Before Joe Sakic, the greatest Quebec Nordique was Peter Stastny. Over his long career Sakic uprooted Stastny as the face of a franchise that moved to Colorado. But the allure of Rookie of the Year, Stastny, and the reunion with his brothers, Anton and Marian, has always been a story line for Colorado/Quebec.
The Stastny brothers, especially Anton and Peter, were the face of the franchise in Quebec. Peter still sits second in points and assists behind Super Joe. Anton sits sixth in both categories. Peter Stastny was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1998.
The story line of the Avalanche drafting Peter’s son, Paul Stastny, from the University of Denver has always been a great one. From the Hulls to the Howes, the father-son relationship in hockey has always been special. Stastny lived up to his father his first year, he holds the record for the longest rookie point streak at 20 games.
In his first three healthy seasons, Paul Stastny topped the 70-point mark each time. In 2007-2008 he had 71 points despite an appendectomy. He only played 45 games in 2008-2009 and had a tough year, but rebounded after that scoring a career high 79 points the next year.
Today, Stastny remains the highest paid player on the team from a five year 33 million dollar contract that runs through the 2013-2014 season. Last year, his production dropped significantly. He had only 57 points in 74 games. Not nearly enough for the team’s top center.
This year, Stastny has been even more invisible on the ice, with only 31 points in 50 games. On pace for about 50 points this season, that would be the lowest of any healthy season Stastny has had.
With the Avalanche entering the out of control spiral the team witnessed last year, it appears time to move Stastny. While he has been with the team for a long time and represents so much family history, it seems that he has already peaked with the Avalanche organization.
Statsny may still find his game somewhere else in the National Hockey League, but the Avalanche have three centers, Duchene, O’Reilly and Galiardi, who can fill the top two lines. The Avalanche are most likely not going to make the playoffs and are far from being contenders. They need to build for a great future and Stastny is working his way out of those plans.