Where Landeskog Is At One Year Removed From His Surgery

Colorado Hockey Now

May 10 is a pretty meaningless date on the calendar for pretty much everyone, but it’s a significant day when it comes to Avalanche Captain Gabriel Landeskog.

One year ago, the 31 year old winger had cartilage transplant surgery on his right knee. Earlier this year, Avalanche general manager Chris MacFarland confirmed that the timeline for his return is 12-16 months. The organization has made it pretty clear that he was never going to return early, as they weren’t going to risk re-injuring it as that would send everything back to square one and likely end his career. However, we’ve made it this far, and Landeskog has been skating consistently for months now.

Now that we’ve entered the early part of his return timeline, is he any closer to joining the Avalanche at practice?

“Yeah, I don’t think he’s there yet,” Jared Bednar said on Friday. “He is making progress, though. The work he’s doing both on and off the ice, the intensity is gradually getting greater and greater. So that’s a positive sign. More resistance, harder work. You know, as much as it will allow while still being cautious.”

Landeskog has been traveling with the team for a while now, and this postseason, has gone on the ice for every morning skate in a hoodie and track pants, essentially acting as another coach on the ice. I’m sure he’s skating away from prying eyes, but we did catch a glimpse of him working hard last week at Family Sports.

I’ve gone on the record multiple times that I think it’s highly unlikely he returns to play this postseason. There’s just too much working against him. Returning during the playoffs when you haven’t played in almost two years would be a lot to ask from him.

The next step for Landeskog would be joining the team for practice, but who knows how much longer it would take for him to get up to speed at that point.

“I can’t answer that,” Bednar said when asked how much practice time he would need before playing a game. “Yeah, I don’t know. It’s too much of an unknown.”

So yes, I do believe we will see the Avalanche Captain playing in the NHL again someday. I just don’t think it will be this season.

Other Updates

  • Bednar confirmed today that Devon Toews is still feeling fine after the hit he took from Jamie Benn.
  • I asked Brandon Duhaime his thoughts on the hit and if it’s something the Avalanche keep in the back of their mind this series. As expected, he kind of skirted around it. The Avalanche aren’t the type to retaliate on stuff like this, but I’m sure a guy like Duhaime isn’t going to forget about a hit like that.
    • “I didn’t see the replay on the hit. They didn’t call it and they reviewed it, so I guess it was a clean hit. But that just shows the physical side of playoff hockey and that environment. You know, you got to bring that physicality, for sure.”

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