Denver, it’s time to party.

It has been six long years since Denver hosted the kind of raucousness that will roll from Union Station to Civic Center Park today in honor of the Colorado Avalanche’s 2022 Stanley Cup. Back in 2016 after the Denver Broncos won Super Bowl 50, more than a million — a million! — Broncos fans flooded the streets of Denver in a sea of orange.

Though it’d be quite the accomplishment for Avs fans to reach the million mark, we anticipate diehard and bandwagon Avalanche fans alike will descend on downtown and make in a sea of burgundy.

Beyond the obvious chamber-of-commerce benefits of Thursday’s coronation near the Capitol, there are the memories, characteristics and life lessons that for Avs fans will timelessly accompany any waxing nostalgic of the 2022 champions. And what are the traits that we Coloradans will always associate with the first Avs title winner in 21 years — and third in the franchise’s history in the Centennial State? Patience and confidence.

As Gazette sports writer Vinny Benedetto wrote Tuesday, Avs head coach Jared Bednar got off to a slow start leading this franchise, with just 22 wins five years ago, in the 2017 season. They struggled on both offense and defense, last in the NHL in both goals scored and goals allowed.

But Bednar built, via a methodical process, a burgeoning champion due to young, committed talent such as Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen, Gabriel Landeskog and Cale Makar — all who were younger than 24 five years ago.

Adding to the patience the Avalanche franchise showed in recent years was the steely confidence this year’s incarnation of the Avs carried down the home stretch of the Stanley Cup Playoff run. It’s this poise under pressure that Avs fans love about the 2022 team — and that Coloradans even apply to their own lives. Sure, it may be illogical at times, but rabid sports fans often allow for the good, bad and ugly of their favorite team’s fortunes to influence their own dispositions.

In this moment of reaching the rocky mountaintop of the NHL for the first time in two decades, it’s only appropriate Avs fans take to heart all of the sports cliches that, though corny, powered these players and this franchise to glory.

Sometimes it’s important to remember that cliches — like “leave no doubt,” and “find a way” — are cliches for a reason: they work. And if you approach more moments in your life with attention to detail and belief in the process benefiting you, it much more often than not will.

The Avs practiced what they preached each game in recent months, brimming with confidence that, as Gazette sports columnist Paul Klee wrote Monday, is only maybe matched by the 1998 Super Bowl champion Denver Broncos, who went 17-2.

In a time when so many put victimhood on a pedestal as a badge of honor, there’s nothing wrong with overflowing with confidence. These Avs did so, expecting to win, while carrying a big hockey stick on a 16-4 march through the playoffs that was one loss shy of the best postseason mark ever.

Considering all that, maybe it’s not too late for you to hop in your car and help reach the 1 million mark in honor of the Avs?

Gazette editorial board

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