This season has been one to forget for the Colorado Avalanche as a whole, but it’s especially been a tough one for Gabriel Landeskog. In his second season in the NHL, Landeskog has had a tough one, his first as captain of the Avalanche.
Landeskog won the Calder Trophy as the league’s top rookie last year. Most were expecting a jump to superstardom pretty quickly after a strong rookie campaign. But that hasn’t happened this year. Not that that’s entirely the fault of Landeskog.
A concussion slowed him early on. He missed a stretch of games at the beginning of the year and had a tough time gaining traction as far as his point production was concerned. Those struggles have continued throughout the entire season.
But Landeskog isn’t closing the book on his 2013 campaign quite yet. He’s looking to turn in a strong finish towards the season and help to develop some momentum towards next season. His performance over the last stretch of games indicates that he’s breaking out of his funk.
Landeskog has points in four of his last seven games. The Avalanche have taken points in all four of those games, with three of them coming out victorious. That parallel is pretty indicative of how important Landeskog is to the success of this team.
He’s getting more chances than he has for much of the year, with at least four shots in three of his last five games. He’s also been a physical presence in the lineup lately more so than he was earlier this season.
While this season is definitely one that the Avs will want to forget about pretty quickly, it’s important for a player like Landeskog to finish strong. Heading into the next season with his confidence level back where it was before this season could go a long way towards improving their fortunes next year.