- yes, Kaberle fits right in as a question mark (being that he never did anything else noteworthy)
- Brashear really is among the best one-dimensional goons out there. I might actually consider him there's one I am really interested in actually. We are at the point where you could get away with an actual goon as your goon. I'd have to look closer to say whether I prefer him to Tim Hunter. Hunter has the winning history, at least.
I will describe these picks in greater detail later, but my picks are Mike Zuke and Wayne Hillman.
5x 50 Point Scorer
1x Top 10 Goals (10)
3x 30 Goal Scorer
78th on list of 100 Greatest NY Rangers
404 points in 646 career NHL games
7th in All Star Voting among LW(78-79)
5th in All Star Voting among LW(77-78)
Pat Hickey played his junior hockey with the Hamilton Red Wings of the OHA from 1970 to 1973. He was drafted by the New York Rangers but opted instead to join the Toronto Toros of the WHA since they offered the prospects of big-league play while the Rangers only offered a ticket to join the Providence Reds of the AHL.
With the Toros, Hickey became a big hit on the scoreboard and among the fans. As one of hockey's fastest skaters, his long shock of blond hair tailed in the wind as he raced up ice, exciting fans. Few wingers could move as quickly either from a standing start or in added acceleration.
During his two seasons of World Hockey, he matured into an excellent two-way player. Such development didn't go unnoticed by the Rangers who still held his NHL rights. They were willing to pay Hickey more money than the impoverished Toros could afford.
So in 1975-76, he made his debut on Broadway. Initially, he joined Walt Tkaczuk and Bill Fairbairn on a line but then switched to a trio that included Rick Middleton and Derek Sanderson. It wasn't until his third year, however, that Hickey finally caught fire, netting 40 goals by the end of the 1977-78 campaign.
Wembley selects 6'4 210 lbs. center Jiri Dopita, one of the most productive Czechs on the international stage with 40 points in 12 major international tournaments, including the 1996 and 2004 world cups. He scored a goal on the 1998 Olympic gold medal team and scored a couple in world championship golds in 1996 and 2001, but his individual peak was leading the Czechs to the world championship gold in 2000 as a tourney all-star with 11 points. He went on to win the Golden Stick Award in 2001, the highest trophy an ice hockey player can get in the Czech Republic, after being the Czech league MVP in 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, twice leading the league in goals despite his propensity to pass. He also was the Czech league playoff MVP three times, helping his teams (four different ones) win the Extraliga championship a grand total of seven times, most of them as captain.
The knock on him is that in the NHL he only scored 33 points in 73 games after The Hockey News had named him the best player outside the NHL. Of course, he was 33 years old, only got third line minutes and soon got a knee injury. He had twice been drafted by NHL clubs, in 1992 and 1998, but it wasn't until 2001 that he decided to come over. Had he come over earlier, and had he gotten first line minutes with decent wingers to set up, the pivot might have been an NHL star.
Jeez, has anyone here even heard of this guy? He sure was a good player for a few seasons. In 80, 81, 82 with St. Louis, he scored 185 points in 219 games. The downside? The rest of his career in the NHL is just 236 games long and contains 97 points. (he also played 2 WHA seasons, scoring 57 points in 1978)
Zuke was a noted defensive player, placing 10th in Selke voting in 1981. Scouting reports also confirm his excellent two-way play. He was a true special teams specialist, scoring a measly 0.32 adjusted ESPPG but 0.22 more on the PP, as well as killing 37% of his team's penalties, for teams 7% better than average on the PK.
Biggest downfall for Zuke? His short career in the NHL. He played a full college career, so he was 23 when he became a full-time WHA player and 24 when he got to the NHL, but they made him have a CHL apprenticeship too. He was a college star too, making the WCHA all-star team in 1974, 1975, and 1976, scoring 310 points in 163 college games.
Originally Posted by Hockey Scouting Report 1981
Instant fan favourite for scrappy play... they call it Zukeclear energy... mainstay of Blues' superb PK unit... also used extensively on PP...
Originally Posted by Hockey Scouting Report 1982
consistent, reliable worker-type... excellent defensive player... typical of players who have turned the Blues around with industrious, never-quit approach.
At the end of the 1973 seaon, when Hillman left the NHL with his brother Larry, Wayne Hillman was 27th all-time in games played by defensemen. In fact, 88 of the top 90 players on this list are already drafted. Lasting in the NHL this long is an indication that Wayne Hillman was a very strong and valuable player.
If you ignore Larry's massive contribution to the Leafs' 1967 Cup win, Wayne's NHL career isn't too far off from his. However, Larry's AHL accomplishments when buried in the minors by the deep Leafs easily trump Wayne's single 2nd team all-star nod there.
Larry Was not a great point producer from the blueline at his best, but did once place 9th in the NHL among defensemen. Just over half his career was post-expansion for the Rangers, North Stars and Flyers, and during that time he was a special teams beast, playing 40% of powerplays and 38% of penalty kills, and averagd 20.37 minutes per game. In 1970, Philadelphia was just a 58-point team but Hillman was far and away their icetime leader, playing an estimated 29.18 minutes, good for 7th in the NHL.
Originally Posted by 1970 Hockey Card
a robust checker.
Last edited by seventieslord: 01-23-2011 at 12:59 PM.
Wembley selects the speedy Ladislav Nagy, 10th in NHL goals per game in 2003/04, 7th in NHL assists per game in 2005-06, scoring 220 points in 266 NHL games over a four-season span as the Coyotes' top line left winger. Injuries limited him to just one full NHL season over his career. Internationally, in 2002 he helped Slovakia win its only gold in the world championships but shone brighter in other medal wins, scoring 4 goals at each of the 1999 world juniors and 2003 world championships.
Has great imagination with the puck and the hands to score plenty of goals. Shoots the puck from anywhere on the ice and owns a bit of a mean streak.
Taken 177th overall by the St. Louis Blues in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft, Nagy came to North America to play a year of junior. He made an immediate impact with 71 goals for the Halifax Mooseheads of the QMJHL then joined the AHL's Worcester Ice Cats for a few Calder Cup playoff games.
A member of the CHL's All-Rookie Team in 1998-99 and Slovakia's World Junior Team, Nagy split his first two professional seasons with St. Louis and Worcester working on his overall game. In March 2001, Nagy was part of the package sent to the Phoenix Coyotes for Keith Tkachuk. In his first full season in the NHL, Nagy scored 23 goals and 42 points before surpassing those numbers the following year.
A member of Slovakia's gold medal World Championship team in 2002, Nagy continued his goal scoring prowess in 2002-03 with 22 goals, while almost doubling his assist totals to 35 and finishing the season with a career high 57 points. In 2003-04, Nagy was plagued by injuries, yet managed to surpass his career high in goals with 24 and finished with 52 points, despite playing in only 55 games.
In the 2005-06 NHL regular season, Nagy would come within one point of tying his career high in point total while competing in 51 games with the Coyotes. The following season was the last on Nagy's contract with the Coyotes, and the club was unable to re-sign both him and Captain Shane Doan before the off-season. As a result, Nagy was dealt to the Dallas Stars for winger Mathias Tjarnqvist and a first-round pick in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.
Wembley selects left winger Jack Shill, who as a Marlie held the record for fastest hat trick in hockey at 32 seconds, until Mosienko shattered the record exactly two decades later, in 1952. He was a utility forward filling in on a line with Conacher and Primeau, with Apps and Drillon and with Gallinger and Guidolin. An injury knocked him out of the big league, though he played in the first AHL all-star game, and his NHL Leafs jersey did sell for $7000. Shill's great moment in the NHL came as a contributor in the Blackhawks 1938 Stanley Cup championship with some key contributions, leading all players in PIMs, setting up a series winning goal against the Americans and scoring an insurance goal against the Leafs in the Final.
... an excellent skater... Jack had an assist in the deciding game against the Americans but saved his best moment for the clincher in the Final. Chicago went up 1-0 when Cully Dahlstrom banged home a Shill rebound, but Drillon tied it for Toronto shortly after. Late in the second period, the Leaf defense got crossed up and Chicago got a second goal. A minute later, Jack Shill chipped the puck high into the air from near his own blue line. It came down behind the Leaf defense and took a funny hop on Broda, beating him five-hole. Chicago would add a fourth goal in the third and that was all she wrote. It was Chicago's last Cup until 1961. It was also Jack's only NHL playoff goal.
Wembley selects right wing superpest Matthew Barnaby, who played on Mark Messier's wing for three years as a Ranger, a part time top-6 role player and regular bottom-6 performer, scoring 300 points in 834 NHL games, scoring 7 goals and 13 points in the 1998 NHL playoffs, leading all Sabres in points to Game 6 of the conference finals. He twice led the NHL in PIMs and seven times was top-10 in PIMs. He was listed as number one on TSN's top-10 all-time list of agitators, and certainly he had a reputation for getting under the skin of opponents. He was popular in his own dressing room and villified in the opponent's room.
The best way to describe Matthew Barnaby as a player is as the game's ultimate pest. His style of play is in your face, aggressive to the point of infuriation. He's brash, cocky and arrogant. He taunts opposing players, talks trash, and fights just about anyone who will pay attention to him long enough to drop the gloves. There's very little middle ground where he's concerned. Barnaby's fans love him. Everyone else in and around the league can't stand him.
Wembley selects hard-working, defensively responsible Kevin Miller, who scored 20+ goals five times over a six-year period with Detroit, St. Louis and San Jose. Internationally, he scored 4 points in the 1988 Olympics and 5 points in the 1991 Canada Cup. He had led Michigan State to the NCAA championship as the team's co-captain, top assist getter and penalty taker. If he had played for an NHL contender during his best six year career span, he might have had all-time recognition as a bottom-6 role player.
Since entering the NHL in 1988-89, centre Kevin Miller has been a solid two-way performer in the pros. His versatility made him a sought after commodity who saw action with nine different teams before heading to Europe in 2000-01.
Born in Lansing, Michigan, Miller was chosen 202nd overall by the New York Rangers in 1984 after a strong year with the Redford Royals of the Great Lakes Junior League. He then spent four years at Michigan State and a season with the U.S. national team in 1987-88. Miller's amateur career culminated with an appearance at the Calgary Olympics.
The young forward split his first two pro seasons between the IHL and the Rangers. After scoring 44 points in 63 games in 1990-91 Miller was traded to the Detroit Red Wings. He lasted a year in Motown where he scored 20 goals in 1991-92 and started the next year in Washington.
In November 1992, Miller was sent to the St. Louis Blues for Paul Cavallini. He registered consecutive 20-goal seasons and played solid defensive hockey for his new club before he was traded to the San Jose Sharks. Late in the 1995-96 the Pittsburgh Penguins acquired him as they prepared for the post-season. Miller was one of the club's steadiest workers and helped them come within a game of reaching the finals.
After brief stints with the Chicago Black Hawks, New York Islanders, and Ottawa Senators, Miller found himself with the IHL's Grand Rapids Gryphons in 1999-2000. During the post-season, he topped all skaters with eleven goals and 18 points while helping the club win the Turner Cup. Miller sought a new challenge in 2001-02 when he joined the HC Davos club of Switzerland. He made an immediate impact by leading the Swiss Elite league with 29 goals in 36 games before making a return to North America in 2003-04 with the Detroit Red Wings organization.
Wembley selects 6'3, 215 lbs. left winger Sergio Momesso, a role player who skated on the Skrudland line in Montreal, on the Oates line in St. Louis and on the Ronning line in Vancouver, scoring 345 points in 710 NHL games. He played on the powerplay and did a lot of physical work and checking in the corners. In the Canucks 1994 Stanley Cup run, he led the team in playoff PIMs, scored 3 goals and 7 points that postseason, including an overtime goal against Dallas.
Blessed with size and a mean streak to go with a soft touch around the net, Momesso played his junior hockey for the Shawinigan Cataractes of the QMJHL, and was drafted 27th overall in the 1983 NHL Entry Draft by his hometown Montreal Canadiens. He made his NHL debut the following season at the age of just 18, playing a single game for the Canadiens, but remained in junior for most of the following two seasons, during which time he began to dominate the QMJHL and establish himself as a blue-chip NHL prospect. In 1984–85, he recorded 56 goals and 146 points in just 64 games, along with 216 penalty minutes, and was named QMJHL Player of the Year.
For the 1985–86 NHL season, Momesso made the Habs' roster out of training camp and meshed well on a line with Brian Skrudland and Mike McPhee, recording an impressive 8 goals and 15 points in his first 24 games to start his career. However, he suffered a knee injury in December 1985 against the Boston Bruins that shelved him for the rest of the season; it also cost him an opportunity to engrave his name on the Stanley Cup as Montreal went on to win that season. Momesso would spend two more seasons in Montreal but never recaptured the form of his rookie year, battling injuries and frustrating the team with his inconsistency. At the conclusion of the 1987–88 season, he was dealt to the St. Louis Blues in a multi-player trade.
After a mediocre first season in St. Louis during which he recorded 26 points in 53 games, Momesso's career took an upward turn in 1989–90 when he was placed on a line with superstar sniper Brett Hull and playmaking centre Adam Oates. Spending much of the season on the Blues' top line, Momesso turned in the most productive year of his career, finishing with 24 goals and 32 assists for 56 points, along with 199 penalty minutes. However, he would lose his spot on the top line in 1990–91, and recorded just 10 goals through his first 59 appearances.
Vancouver CanucksAt the trade deadline in 1991, Momesso was dealt to the Vancouver Canucks in a monster six-player deal along with Geoff Courtnall, Cliff Ronning, and Robert Dirk for Garth Butcher and Dan Quinn. The deal would prove to be a heist in favour of Vancouver, as all four players they acquired would be significant contributors for several seasons, and is still regarded as perhaps the best trade in Canuck franchise history. Momesso got his Canuck career off to a fine start, recording 6 goals in 11 games to help the team on a successful late-season push to qualify for the playoffs.
Momesso's stay in Vancouver, although up-and-down at times, would be the longest stop of his career. He continued to show glimpses of his ability to be an above-average power forward, but would frustrate with stretches of ineffective, uninspired play and was prone to undisciplined penalties. Through his first two seasons in Vancouver, he played largely on a line with Jim Sandlak and his former St. Louis teammmate Cliff Ronning, with the two large wingers used to create space for the diminutive Ronning. (As a result, the line would be known as 'the Twin Towers'). In 1991–92, he played some of the best hockey of his career to finish with 20 goals and 43 points despite missing 26 games due to injury. In 1992–93, he had another solid year to finish with 18 goals and 38 points, as well as a career-high 200 penalty minutes.
1993–94 would be a struggle for Momesso, as he struggled and finished with just 27 points, his lowest total since 1989, and was a target for substantial criticism from Vancouver fans and media. However, he redeemed himself in the 1994 playoffs, as his strong physical play on a line with Martin Gelinas and Nathan LaFayette was one of the catalysts for Vancouver's run to the Stanley Cup Finals. Along the way, he scored what was probably the biggest goal of his career, an overtime winner against the Dallas Stars.
After a solid performance during the lockout-shortened 1994–95 season with 25 points in 48 games, Momesso was dealt to the Toronto Maple Leafs for Mike Ridley. However, his career would go on a downward spiral after leaving Vancouver. He never found his legs in Toronto and was dealt after only 54 games to the New York Rangers, finishing the season with just 11 goals and 23 points in 73 games. In 1996–97, his production dried up completely; dealt mid-season back to the St. Louis Blues, he finished the year with just 1 goal and 4 points in 40 games.
Left-winger Sergio Momesso was a bruising forward with an above average touch around the net. Throughout his career, he tantalized coaches and fans with hints that he was developing into an impact player only to enter into a slump for long stretches.
Prior to the March 1991 trade deadline. Momesso was shipped to the Vancouver Canucks where he played his best hockey. Coach Pat Quinn used him on the power play and as a checker to keep his head in the game and he responded with consistent play. In 1994, he registered seven points and provided leadership when Vancouver reached the Stanley Cup finals for the second time in franchise history. Late in his career, Momesso suited up for the Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Rangers, and St. Louis for a second time.
Wembley selects 6'2 center Chris Oddleifson, the first-ever captain of the Canucks who led Vancouver to their first division title in 1975. He was the team's top scoring center for three consecutive seasons. He is 39th on the Canucks greatest players of all time list.
He was a playmaker who showed a lot of grit and leadership.
Oddleifson was the Seal's first round pick (10th overall) in the 1970 amateur draft. He never played for the Seals as he was quickly traded off to the Boston Bruins. He had been basically unnoticable in Boston but on this night he exploded. Oddleifson scored 4 goals in leading the Bruins to an 8-1 thumping of the Oakland based team.
"You know what really bugged me though?" remembers Oddleifson years later. "In the paper the next morning the headline read 'Esposito Held Off Scoresheet!'" Talk about injustice! Chris Oddleifson's best game and it was nothing more than a footnote and largely overlooked.
"Those were the years of course that Esposito was winning scoring titles. So when he failed to tally in an 8-1 game, that was big news" explained Chris.
The Vancouver Canucks noticed however, and they traded for Chris on February 7, 1974, sending Bobby Schmautz the other way. Oddleifson only played 55 games in Boston, and scored only 6 other times in addition to his 4 goal game. He finished the year quietly in Vancouver, scoring 3 goals and 8 points in 21 games.
"Oddy" enjoyed a fine career once he arrived on Canada's west coast. He played 6 solid years in Vancouver, his finest being in 1974-75 and 1975-76. He scored a career high 16 goals in each year, and had 51 points and 62 points respectively. The lanky center was a good playmaker and skater with a touch of a mean streak.
That 1974-75 season was especially special for Oddy and Canuck fans as they captured their first division championship.
"That championship year, everything just went so smoothly. Smitty (Goalie Gary Smith) had six shutouts and we ended up with 86 points."
As the decade progressed, Oddleifson's point production steadily declined but his popularity in Vancouver remained high.
* "Scud" was well known for shotblocking in Pittsburgh
* 2nd in Pens' blueline minutes on 2009 Stanley Cup team
* averages 19+ minutes a game over 7 NHL years of work
* one of the NHL's most underrated defensive defensemen
Keeps the game simple on most nights and has exemplary team skills. Blocks shots and is most effective in penalty-killing situations.
On June 12, 2009, Scuderi won the Stanley Cup with the Pittsburgh Penguins. Scuderi made a crucial play late in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals, with the Penguins hanging on to a 2–1 lead over the Detroit Red Wings. Scuderi stopped a shot at a wide open net by Johan Franzén with his stick, then stopped Franzén again with his skate. Scuderi became the first Long Island native to have his name engraved on the Stanley Cup.
* 1982-83 Jack Adams Award
* 1982 AHL Calder Cup championship
* 1972 Memorial Cup championship
* 1981 Memorial Cup Finalist
Tessier may be best remembered for a quote during the 1983 Campbell Conference finals. After the Black Hawks gave up 14 goals in falling behind 2–0 to the Edmonton Oilers, Tessier fumed that Chicago players needed "heart transplants". The quip failed to inspire the Hawks, who dropped the final two games of the series at Chicago Stadium, marking the second consecutive year Chicago lost in the Campbell Conference final.
10x Top 10 PIM
245 points in 1,020 career NHL games
98 career playoff games
He was unmistakably a tough guy, with under-appreciated hockey skills, too. He got into 100s of fights, and is proud to be the Leafs all time penalty minutes leader. But he is also proud to be one of the most popular players in Leafs history.
Domi was unlike any other hockey player in Leafs history. He occupied a space in Toronto's sporting conscience normally reserved for superstars. He was no star, in fact he was often loathed as a hockey cementhead, but he was inextricably woven into the fabric of the city. He was more than a hockey player - he was a celebrity.
Part of Domi's charm was his undying commitment to charity and children in the city. He was also a popular fixture on Bay Street where he won over many in the business crowd not with his celebrity but his own acumen. NHL tough guys don't normally get confused with the intellectual crowd, but Domi was very much a savvy and intelligent businessman, turning his million dollar hockey paychecks into a whole new stratosphere as the CEO of his own company to overseas mergers and acquisitions.
Domi never forgot his roots though, and he knows he owes it all to hockey and his willingness to quite literally fight his way to the top.
He is quick to credit junior coach Dick Todd for his success, too.
"I was fortunate to play (Junior A) in Peterborough. The reason I'm where I am today is because I played there for Dick Todd. There's no ifs and buts," Domi says. Todd put Domi on the top line with Mike Ricci, then the best player in all of Canadian junior hockey, and scouts realized Domi could play too.
"I went from a guy who couldn't play -- from sitting in the stands one year, to playing on the first line and being drafted 27th overall by the Leafs."
After getting a chance to play just two games with the Leafs before he was traded to New York. In total he spent six years with the Rangers and Winnipeg Jets, cementing his reputation of cement hands. Desite being just 5'10" tall he fought all of the NHL's toughest customers, most notably Bob Probert.
But in his heart he always a Toronto boy, and he was thrilled to rejoin the Leafs in 1994. He stayed for more than a decade, turning down more lucrative job offers from other NHL teams (most notably from his good friend Mario Lemieux in Pittsburgh) to remain a Leaf forever.
Domi's amazing story quite literally comes from almost nothing. His family fled from their native Albania. His father John was hit in the head with a bullet trying to escape, but he made it to Canada and started a family. Tie (his given name is Tahir) grew up fighting, quite literally, on and off the ice. It was never easy, but persevered and turned his life into a great success story.
All in all Tie Domi played in 1020 NHL games, scoring 104 goals and 245 points as well as accumulating 3515 penalty minutes.
"Pretty good for a guy who wasn't supposed to make it, eh?" Domi says.
In the 1990-91 season, Domi played 28 games and scored his first goal on March 23 against the Flyers. In 1991-92, he joined the Rangers full time and played 42 games as the team won the President's Trophy championship. In the playoffs, he scored one goal in six games. Once again he was best remembered for his fists, rather than his playing ability.
In 1992-93, Domi was traded with Kris King to the Winnipeg Jets for Ed Olczyk. In 61 games between the two teams, he scored 15 points and tallied 344 penalty minutes. In 1993-94, he played 81 games, scored 19 points and racked up a league-high 347 penalty minutes.
In the shortened 1994-95 season, Domi was traded back to the team that originally drafted him back in 1988, the Toronto Maple Leafs. In 39 games between the two teams, Domi registered nine points. In 1995-96, he tallied 13 points and 297 penalty minutes; in 1996-97, he scored a career-high 17 assists and 28 points while spending another 275 penalty minutes in the penalty box. In 1997-98, Domi scored 14 points and recorded 365 penalty minutes.
In 1998-99, the Maple Leafs improved 28 points to make the playoffs for the first time in three years. In the playoffs, he helped the team reach the Eastern Conference finals. In 1999-00, he scored 14 points.
Entering his tenth season with the Leafs' in 2003-04, Domi has become a more complete player by shaving off his penalty minute totals and by contributing more offensively.
Centre Brian Bradley was an excellent puckhandler and skater who played 13 NHL seasons in the 1980s and 1990s. He was a clever passer whose creative talents were often on display with the man advantage.
The tricky pivot was a solid playmaker and power play specialist for parts of four seasons in Vancouver. In January 1991, the Canucks sent him to the Toronto Maple Leafs for mobile defenceman Tom Kurvers. His play was up and down on the mediocre Leafs and the club opted to leave him unprotected in the Expansion Draft. Bradley was chosen by the Tampa Bay Lightning and went on to play his best hockey.
In 1992-93, Bradley scored a personal high 42 goals and played in his first All-Star Game. He recorded two more 20-goal seasons and played in the 1994 All-Star Game until injuries began to interfere with his career. Bradley retired in 1998 after dressing for only 14 games.
Gary Nylund is the hockey legend who should have been.
In a pre-season game against the Quebec Nordiques, Nylund was hit innocently by Wilf Paiement, but his left knee buckled. It was dubbed a hyper-extension, and Nylund's rookie season would be delayed until after Christmas.
Nylund returned, and finally got his chance to play in the NHL. But his dream returned to nightmare after just 16 contests. A accidental bump with linesman John D'Amico not only re-aggravated the knee injury, but made it far worse. Nylund's ACL was torn, costing him the rest of his rookie season and half of the following season.
At this time Nylund was still a teenager, and as such was losing some of the most valuable development time a NHL hockey player has. Instead of fulfilling his destiny, he was busy rehabilitating his bad wheel. Nylund would return, but with his lost mobility he settled into a nice role as a defensive defender.
Why he should be selected
- 1998 Olympic Gold Medal
- 2x best defenceman at the World Championships (98 and 99)
- 3x Gold Medal winner at the World Championships
Legends of Hockey
antisek Kucera was a mobile defenceman who played 354 games for four teams between 1990-91 and 1996-97. In the NHL he was more of a solid role player than a dominant force.
Born in Prague, Kucera played with Sparta Praha and Dukla Jihlava between 1985 and 1990. He competed at the 1986 European Junior Championships and was selected to the tournament all-star team. Kucera was chosen 77th overall in 1986 by the Chicago Black Hawks. He also helped Czechoslovakia win the silver medal at the 1987 World Junior Championships and finished fourth with the team in 1988. He later played for his country at the 1989 World Championships and the 1991 Canada Cup.
The experienced defender played 40 games for Chicago in 1990-91 then became a regular until he was traded to the Hartford Whalers late in 1993-94. Kucera's skill and savvy was sough by the Czech Republic at the 1994 World Championships but the team disappointed with a sixth place finish.
Why he shouldn't be selected:
- Solid, but uneventful NHL career
Nagy - definitely one of the few per-game offensive players remaining.
Shill - I'm trying to feel it, I really am. Yeah, he was good enough to put together a short NHL career and contributed to a cup. But at age 28 and 29 in the AHL (which, like the NHL, was starting to get a bit war-weakend), he was just an average scorer, not a star. A guy like Carl Liscombe I give credit for being sent down and getting two MVP awards. Shill didn't do anything there though.
Barnaby - This guy was totally pegged for my second line. See, these are the kinds of guys you should be getting - fighters who can really play!
Momesso - This guy was mine today if you didn't take him. Unbelieveable. I am pretty disillusioned with the offensive LWs out there, so I was targeting a guy with scoring line glue guy potential. Only downside was that he didn't always play as big and mean as he looked.
Miller - I never saw him as a two-way forward personally. now that I research deeper, I see that I was incorrect. Which means we all missed out bigtime. He has very solid offensive potential to go with this. Looks like a shorter career Doug Smail with a better touch with the puck and not quite as great defensively. Worthy of a shot in a higher league.
Oddleifson - That's great that he was a captain, but god, the guy scored less than 100 goals in 500+ NHL games. if he was a winger, I'd take what else he brings, but there are just so many centers left who can actually put the puck in. As for being the Canucks' top scoring center, both Boudrias and Lever also played center, and I believe they would hold that title in Oddleifson's first and third seasons with the team.
Scuderi - good underrated guy.
Tessier - about as good as we're gonna get right now, from NHL coaches anyway.
Ehrhoff - not sold. He didn't deserve to be 9th in norris voting, I'll tell you that much.
Domi - If Hunter and Brashear are valid picks, then so is Domi. And I think I know when that pic was taken too.
Bradley - I kept away because he only scored while with the Lightning. But he did have a few big seasons. It's at the point where he definitely deserves recognition.
Kucera - Not sold, just based on the limited international achievements. We saw enough of him at the NHL level to say he was just average.
Nylund - Was tough and did have some big ice-time years in the mid-80s and 1991.