Colorado Avalanche: 5 Lessons from the Road Trip

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Oct 30, 2015; Raleigh, NC, USA; Colorado Avalanche forward Matt Duchene (9) before the game against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Colorado Avalanche 3-2. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Duchene is the Most Popular Avalanche

About the time the road trip began, rumors began circulating that Matt Duchene was on the trade block. At one point it was even reported that Avalanche GM Joe Sakic had called Ottawa Senators GM Bryan Murray about moving Duchene.

Avalanche fans lost their minds. The public outcry was immediate, it was prolonged, and it was heated.

Some people, myself included, tried to look at the trade possibility objectively. Truthfully, though, Duchene is just too popular.

Popular enough that even Joe Sakic and Patrick Roy were receiving blowback.

ICYMI: Duchene Controls his own Fate

There are a lot of popular players on the team, and some that seem too sacred to trade. (Ok, only Nathan MacKinnon is in that second group.) No one wants to see Gabriel Landeskog go, and you’d be hard-pressed to find Avalanche fans who would be willing to part with Tyson Barrie or Erik Johnson.

But Matt Duchene carries a special place in our hearts. He was our highest draft pick at the time. He’s supposed to be our franchise player. He bleeds burgundy and blue, and has since before he even got picked.

The Duchene trade may still happen somewhere down the road, but the front offices have to realize how wildly unpopular it will be with Avs Nation. The return would have to be astronomical to not be labeled a failure.

Next: Gabriel Landeskog