Avalanche retire number of longtime captain Joe Sakic

The Colorado Avalanche have retired the No. 19 of longtime captain Joe Sakic in a ceremony before the season opener against San Jose.

Joe Sakic waves during a ceremony to mark his retirement from the Colorado Avalanche before the team's home opener of the NHL season against the San Jose Sharks in Denver on Thursday.

DENVER — The Colorado Avalanche have retired the No. 19 of longtime captain Joe Sakic in a ceremony before the season opener against San Jose.

The team also raised a banner bearing his name and number to the rafters Thursday night at Pepsi Center. Sakic’s number becomes just the third retired since the Avalanche relocated to Denver in 1995, joining Patrick Roy (33) and Ray Bourque (77).

The crowd gave Sakic numerous ovations during a lengthy ceremony that featured a look back on his career, video highlights, and a speech from president Pierre Lacroix.

Sakic announced his retirement on July 9 after a 20-year career. He left the game among the NHL’s career scoring leaders, winding up eighth in points (1,641), 11th in assists (1,016) and 14th in goals (625).

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