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Could Selanne have broken Bossy's rookie record a year earlier?

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04-17-2013, 08:46 AM
  #1
Mulletman
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Could Selanne have broken Bossy's rookie record a year earlier?

Selanne came into the NHL in 1992-93 and led the league in goals in his first year. That is something that has never happened before. How good of a chance would Selanne have had at breaking Bossy's rookie record of 53 goals, if he came to the NHL a year earlier?

I think he might have had a good chance, but it would have been really close.

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04-17-2013, 08:55 AM
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Epsilon
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On one hand, 1992-93 was abnormally high-scoring, and Selanne would have been a year younger. On the other hand, he would have only had to score 72% of the number of goals he actually did to break the record.

Pretty much pure speculation but I don't see why it couldn't have happened.

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04-17-2013, 09:24 AM
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Probably. He had a very good goal scoring year that year in Finland, and Phil Housley had a very good year for assists that year in Winnipeg, even without him. He would have been 21 starting the season instead of 22 when he got 76 but if both he and Housley were healthy i would say he would very likely have broken 53.

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04-17-2013, 09:50 AM
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Probably. He had a very good goal scoring year that year in Finland, and Phil Housley had a very good year for assists that year in Winnipeg, even without him. He would have been 21 starting the season instead of 22 when he got 76 but if both he and Housley were healthy i would say he would very likely have broken 53.
Thomas Steen missed half the year injured though. So while he would have still had Housley, he wouldn't have had that two-way center (plus Darrin Shannon on the left side) that made his cherry picking viable.

It's possible Troy Murray or Ed Olczyk could have worked out at center for him (or Olczyk could have played the LW with Murray at center; somewhat similar to a Kariya/Rucchin/Selanne situation) but the Jets simply didn't have the ability.

You have to remember, in 1992-93 they not only got Selanne, they also got Zhamnov and Tkachuk. They finally had a viable second scoring line. Selanne doesn't get 54 if the other team can crush his line the way they could have in 1991-92. Take away Zhamnov and Tkachuk from 1992-93, and I wouldn't be shocked if heavier defensive pressure on the top line prevents Selanne from leading the league.

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04-17-2013, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by eva unit zero View Post
Thomas Steen missed half the year injured though. So while he would have still had Housley, he wouldn't have had that two-way center (plus Darrin Shannon on the left side) that made his cherry picking viable.

It's possible Troy Murray or Ed Olczyk could have worked out at center for him (or Olczyk could have played the LW with Murray at center; somewhat similar to a Kariya/Rucchin/Selanne situation) but the Jets simply didn't have the ability.

You have to remember, in 1992-93 they not only got Selanne, they also got Zhamnov and Tkachuk. They finally had a viable second scoring line. Selanne doesn't get 54 if the other team can crush his line the way they could have in 1991-92. Take away Zhamnov and Tkachuk from 1992-93, and I wouldn't be shocked if heavier defensive pressure on the top line prevents Selanne from leading the league.
Good points. Hull had 70 goals that year so I agree leading the league would be unlikely. Housley still had 63 assists that year, where the next year with Selanne 16 more so statistically speaking he seemed to be the most significant. Still a good chance to get 54 or more, to break the rookie record, though perhaps for the reasons you state maybe less likely than I implied.

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04-17-2013, 12:22 PM
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Impossible to say, but Selanne's rookie year was a "perfect storm" kind of situation. Awesome year for rookie, yes but I am not even sure if that was the best year for rookie ever. It is one of the best, but not necessary "The best" all things considered.
But it was definitely the best goal year by a rookie ever.

I'd say the chances are 50%. (Number that i pulled out from my ass and can absolutely not back it up with any rational discussion)

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04-17-2013, 04:27 PM
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Big Phil
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Not sure if this has any bearing but Hull had 70 in 1991-'92. The next best was Kevin Stevens with 54. So only two players that year surpassed Bossy's rookie total. Selanne is a year younger and keep in mind there was 4 less games played. 1992 was the last 80 game season. The following two years had 84 before going back to the 82 we know today. That could be the difference between 2-3 goals.

What helps Selanne is the fact that he didn't beat up on weak teams particularly in 1993 looking at his stats. So you don't see a 5 goal game against Ottawa or San Jose thrown in there. Which means his goal scoring was spread out. So in 1991-'92, in a season where only the Sharks were a team that you could deem shockingly bad, you get the feeling he would still score.

I guess the knock on him again though is that Bure scored only 34 goals that year. Not sure if it matters much though.

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04-17-2013, 04:59 PM
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I guess the knock on him again though is that Bure scored only 34 goals that year. Not sure if it matters much though.
But Bure had 22 goals in his last 23 games, so it's feasible for a full-season rookie in 1991-92. Hell, Bure might have had the record if he had been an older rookie at the time - or had things clicked more at the beginning.

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04-17-2013, 09:58 PM
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Hardyvan123
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Originally Posted by Epsilon View Post
On one hand, 1992-93 was abnormally high-scoring, and Selanne would have been a year younger. On the other hand, he would have only had to score 72% of the number of goals he actually did to break the record.

Pretty much pure speculation but I don't see why it couldn't have happened.
Pretty much agree with this.

In his last 2 years in Finland Selanne had at age 20 in 91 33 G in 42 GP and at age 21 39G in 44GP.

I think Bure with a training camp might have broken Bossy's record as well but like you stated it's pure speculation.

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04-18-2013, 08:22 AM
  #10
Mulletman
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Even if Selanne wouldn't have broken Bossy's rookie record he might still have broken Bossy's record for most goals after 2 NHL seasons. Selanne would have had to score 47 in 1991-92 to brake that record. With 47 he would have been 5th in goals that year. Considering Selanne led the league in goals a year later, it's not that far off to think he might have been 5th the year before.

Selanne would still have had the speed and Phil Housley the year before, even if the team as a whole wouldn't have been the same.

It's a real shame we didn't get to see Selanne enter the league earlier...

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