Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 8/22/13
Youth is longer an excuse for the Colorado Avalanche. Stocked with high draft picks, the Avs are entering a period where young players are no longer prospects that the organization will patiently coddle.  This season marks a point where  youngsters will be counted on to deliver, and the jump starts with Matt Duchene and captain Gabriel Landeskog. Both Duchene and Landeskog recently signed  lengthy extensions with the Avs, Duchene for 5 years worth $30 million and Ladeskog for 7 years, $39 million. The youngsters have been introduced to big money. Matt Duchene and captain Gabriel Landeskog will be expected to lead the Colorado Avalanche for years to come. Entering his fifth season in the NHL, Duchene, 22, is now heading into what the Avalanche expect to be be the prime of his career.  Duchene, the third pick in the 2009 draft, has had ups and downs since entering the NHL but seemed to elevate his game last season.  While only playing 47 due to the lockout, Duchene proved to be stronger on his skates than in past years, which showed in his puck control on the offensive end and  was a factor against opposing players in his own end.  Duchene racked up 17 goals and 43 points last season, and the Avalanche will need him to further progress his consistency next season.  The Avs will need him to come close to a scoring at least a point per game and be a leading offensive force, much like the 2009 first overall pick John Tavares is for the New York Islanders. Duchene will get a glorious opportunity to put points on the board since head coach Patrick Roy announced Duchene will be the team’s first line center, playing on a line with P.A. Parenteau and Ryan O’Reilly.  Duchene and Parenteau showed great chemistry playing on the same line last season, and another year of experience should bode well for the Avs. Landeskog, 20, is the youngest captain in the NHL and second youngest to be appointed captain in NHL history.  With the captaincy, he’ll not only be expected to lead a young team, but grow up fast himself.  Physically, Landeskog has proved he belongs in the NHL.  He invites physical play and hasn’t looked like a boy playing a man’s game, a problem many young professional athletes faces when arriving at the highest level of competition.  After a disappointing season where he only scored nine goals and 17 points in 36 games, the Avs will need Landeskog to provide a more consistent offensive punch this season while playing on the second line with Paul Stastny and the newly acquired Alex Tanguay. The Avs should be expecting immediate and significant contributions from their newly extended forwards, and locking them up for the future was simply a smart move on behalf of the Avalanche management.  With contract discussions out of the Duchene and Landeskog can now focus on the ice.

This article first appeared on isportsweb.com and was syndicated with permission.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Sam Mitchell reportedly candidate to join Pelicans’ coaching staff

Warriors GM indicates Steve Kerr still isn’t ready to return

Taylor Hall says it was “nice to finally see” the Edmonton Oilers eliminated

Report: Jets to hire female defensive backs coach

Vince Young officially inks contract with CFL team

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jason Witten: Bill Parcells is getting soft in his old age

Braves make up with fan ejected by security for interference

David Price to start for Red Sox Monday against Chicago

David Price to start for Red Sox Monday against Chicago

Magic Johnson indicates Brandon Ingram is Lakers’ only untradeable player

Congress drafted a bill that could legalize online sports betting; how soon might it happen?

Three Up, Three Down: Some surprises way out (NL) West

The 'Let's go to the videotape!' quiz

It’s our civic duty to stop attending Super Bowls in new stadiums

Box Score 5/25: The Cavaliers look to close out the Celtics

The 'Farewell to the Manu, the Myth, the Legend' quiz

Box Score 5/24: Craig Anderson saves the Senators

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Dejounte Murray gets his calls blocked twice

It's reality check time for the Texas Rangers

Box Score 5/23: Preds, Warriors move on to respective Finals

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Three Up, Three Down: Some surprises way out (NL) West

The 'Let's go to the videotape!' quiz

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

The 'Farewell to the Manu, the Myth, the Legend' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Dejounte Murray gets his calls blocked twice

It's reality check time for the Texas Rangers

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker