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What's so good about Trevor Linden?

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Old
02-22-2013, 06:41 PM
  #26
kaiser matias
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Also have to consider the context of the era. Linden was drafted in 1988. This came at a point when the Canucks were 12 years into a 15 year streak of losing seasons. Their lone division title at the time had been won back in 1975, and except for an unexpected run to the 1982 Finals, they had little playoff success. Star Canucks were names like Stan Smyl, Thomas Gradin, Don Lever, Toni Tanti, not exactly big names outside of BC.

Linden comes in and right from the start he makes an impact. Finishes second on the team in points his first year, and contributes 7 points in 7 playoff games against the Cup-winning Flames. The team's fortunes rise over the following years, mirroring Linden's growth as a player. He is named captain at 21, one of the youngest in NHL history at that point. Decent players like Kirk McLean, Pavel Bure, Greg Adams, and Geoff Courtnall are brought on board, and the team wins a couple division titles and reaches the 1994 Finals, where they nearly win the Cup. Leading this team was their captain, who put up a respectable 25 points in 24 games.

Just as important, Linden was very active off the ice, involved in charities and the like. Like mentioned earlier, he would go out of his way to help sick children, and made numerous unannounced visits to the BC Children's Hospital, often on his own time and without bringing attention to it. The fact that he genuinely seemed to care about the kids he visited had a lasting impact on Canucks fans.

It is because of this, that the Canucks fortunes rose alongside the development of Linden and his humanitarian work that he became one of the, if not the most, popular Canucks in team history.

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02-22-2013, 07:59 PM
  #27
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Linden was a good and very consistent No. 1 Center during his original run in Vancouver. Unlike some guys, he didn't suffer a dropoff come playoff time, and he sometimes was even better in the playoffs.

He wasn't a superstar center, but he was still very solid and dependable in his role.

During his time in Montreal, he was a good 2nd/3rd line center.


Linden would probably have to be considered one of the 10 best players ever to play for the Canucks, and of the players who played most of their career in Vancouver, he's probably in the Top 5.

So it makes sense that Canucks fans would think very highly of him.

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02-22-2013, 08:17 PM
  #28
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Well for one, he turned in to a hipster.

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02-22-2013, 08:17 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Combine and average out the skills and attributes of Adam Graves, Wendel Clark, and Ryan Smyth, make him a center with good faceoff ability, and give him the durability they often lacked. Then you'd have Trevor Linden, complete with the excessive love from the database of the city where he played his best games.

The best player of this bunch, but I do think he has that in common with all of them.
Pretty decent analysis, even though I'm not huge on player comps and realize this is not a comp.

Add in that he is 10 times a better person than hockey player then you can understand his icon status in Vancouver.

It would have been really interesting to see what would have happened had he stayed in Vancouver as the trade during the Moose/Keenan era seemed to derail his carer a bit.

His first 9 years from 89-97 ages 18-26 in Vancouver don't look all that impressive at first blush

36th in goals, 46th in points but add in the intangibles and the fact that he started at 18 it starts to look like a really good career in the making...then the trade and he was never really the same again (production wise)
.
http://www.hockey-reference.com/play...rder_by=points

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02-22-2013, 11:16 PM
  #30
Ogie Goldthorpe
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As a looong time Canucks fan, the first thing I liked about him was the fact that he was our first decent 1st round pick (that we kept) in franchise history. And he was good from the get go.

Plus, the first thing he did when he got to town was buy Garth Butcher's 1965 Mustang.

He was also the first sign that we were finally going to turn things around after posting losing records for 15 seasons (imagine Columbus, but worse).

AND he was Captain Try, with skill, and came across as the kind of young man that you would want your son to turn into, or your daughter to marry. Although the skill eventually left, the other characteristics remained for the rest of his career.

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02-23-2013, 01:02 AM
  #31
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People often reference the 1994 Finals, which is a shining moment in Linden's career, so I'll use another person from that series as a comparison.

Mark Messier.

Linden was not all that dissimilar from Messier. Both were physically dominant, both were excellent on faceoffs, both were great leaders.

Someone earlier compared Linden to a cross between Graves, Clark, and Smyth. I would say he's more like a cross between Messier, Neely, and late-career Yzerman. He was a dominant power forward like Messier and Neely, but he was much more of a defensive player.

Linden was a two-way player who played excellent defense, and was a solid offensive contributor as well despite never really having any offensive talent to play with (Bure was the only significant offensive player on the team during his prime, and they didn't play together). Given Linden's displayed offensive ability, I believe that had Bure not been on the team as the "offensive" guy, he would easily have carried that load and role. And his HHOF chances would be much better, although he still probably ends up on the outide looking in (to the chagrin of many Vancouver fans who feel it should be otherwise).

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Got to be a few years by now.
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He's terrible. I mean, when was the last time he put up decent numbers?
He posted 80 points in 82 games 1995-96.

He had 40 points in 49 games in 1996-97; his nearly 500-game ironman streak ended at the beginning of December with an injury.

After that he spent a couple injury-riddled seasons with NYI, Montreal, and Washington before returning to Vancouver when he was almost 32 and a significantly broken-down version of himself.

Linden was second in Calder voting to Brian Leetch and was picked ROTY by fans in the THN poll.

Linden's second season was ended with a shoulder injury, which likely affected his offensive output for the rest of his career.

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02-23-2013, 01:56 AM
  #32
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i think the key difference is that when linden was the best canuck, they could still make the second round of the playoffs. and he carried that team, with obviously excellent goaltending from mclean, for good parts of the '94 finals run. he wasn't a franchise player, but he was a guy you could build at least an average team around. graves, clark, and smyth i have nothing but the highest regard for, but they were excellent complementary players. without messier, gilmour, and weight respectively, you couldn't count on those guys to carry an offense. if you put any of those guys on a first line with cliff ronning and counted on that line to lead your team, that's a lottery team.

nor did clark or smyth have anything close to the defensive ability of linden, while graves was good but not at the same level. leadership is right there though.



this is basically it. he was a very good and well loved player, but he was and remains an exceptional person and citizen and that's why he's so universally adored... even for those among us, like myself, who often ('94 excepted of course) thought he could have done more on the ice.
Yeah, you're right about the defense.

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02-23-2013, 12:16 PM
  #33
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I remember him best for this goal, despite the heartache for all Canadian fans that followed (sorry for the recorded-on-a-toaster clip)

I thought this would go down as among the most clutch goals ever (albeit for only about 20 minutes).

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02-25-2013, 04:27 AM
  #34
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That hit on the Blues is classic. I never tire of watching that. I only wish there was a better clip.

"Linden has been chopped down, he's crawling towards the bench. Linden has been injured. Now he's hit again by Messier going to the bench. Messier hit Linden when he was down on his knees. It could get a bit ugly in the late stages. Linden has struggled to the bench. But there is going to be that seventh game, we'll hope they can patch Linden up and get him in that one. He will play, YOU KNOW HE'LL PLAY! He'll play on crutches! And he will play at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night. The game is over!"


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02-25-2013, 04:49 AM
  #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the edler View Post
I guess you can compare him somewhat to Dustin Brown, except Linden wasn't a dirty diver. Or a lesser version of Jonathan Toews.
Jarome Iginla comes immediately to mind. Linden was less cocky and more humble than Toews.

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02-25-2013, 05:00 AM
  #36
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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Combine and average out the skills and attributes of Adam Graves, Wendel Clark, and Ryan Smyth, make him a center with good faceoff ability, and give him the durability they often lacked. Then you'd have Trevor Linden, complete with the excessive love from the fanbase of the city where he played his best games.

The best player of this bunch, but I do think he has that in common with all of them.
I have a question for you. In what way was Linden a more durable player than Smyth? I would debate that point, considering Smyth, even with his style of play, put up 4 20+ goal seasons past the age of 30. While Linden was still a good player past 30, I think his injuries impacted his game more than Smyth. I think part of durability isn't just withstanding injuries, but maintaining a level of play with the aforementioned injuries and progression of age.

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02-25-2013, 05:47 AM
  #37
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Originally Posted by Mr. Fancy Pants View Post
That hit on the Blues is classic. I never tire of watching that. I only wish there was a better clip.

"Linden has been chopped down, he's crawling towards the bench. Linden has been injured. Now he's hit again by Messier going to the bench. Messier hit Linden when he was down on his knees. It could get a bit ugly in the late stages. Linden has struggled to the bench. But there is going to be that seventh game, we'll hope they can patch Linden up and get him in that one. He will play, YOU KNOW HE'LL PLAY! He'll play on crutches! And he will play at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night. The game is over!"

So ironic.

Really shows you the kind of player Linden was vs the kind of player Messier was.

Both warriors who were excellent in the playoffs, but for completely different reasons.

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I remember him best for this goal, despite the heartache for all Canadian fans that followed (sorry for the recorded-on-a-toaster clip)

I thought this would go down as among the most clutch goals ever (albeit for only about 20 minutes).
On a star-studded team like that, Trevor Linden would be the guy to tie up the game in the final minute. Just an absolute clutch player.

Funnily enough, he turned out to be quite the shootout specialist. Too bad he never got a chance to shoot in that game or things may have been different.

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Old
02-25-2013, 09:43 AM
  #38
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Another interesting tidbit (for the posters who enjoy those "trade-string" threads) is that Trevor Linden's legacy still impacts the team through the players he was traded for.

When Linden was traded to the Islanders, we got back Todd Bertuzzi, Bryan McCabe and a 3rd round pick, who turned out to be Jarkko Ruutu. All three became legitimate NHL'ers, to varying degrees of effectiveness. McCabe was traded, along with a 1st rounder (who turned out to be Mikhail Yakupov), for the pick that eventually yielded us Daniel Sedin. And as you know, Bertuzzi ended up fetching Vancouver Roberto Luongo.

So essentially Linden got back Vancouver Robert Luongo, Daniel Sedin, years of Todd Bertuzzi in his prime and a few years of Bryan McCabe & Jarkko Ruutu. A random fit for a king.

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02-25-2013, 09:53 AM
  #39
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Really shows you the kind of player Linden was vs the kind of player Messier was.

Both warriors who were excellent in the playoffs, but for completely different reasons.
Two great anecdotes, I have heard kind of illustrates the integrity of both players.

1.) As soon as Mark Messier arrives in Vancouver, he begins to complain and divides the lockerroom in half. He wanted to be captain and also wear #11, which was a number that Vancouver retired after the death of Wayne Maki. Messier got both wishes since Linden believed in the greater good of the team and relinquished the C without complaint.

2.) When Trevor Linden (who was the captain of the NY Islanders) was traded to Montreal, the team immediately embraced the proven leader. The team had a vote whether to make Linden the new captain of Montreal or retain Saku Koivu, who was the existing captain. It ended being a 50/50 tie, with Linden having the final vote. In the same gesture of leadership for the collective (as opposed to individual good), Linden cast his vote for Koivu.

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02-25-2013, 10:03 AM
  #40
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Originally Posted by Darth Joker View Post
Linden was a good and very consistent No. 1 Center during his original run in Vancouver. Unlike some guys, he didn't suffer a dropoff come playoff time, and he sometimes was even better in the playoffs.

He wasn't a superstar center, but he was still very solid and dependable in his role.

During his time in Montreal, he was a good 2nd/3rd line center.


Linden would probably have to be considered one of the 10 best players ever to play for the Canucks, and of the players who played most of their career in Vancouver, he's probably in the Top 5.

So it makes sense that Canucks fans would think very highly of him.

huh? He was a winger during most of his first stint in Vancouver.

A very good player, very good leader and a by all accounts a great person.

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02-25-2013, 10:07 AM
  #41
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Originally Posted by Mr. Fancy Pants View Post
That hit on the Blues is classic. I never tire of watching that. I only wish there was a better clip.

"Linden has been chopped down, he's crawling towards the bench. Linden has been injured. Now he's hit again by Messier going to the bench. Messier hit Linden when he was down on his knees. It could get a bit ugly in the late stages. Linden has struggled to the bench. But there is going to be that seventh game, we'll hope they can patch Linden up and get him in that one. He will play, YOU KNOW HE'LL PLAY! He'll play on crutches! And he will play at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night. The game is over!"

I'd forgotten about that nice blind elbow to the face. Who was the piece of trash that did that? I can't quite make it out.

I guess Messier really was the leader of that NYR team cause that was a Messier type move. Like hitting a guy when he's down. Classy.

Can you imagine the suspension on that one these days? wow.

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02-25-2013, 10:09 AM
  #42
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Originally Posted by Tsiruot View Post

2.) When Trevor Linden (who was the captain of the NY Islanders) was traded to Montreal, the team immediately embraced the proven leader. The team had a vote whether to make Linden the new captain of Montreal or retain Saku Koivu, who was the existing captain. It ended being a 50/50 tie, with Linden having the final vote. In the same gesture of leadership for the collective (as opposed to individual good), Linden cast his vote for Koivu.
wow i've never heard that story. thanks for sharing it.

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02-25-2013, 10:10 AM
  #43
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I respect all what Linden did in Vancouver, but honestly he completly flew away from my radar after he left Canucks. Offensively he fall maybe two tiers bellow his Canucks' level. Injuries caught him up? To me it was like: wow, that Linden is great captain in Vancouver, wait, is he still playing in the NHL?

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02-25-2013, 10:52 AM
  #44
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Originally Posted by Tsiruot View Post
1.) As soon as Mark Messier arrives in Vancouver, he begins to complain and divides the lockerroom in half. He wanted to be captain and also wear #11, which was a number that Vancouver retired after the death of Wayne Maki. Messier got both wishes since Linden believed in the greater good of the team and relinquished the C without complaint.
Messier publicly endorsed Linden as captain when he arrived in Vancouver. It was Linden who wasn't comfortable being captain, he gave the captaincy away because he was concerned that if things went wrong he was going to be second guessed.

Messier was told by Canucks managment that the Maki's had been contacted concerning the number, they had not. Later they said they were ok with Messier using the number until he was done in Vancouver as long as the team would then acknowledge it as officially retired, the Canucks refused.

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02-25-2013, 04:10 PM
  #45
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I missed Linden the first time around because I wasn't living in Vancouver. I never understood what the hype was about until years later when I met him in person. If you meet Linden you'll get it. He is the epitome of class and leadership. The guy cares and you will see it.

When Messier came in he divided the room. All the players that were here with Linden were loyal to him. They disliked Messier because of his attitude. That is why the Canucks franchise went downhill in the 90's. Ask Odjick what he thinks of Messier.... Messier came to Vancouver for money and all he did here was party. The stories that I have heard first hand from people that knew him on a daily basis are embarrassing. He was no leader. Frankly I think it's a disgrace that an NHL award is named for him.

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02-25-2013, 10:28 PM
  #46
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I have a question for you. In what way was Linden a more durable player than Smyth? I would debate that point, considering Smyth, even with his style of play, put up 4 20+ goal seasons past the age of 30. While Linden was still a good player past 30, I think his injuries impacted his game more than Smyth. I think part of durability isn't just withstanding injuries, but maintaining a level of play with the aforementioned injuries and progression of age.
we have different definitions of durability.

Linden played 1382 games, played until he was 38, was once the NHL's reigning ironman, and had 12 seasons where he missed 2 games or fewer (10 in which he missed none)

Smith is finished at 36, has played 1167 games, and has just 6 seasons with 2 or fewer missed games. The fact that he was a slightly more potent offensive threat has nothing to do with his durability.

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02-25-2013, 10:37 PM
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Because while he may not be the hockey player others should try to be, he is the human being other hockey players should aspire to be.

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02-25-2013, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Tsiruot View Post
2.) When Trevor Linden (who was the captain of the NY Islanders) was traded to Montreal, the team immediately embraced the proven leader. The team had a vote whether to make Linden the new captain of Montreal or retain Saku Koivu, who was the existing captain. It ended being a 50/50 tie, with Linden having the final vote. In the same gesture of leadership for the collective (as opposed to individual good), Linden cast his vote for Koivu.
I've been a Linden fan since I was seven and I've never heard about this before. Awesome guy.

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02-25-2013, 11:24 PM
  #49
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When Messier came in he divided the room. All the players that were here with Linden were loyal to him. They disliked Messier because of his attitude. That is why the Canucks franchise went downhill in the 90's.
Um... the Canucks were having progressively worse regular season records in every season since 1992-93. They were going downhill well before their two-season rebuild.

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02-25-2013, 11:35 PM
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Two great anecdotes, I have heard kind of illustrates the integrity of both players.

1.) As soon as Mark Messier arrives in Vancouver, he begins to complain and divides the lockerroom in half. He wanted to be captain and also wear #11, which was a number that Vancouver retired after the death of Wayne Maki. Messier got both wishes since Linden believed in the greater good of the team and relinquished the C without complaint.

2.) When Trevor Linden (who was the captain of the NY Islanders) was traded to Montreal, the team immediately embraced the proven leader. The team had a vote whether to make Linden the new captain of Montreal or retain Saku Koivu, who was the existing captain. It ended being a 50/50 tie, with Linden having the final vote. In the same gesture of leadership for the collective (as opposed to individual good), Linden cast his vote for Koivu.
Both of those stories are entirely made up. Linden epitomized everything that was wrong with the late 90s habs. He brought with him a country club atmosphere and contributed nothing of note to the team. If anything his distinct lack of leadership was quite evident when the team was in the middle of an intense playoff race and he was nowhere to be seen.

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