Colorado Avalanche get terrible news on Gabriel Landeskog

DENVER, COLORADO - MAY 31: Gabriel Landeskog #92 of the Colorado Avalanche stretches for the puck against the Edmonton Oilers during the first period in Game One of the Western Conference Final of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Ball Arena on May 31, 2022 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
DENVER, COLORADO - MAY 31: Gabriel Landeskog #92 of the Colorado Avalanche stretches for the puck against the Edmonton Oilers during the first period in Game One of the Western Conference Final of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Ball Arena on May 31, 2022 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) /
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The Colorado Avalanche went most of the 2022-23 season without knowing the outcome of Gabriel Landeskog’s knee injury that he suffered during the Stanley Cup Playoffs. It turned out that he would miss the entire season, including the playoffs.

The news has just gotten so much worse on Tuesday.

Per the team, Landeskog is expected to miss the entire 2023-24 season after it was determined that he would need a knee cartilage transplant.

There was so much mystery regarding Landeskog’s injury but when the announcement was made that he would not play at all this season, word also got out that he could possibly miss the start of the 2023-24 season. The fact that it went from possibly missing the start of next season to potentially missing the entire upcoming season is just a huge blow.

How does the Gabriel Landeskog news affect the Colorado Avalanche salary cap?

Gabriel Landeskog will make $7 million during the 2023-24 season. Despite that being a relatively high number, it’s not even the highest on the team for the upcoming season with Nathan MacKinnon set to make $12.6 million and Cale Makar making $9 million.

That being said, since Landeskog will be placed on injured reserve, his $7 million cap hit won’t actually be an issue since salaries on injured reserve don’t count against the cap.

This allows the Avalanche some money to sign a free agent or trade for someone to help soften the blow of Landeskog’s absence and hopefully be able to replace him with a difference-maker.

Since Landeskog could miss the entire 2023-24 season, it provides a huge reason for the team to come to terms with one or more of their free agents-to-be in J.T. Compher, Lars Eller, Darren Helm and Alex Galchenyuk. The Avalanche could also take a look at other teams’ free agent centers, such as Alex Kerfoot, Jonathan Toews, Ryan O’Reilly, Sean Monahan or Jordan Staal.