Avalanche Skate: Concern Level Rising over Landeskog’s Long-Term Health?
I wrote the other day that the Colorado Avalanche really don’t seem to know if Gabriel Landeskog is coming back this season, and that may have played into their quiet trade deadline.
After today, I’m a little more convinced of that.
It was an optional practice day for the Avalanche, so I didn’t expect much to come from it in terms of news. Only a handful of skaters were on the ice, and none of them were the big names. But after practice, Jared Bednar spoke for over 16 minutes to the media about a variety of topics.
At the end of availability, Landeskog’s health came up. Could this current injury hamper him long-term, or are they confident when he’s back, he’ll be back for good?
“You never know,” Bednar said. “For me, you go through it, you do everything you can do. Am I a little bit concerned? Yeah. He hasn’t played all year. Do I think that he can easily come out of this and be fine? Yeah, he’s putting in the work. Only time will tell. You just don’t know.”
Kind of big news that the coach is a little concerned about the injury.
Then the question of Landeskog’s surgery from March of 2022 came up. Bednar mentioned that it was something that was bothering him at the time, and Landeskog wanted to get it done before the playoffs came up.
As for this current injury he’s dealing with?
“It’s unrelated,” Bednar said. “I’m sure it (the surgery last year) didn’t help, but it’s unrelated.”
As far as I’m aware, this is the first time that’s been confirmed by the organization, at least in a straight-forward manner. That is also some pretty big news.
Landeskog is in year two of the eight year contract he signed in the summer of 2022. This injury potentially hampering him long-term could have a massive ripple effect throughout the organization. Not only is he the leader of the team, but he’s also one of their top players. Not exactly an easy guy to replace both on and off the ice.
But the reality is, we just don’t know. Landeskog skated again before practice on Wednesday, and stayed on the ice for around 50 minutes. He seems to be making good progress to me, but what do I know?
Either way, there does seem to be concern within the organization around the injury, and how long it will linger. And I think that might explain why the Avalanche didn’t make any big moves. Why go all-in if one of your most important players may not return this season?
Other News and Notes
- There was no update on Kurtis MacDermid, who left last night’s game after sliding into the boards. He’s still being evaluated.
- The light workload for Alexandar Georgiev against San Jose could change how the Avalanche approach their goaltending situation this week. They’re evaluating it every day. “If he’s feeling good and rested, he’s going to play,” Bednar said.
- As for the other goaltender spot, it appears Jonas Johansson will be the backup for a while here. He’ll likely be the next backup to get a start for the team, and go on the road trip next week.
- Bednar mentioned that, while he liked the Finland trip, it also impacted their schedule the rest of the season in a negative way. “I think it was seven days off. That’s a day off a week or a day between instead of playing every night and back to backs. It’s mixing in a full day away from the rink, still getting a good practice day in for seven weeks.”