We have some sad news to report this afternoon.
According to reports that are now beginning to come out of the French language media in Montreal, legendary former National Hockey League general manager Pierre Lacroix has passed away. Unfortunately Lacroix was getting on in his years and as we know our elderly are the most vulnerable to the ongoing pandemic, and it would now seem that Lacroix is the latest victim of the dreaded coronavirus. Early reports suggest that Lacroix has died as a result of COVID-19 while in Las Vegas.
Although perhaps not a household name to the average NHL fan, long time fans of the Colorado Avalanche will remember Lacroix with nothing but love and admiration for the incredible success he brought that franchise as its president and general manager in the 90s and early 2000s. Not only did Lacroix capture a pair of Stanley Cup Championships with the franchise during that period, but he was involved in some of the most infamous trades in hockey history during his reign at the helm of the team.
The most famous deal of his career will of course be the franchise altering trade that saw goaltender Patrick Roy leave his hometown team, the Montreal Canadiens, and head to Colorado where he would write an entirely new chapter to his own legendary career. Lacroix was also instrumental in other historic trades, including the one that brought Bruins legend Ray Bourque to Colorado as well as the trade that brought Los Angeles Kings star Rob Blake to the Avalanche, eventually capturing a Stanley Cup with all 3 men in the lineup.
Lacroix was effectively general manager of the franchise for 12 straight years, an impressive feat in its own right in the cutthroat National Hockey League, having started as general manager of the Quebec Nordiques in 1994 and remaining in that role with the franchise until 2006 when he would take on the role of president full time. He remained in that role until 2013 when he was replaced by one of the men he helped lead to great success, current Avalanche president and general manager Joe Sakic.
Prior to his career as a GM in the NHL Lacroix also worked as a player agent, with his most famous client ironically enough being the biggest piece in his most infamous trade, Patrick Roy.
We take solace in the fact that Lacroix lived a full and wonderful life, and we would like to extend our condolences to his family and loved ones.