Former Colorado Avalanche forward Milan Hejduk with his number 23 jersey in the Avalanche locker room at Pepsi Center on Wednesday, September 13, 2017 (Photo: Mike Rice/KOA NewsRadio).
For all 14 of his NHL seasons, Milan Hejduk joyfully put on his Colorado Avalanche number 23 sweater. Now, no future Avs player will ever do the same.
Wednesday, the club said it will retire Hejduk's number in a ceremony on January 6, 2018 before the team's game against the Minnesota Wild.
From 1998-2013, Hejduk racked up 805 points for the Avalanche, including 375 goals. His 50 goals in the 2002-2003 season was the most in the NHL and earned him the Maurice "Rocket" Richard trophy. It was the first time an Avalanche player had ever won that award.
Originally a fourth round draft pick of the Quebec Nordiques (which later became the Avalanche), Hejduk ranks in franchise history in both goals (375) and points (801), and is fifth in assists (430). He was also a member of the Avalanche team that won the Stanley Cup in the 2000-2001 season.
Milan spoke with reporters in the Avalanche locker room at Pepsi Center on Wednesday, Sept. 13.
Avalanche Executive Vice President/General Manager Joe Sakic, a former teammate of Hejduk's, also spoke with reporters on Wednesday, Sept. 13.