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Colorado Avalanche

Joe and Debbie Sakic Become U.S. Citizens



Photo courtesy of Debbie Sakic

Joe Sakic, Debbie Sakic: United States citizens.

Denver sports’ First Couple spent Monday up in Vail celebrating the Fourth of July, with their newly designated status as official U.S. citizens. Let’s make one thing clear: The Sakics are Canadian citizens first and foremost.

The two got the application process to become dual Canadian-U.S. citizens years ago, and they were finally approved not too long ago in getting their green cards. Here is more on what the process entails in becoming a U.S. citizen, for those who weren’t born here.

Sakic has had a Denver residence since 1995, of course. His three kids were born in Denver, so they are automatically U.S. citizens. Sakic was born in a hospital in Vancouver and grew up in suburban Burnaby. Debbie is from Saskatchewan.

Superstreak Bonus!

So, the Sakics have all the rights and privileges as any other American now. Again, Canadian fans shouldn’t take umbrage at this. I know that Sakic is still Canadian, through and through. Same with Debbie.

But let’s give them a good, old-fashioned American welcome to two of our newest citizens.

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Adrian Dater - Kiss and Larry Bird fan. Writer with @Gambling and @Bookies, Avs Insider with 104.3 The Fan. Denver Post, SI, Bleacher Report alum, author of seven books.

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Yan Girard

Congratulations to the Avalanche for their championship. The team has been dominant throughout the playoffs and has literally flown over the playoffs. I think it’s been a long time since I’ve seen a team dominate like this in the playoffs. Very impressive. I am very happy for Kuemper. He must be the most relieved guy in the world right now. Now the team already has to think about next year. Important decisions will have to be made and may have repercussions for years to come. Obviously, the team will not be able to keep all the players of the last… Read more »

Demetris Gray

Geez Sammy ease up. Clearly you had time on your hands. How’s the sternum?

Bob Neal

Good to see you back Yan. A lot of us missed you. I’ll read your post when I can find an hour. Jeez, that’s a long one.


AD, I fail to see the relevance of your citizenship comment to Yan’s article.


Hoppyhacker was just making a joke about how Yan’s comment is so long it’s basically it’s own article.

Bob Neal

Yan, that was a long and very inspired read. First congratulations on your improved command of the English language. I could understand all the points you were making. My take on them is you think Darcy is a very marginal goalie bc he doesn’t have “the right stuff” to play at the highest levels and that Sammie was the centerpiece of the Avs resurgence. I credit your remembrance of history and your assertions are well supported. First, let’s tackle Darcy’s competitiveness. I doubt you heard but Bednar was on a radio program and indicated that the swelling in Darcy’s right… Read more »

Yan Girard

First of all, I thank you for taking the time to read my text and I hope it didn’t seem too long. As for Kuemper, if the latter was indeed bothered by an eye injury in the Stanley Cup Final in order to hinder him in his work, it does not show bednar’s great confidence in Francouz. According to you, Bednar mentioned that Kuemper didn’t see the puck around his feet very well. From what we saw in the Stanley Cup Final, the problem wasn’t just around his feet. At least half of Kuemper’s goals were bad goals. An average… Read more »

Bob Neal

I didn’t say Sammie was not a top 4 defender. I think he has 3 players on this team that play a similar style to his that are currently playing better than he is, Toews, Makar and Bo. They are mixed with some stronger players such as the Johnson bothers and Manson to round out a very solid defensive group. I don’t believe that you could have 6 defenders like Sammie or 6 players like JJ and get past the first round either. I think Sammie will be traded shortly bc there are other more pressing needs on this team.

Yan Girard

Indeed, the team has needs. However, you don’t solve a problem by creating a bigger problem. From what I see, you still haven’t finished making your list of 6 defenders!

Bob Neal

I didn’t realize that was my assignment. The same 6 they finished the season with. The three we’ve been discussing ad naseum and the Johnson brothers and Manson. They definitely need Manson or someone with a similar style of play.

Yan Girard

In two years :   Makar 26 years old Byram 23 years old (uncertainties related to his health and contractual situation after his entry contract) Toews 30 years old (impossible to have the certainty that he will re-sign with the team in 2 years) Manson 33 years old (played about 17 minutes per game in the season and playoffs with the team at the age of 30 and will be able to play 20 minutes and more at the age of 33?) JJ 37,5 years old – Height 6.01 – Weight 227 kg EJ 36 years old – Height 6.04… Read more »

Last edited 5 months ago by Alexander A.
Bob Neal

Your analysis is flawed bc neither JJ or EJ weigh anywhere close to 450 lbs. (225 kg x 2,2 lb/kg) which would create defensive mobility concerns. Let’s see what Joe does over the next couple of days before we debate some more. You got your wish that Darcy is gone. I think that was a good move if his agent was actually requesting $6 million for 6 years.

Yan Girard

Here’s an interesting article I found for you about Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Rasmus Sandin. He is a small defender who is far from having the mileage of Girard in the NHL. On the other hand, I believe that it is possible to draw a certain parallel with Girard’s situation and the author’s reflection is particularly interesting in my opinion.

Yan Girard

I was forgetting something about Bednar’s comments about Kuemper. Most of the time, a coach will protect his players. Rarely, the coach will throw his players under the bus and even less after winning the Stanley Cup. Then, Kuemper is without a contract for next year and the Avalanche are without the #1 goalie for next season. Under the circumstances, it is quite normal that the coach does not want to take options away from his GM. In the season, Kuemper was already struggling with puck spotting. I don’t see how it could have been otherwise during the series even… Read more »

Bob Neal

I haven’t heard the interview personally but the gist is that he was covering for Darcys bad performance in the first part of the finals. I think it shows Bednar is very close to his players and supports them. Nothing more nothing less. I still contend Darcy is a top ten goalie in the NHL. The theory that Bednar didn’t play Frankie in game 5? was if Frankie doesn’t play well then he has to go back to Darcy in the next game and destroyed his confidence by not playing him in this game. Pretty simple stuff. It’s all about… Read more »

Yan Girard

Throughout the season, the situation of the goalkeepers was very clear at the Avalanche. Kuemper was the #1 goalkeeper and Francouz was the #2 goalkeeper. Sport is first and foremost a mental part. Changing goalkeepers in the middle of a series is very risky considering that Kuemper was clearly labeled as the #1 goalkeeper. This can be perceived as a panic gesture on the part of the coach and reverberate over to the rest of the team. Francouz never had the pressure of being the #1 goalie in the NHL. You don’t know how he would react to this situation.… Read more »

Bob Neal

We totally agree on this perspective. I don’t think I would have made the same call but that’s why Bednar is a winning coach.

Yan Girard

In addition, tracking the puck is too important for a goaltender to have a coach play despite an injury that affects that aspect. If Kuemper was really inconvenienced in his eyes to affect his performance, Bednar would have started the Stanley Cup Final with Francouz in net. I have no doubt about that since I am convinced that Bednar had enough confidence in Francouz. If I’m wrong, it’s because Bednar ultimately didn’t have much confidence in Francouz to send an injured goalkeeper in his place.

Bob Neal

You’ll have to take the question up with Bednar bc that’s what he did given Darcy’s status.

Michael Connelly

The Sakics did NOT have to make that leap to be AMERICANs. Leaders are loud in action. Like Makar …

Very Honorable. Notable. Trustworthy and Loyal ❤️ ! A Dignified action that respects a country that made him worth over at least $100M.

Only just two years ago did Tom Brady ever make in a year what Joe made from ‘97 on. He was earning $19M a year back when that was U G E 🏦.

Last edited 5 months ago by Michael Connelly
Bob Neal

Congratulations to the Sakics for becoming dual citizens. What citizenship do their kids hold? I assume only American. That seems odd having different citizenship then your parents for your entire lives. Oh well, the Sakics will always be Denver’s favorite couple. I don’t envy Joes tasks over the next month. It sounds brain damaging but he’s the best guy to handle it.


A warm, caring, heart & soulful American Family Welcome, Debbie & Joe! You make us all proud for the gifts of you! Welcome Aboard!

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