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06-30-2012, 12:44 PM
vadim sharifijanov
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 14,937
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Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
In all honesty, Fleury had 11 points in the 1989 playoffs. Nieuwendyk, a guy who contstantly gets patted on the back for his playoff heroics (for some reason) had 14 points. Was there that much difference between the two?
obviously i'm a huge fleury supporter, and i'm probably as hard on nieuwendyk as anyone. i'd never have inducted nieuwendyk in a million years.

but in '89, yes there was that much of a difference between the two. nieuwendyk was an indispensable piece of arguably the greatest powerplay i've ever seen. a big part of what made that powerplay work so well was because nieuwendyk was phenomenal in front of the net. screening goalies, tipping shots and grabbing rebounds. and that powerplay was a huge reason why calgary steamrolled the league in the years around '89 and why they won the cup.

fleury was a very good rookie for the '89 flames, maybe even an exceptional one. he played on the lower lines, provided energy and a spark on a veteran team, did some second PP unit duty, and chipped in with some points when needed (not unlike, say, brad marchand with the bruins). but the points totals don't indicate the difference between those two guys that year, even if nieuwendyk's importance was mainly as a specialist.

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