In just about 24 hours, barring any last-second pen-to-paper, Avs captain and top-line winger Gabe Landeskog, along with Vezina finalist goaltender Philipp Grubauer, will both officially become unrestricted free agents.

That’s a distressing, unsettling idea for many an Avalanche fan. But don’t panic on me now, my nervous Avs supporter. Not yet, at least. 

The idea of losing long-time captain, media darling and communitarian, Gabe Landeskog, is heart-wrenching. And in a world where strong, reliable goaltending is oft hard to come by, the idea of losing your Vezina-caliber netminder is pretty gut-wrenching, as well. 

But GM Joe Sakic is no addlebrain. Stubborn? Maybe. But you have to be as a general manager. You can’t accept your FAs’ first offer, especially in a world where the covid-crunched salary cap is putting backs against the wall. 

The cap situation, mind you, is particularly unfortunate for the Avalanche, who, because of bonuses paid out to Cale Makar and Alex Newhook this past year, will be penalized this upcoming season due to salary cap overages.