Best Av - 2007
Readers' Choice: Joe Sakic
Because the particulars of the NHL's 2005 collective-bargaining agreement forced the Avalanche to say so long to several fan favorites, the team needed newcomers to step up this year -- and Paul Stastny has done just that. A hometown hero thanks to his play on University of Denver championship squads, Stastny has gotten progressively stronger as the season's gone on; his efforts culminated in an astonishing twenty-game scoring streak that set a league record for a rookie. Along with Peter Budaj, who's all but replaced high-priced goalie/sieve Jose Theodore and fellow phenom Wojtek Wolski, Stastny is both an exciting part of the Avs' present and a key element of the team's future.