Landeskog and O’Reilly: dynamic duo of the Avalanche
Ryan O’Reilly, left and Gabe Landeskog, right, are the new dynamic duo of the Colorado Avalanche. Getty Images
In the world, there are dynamic duos. Batman and Robin, Abbott and Costello, Peanut Butter and Jelly, anyone and bacon to name few. Dynamic duos are two entities that are strong by themselves but stronger when put together.
When it comes to the Colorado Avalanche, they have found their own dynamic duo in Ryan O’Reilly and Gabe Landeskog. When Landeskog won the Calder trophy for rookie of the year back in 2012, it was while he was playing with O’Reilly. That year, the other winger for that line changed. First it was Daniel Winnik but throughout the season it changed frequently. Everything on that line, in the Avs’ lineup overall changed that year. But not them.
Since then, the two have been separated by contract negotiations, injuries and lines. It was only when P.A. Parenteau went down with a knee sprain that the two were reunited on the wings of Paul Stastny and the results have rekindled the feelings of the 2011-12. Just like rekindling a lost love, it was wonderful, warm and cozy. It reminded us of how great things were.
Together they have not put up points in bunches but this isn’t about points, this is about play. Together they cycle the puck well, play tough defense and have an innate sense of where the other is on the ice. When he was reunited with O’Reilly, Landeskog returned to the simple play that won him the Calder. Landeskog got back to playing physical, making his presence known around the net.
Add in Paul Stastny whose strength lies in passing the puck and less in shooting it with a considerable helping of strong defense to go along with it, that makes a line that is a strength of the Avs. It is multi-dimensional line that plays strong defense, all 200 feet of the surface and will still put up points.
O’Reilly and Landeskog are a dynamic duo for the Avs, so dynamic that separating one from the other. Their parts are good on any line but they are stronger when they are put together. It took the Avs the lockout shortened season and the loss of Parenteau to remember how good they were together.
They should remember this when February 28 passes and the Avs once again have the options they had last year: sign O’Reilly or trade him. The Avs already invested in Landeskog by extending him seven years. They should do it again… by investing in O’Reilly.