there. There isn’t any air to breathe whenever you get the puck disc. Josef (Sakic) did an incredible job constructing this workforce into what it’s at this time.

“I don’t know the workforce personally now, however we had a really robust workforce that was very dedicated to one another. Simply watching from the surface in, it appears the group has the identical feeling now.”

With Avalanche on the point of its first championship since 2001, the athlete He surveyed members of this Stanley Cup workforce, asking what similarities they see with this workforce and their watching experiences.

Editor’s word: Some quotes have been modified barely for readability and size.


Joe Sakic, captain and striker

“Twenty-one years in the past. very long time. I believe solely depth. We had numerous depth and star gamers and a deep squad, guys who performed their half and knew their half, accepted theirs. On the again finish, for my part, this 12 months’s D-core will in all probability be the most effective D-core since that D-core. Numerous similarities this fashion. And the way in which we’re taking part in: I believe that 12 months we have been actually centered from dropping the Recreation 7 convention finals two occasions in a row and we had a mission from the begin to try to get the house ice benefit. It was related with this group from final 12 months.”

Ray Bourke, defender

“They’ve been a really gifted workforce for 4 robust years. Because the 12 months approaches they’re seen as contenders for the cup. For them they weren’t capable of get by that second spherical, and the identical occurred with Colorado (within the late ’90s, early 2000s). They arrived. They bought there the primary 12 months (in 1996) and so they received, after which they’ve this gifted workforce that made it to the convention finals however is having a tough time attending to the ultimate chapter till 2001.”

Adam Foote, Defender Man

Foote has a household relationship with the collection. His son Cal is a protection man in Lightning.

“We had Patrick Roy. I believe their guard is right here, Darcy ComberHe may be able to win a cup. It’s adequate. However when you do not win, they do not know. For the protection males, Cal Makar He was particular, however Ray Bourque was particular, and Rob Blake was particular. They’ve Nathan McKinnon, however we’ve Peter Forsberg, Sakich. They’ve star energy right here like we did.”

Alex Tangway, striker

“I believe like our workforce in 2001, that they had failed in qualifying in earlier years with a workforce they felt might win. The dedication and focus they confirmed was superb, Identical to our “Mission 16W” caps Ray Burke introduced us in on the primary day of qualifying to maintain us centered. Let’s examine if that is sufficient to beat the two-time champion.”

Brian Trotier, assistant coach

“They appear nice. Hungry. … Video games have been nice leisure.”

Phil Nieminen, striker

“They play fashionable hockey, and I believe we performed fashionable hockey too. Numerous similarities due to management, will, fashionable hockey, very properly educated tactically, ambiance. However on the similar time, 20 years in the past, it is utterly totally different… We had Pierre Lacroix. Now it is Joe’s time, and you’ll see Joe’s character.”

Dave Reed, striker

“I believe (the groups) are very related. … We had guys who might transfer the disc. We had gamers who have been extremely expert, and the underside three of us all had gamers who have been expert and will transfer the disc, do this first move, soar play when wanted, assault when wanted The necessity, however they’ve the defensive accountability. That is why we succeeded, as a result of everybody was defensively accountable and will transfer the disc.”

Shogun Bowden, ahead

“The physique of the sport is loads totally different than it was 5, ten, twenty years in the past. The Colorado velocity permits them to get an opportunity to be very bodily, end their exams, get in your face, cling to the puck, little issues like that. I believe you solely see it, at evening. And by day. I do not know easy methods to put it. They simply… It is like you will have a bruise in your arm. If somebody pricks it, the primary time, it is annoying. The second, third, tenth, twentieth, 100. Quickly, you may say, “Go away About me.” I believe that’s what Colorado is doing proper now.”

Milan Hidok, striker

“I undoubtedly see some similarities with the 2001 Stanley Cup workforce. They do not need to be the highest gamers to hold the burden each evening, however the depth gamers rating some big targets on time all through the playoffs. … In my view this 12 months’s workforce could possibly be Higher than the 2001 workforce. However they need to take it to the end line.”


With the Avs as soon as successful the Stanley Cup and ending the Lightning dream by three strokes, Reid sees no manner now that the avalanche can be denied.

He as soon as once more mirrored on McKinnon’s disappointment when the Avs have been defeated final season post-season within the second spherical to Vegas Golden Nights.

“You could possibly inform that man would not be held again from getting again to that degree and reaching nice issues,” Reed stated. “And the way in which he is performed this 12 months and the remainder of the workforce follows, everybody appears to have that velocity when Nate goes. They do not offer you any time in your space. They usually do not cease.

“I do not suppose they’re involved about the way in which the opposite workforce performs to be sincere with you: ‘That is the way in which we play, and you’ll sustain. And when you can sustain, that is good for you. However if you cannot sustain, we cannot flinch. It is embarrassing. very Fantastic. “

Hartley thinks the collection is “over”.

“Ardour (Ball Enviornment), I bear in mind Recreation 7 at Pepsi Heart, 2001, simply the ambiance round city. I do know Tampa Bay will present up. I do know Tampa Bay can be prepared.

“However, Avalanche, I believe they’re the brand new children within the constructing now. I might prefer to see the Colorado Avalanche win for the gamers, for the group, and for the followers. It is an excellent sports activities metropolis that is going to be enjoyable.”

“For me, I grew up as a younger skilled coach on this group, whether or not it is within the MLS, the NHL, even from afar, it is sort of my favourite workforce. So I am rooting for them. There is a hockey fan inside me, however simply watching the avalanche in these The qualifiers, they create again nice recollections.”

Joe Smith of Athletic additionally contributed to this story.

(Photograph: Isaiah J. Downing/USA Immediately)

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