This summer, NBC Sports’ social media team is conducting the #NHLGreatest initiative, designed for fans to choose the best player in each franchise’s history. Balloting was conducted through three platforms — Facebook, Twitter and Instagram — with thousands of votes being cast. The results of this initiative will be released throughout the month of August, in conjunction with PHT’s Team of the Day series.
1. Joe Sakic — 1,602 Votes
2. Patrick Roy — 1,235 Votes
3. Peter Forsberg — 576 Votes
Avalanche fans were presented with a tough choice, but in the end, the team’s long-time captain edged one of the NHL’s all-time greatest goaltenders. Sakic spent his entire career with the Quebec/Colorado franchise and is their all-time leader in games played, goals, assists, and a slew of other categories.
He also led the Avalanche to two Stanley Cup championships and won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 1996. While his playing career is done, he might have more championships left in him.
Rather than fade off into the sunset after he hung up his skates, Sakic has taken an active role in shaping the Avalanche as their executive vice president of hockey operations. He has become the public face of the management side of the team and, along with new head coach Patrick Roy, has played an integral role in breathing new life into the franchise.
Only time will tell if the moves he’s making will pay off, but for now the Sakic era is still going strong in Colorado.