Top 50 Colorado Avalanche

The origin of the Colorado Avalanche begins in the World Hockey Association with the Quebec Nordiques, who first took the ice as a charter member in 1972.  The Nordiques were one of the most exciting teams in the WHA, loaded with French-Canadian talent, which translated into success.  Quebec would win the Avco Cup in 1977 and were finalists in 1975.

They would enter the NHL in 1979 when the two leagues merged, and in the 1980s with Michel Goulet and Peter Stastny, they remained exciting, though they could not make it very deep in the playoffs.  By the decade's end, they were basement dwellers and perpetually drafting first overall.  One such pick was Eric Lindros, who refused to play there, but they dealt him to the Philadelphia Flyers, and with what they were able to get in return, they were able to return to the winning side of the ledger.

In the mid-90s, the Nordiques were good again, but playing in a small market, the weak Canadian dollar, and the overall lack of revenue rendered the team as a financial loser.  They would be sold to a group in Denver and would relocate as the Colorado Avalanche.  With Joe Sakic, Peter Forsberg, and an incoming Patrick Roy, the franchise won their first Stanley Cup in 1996, their first year in their new home.  Colorado would win their second Cup in 2001.

They have yet to make the Finals since, but the city of Denver has proven to be one of the best fanbases in hockey.  It will likely remain that way for decades to come.


This list is up to the end of the 2018/19 season.

Note: Hockey lists are based on an amalgamation of tenure, traditional statistics, advanced statistics, playoff statistics, and post-season accolades.


Drafted 10th overall in 2015, Mikko Rantanen came with high expectations after a tremendous junior career in Finland.  Rantanen didn’t play much with the big club as a rookie, as he played mostly in the AHL, where he was the co-winner of the Rookie of the Year.  Rantanen would win…
Playing the last half of the 1980s with the Quebec Nordiques, Jeff Brown got his start in the NHL in La Belle Province.  The Defenseman was only with the parent club for 8 Games as a rookie, and he would be promoted for good midway through his second season (1985-86).
The reality of Jon Klemm is that he fought for every shift he got in pro hockey. Klemm was an undrafted Free Agent in 1991, and he would not play that much in the NHL for his first few seasons.  That might be true, but the Defenseman would keep plying…
Chris Drury was Quebec's third round pick in 1994, but rather than join the organization that drafted him, and he elected to join Boston University, where he would stay for four years.  As a senior, Drury would win the Hobey Baker Award as the nation's top player, and after that,…
After playing nine seasons in the NHL (Washington, Nashville, Atlanta, and Minnesota), Andrew Brunette signed as a Free Agent with the Colorado Avalanche in for the 2005-06 Season.  The Left Wing had already proven to be an adequate scorer, and in his first season in the Rocky Mountains, he secured…
Marian Stastny would join his two younger brothers, Anton, and Peter in the NHL before the 1981-82 season, and the three Czechoslovakian siblings would form one of the most feared lines in hockey.
Greg de Vries was traded from the Nashville Predators in October of 1998, and in his first two years with the Colorado Avalanche, he was a lower line Defenseman.  Still, he held his own end of the ice admirably.  The blueliner would gradually see more ice time, and de Vries…
Steven Finn was one of the few players who would stay with the Quebec Nordiques for over 600 Games, and he did so by using his toughness.  The Defensemen rarely scored; in fact, he never had a season where he reached 20 Points, but he was there to intimidate and…
Rejean Houle will always be best known in hockey for helping the Montreal Canadiens win five Stanley Cups and later as one of the worst General Managers they ever had.  That being said, Rejean Houle was with the team that would then become their arch-rivals for three seasons, when they…
Wally Weir went undrafted in the NHL, but after a year in the IHL, he got a shot with the Quebec Nordiques of the WHA when they signed him in 1976.  That was arguably his best season in pro hockey as he would post a career-best 20 Points and would…