Go Back   HFBoards > General Hockey Discussion > The History of Hockey
Mobile Hockey's Future Become a Sponsor Site Rules Support Forum vBookie Page 2

The History of Hockey Relive great moments in hockey history and discuss how the game has changed over time.

Leading the league in assists 4 times

Thread Tools
03-25-2013, 02:03 PM
vadim sharifijanov
vadim sharifijanov's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 12,237
vCash: 500
Leading the league in assists 4 times

when joe thornton's (or adam oates's) HHOF candidacy gets brought up, one of the first things people say is "guy led the league in assists 3 times. case closed." in thornton's case, it was three straight.

list of guys who led the league in assists three or more times, with the number in parentheses if higher than three: sedin, thornton, oates, jagr, gretzky (16), lemieux, orr (5), esposito, mikita, howe, lach, cowley, joe primeau, frank boucher. discounting the guys who played during or before WW2 (including lach, who to be fair had his best years after it), and also ignoring the most recent three (sedin, thornton, oates), that's a ridiculous group. the highest of company an offensive player can keep.

this is where you have to humour me, because i'm going to use henrik sedin as an example and some of you guys are going to roll your eyes. i'd been thinking about this since the end of last season but didn't want to jinx it. but barring an injury to crosby and a ridiculous hot streak, henrik clearly isn't going to lead the league in assists for a fourth straight time so now i can talk about it.

but what i want to ask is, what if he did lead the league this year? which is to say, what if a hypothetical player who wasn't a multiple hart/ross winner led the league in assists four times (amassing a total behind only orr and wayne) while contributing very little in terms of goal scoring (so, you could also extend this to thornton and oates). that elusive fourth assist title: how would it have changed the all-time ranking of sedin or thornton or oates?

- what if: forsberg had gotten hurt in '03 and big joe leads the league?

- or gretzky gets hurt in '91 and oates racks up another number one?

- or, in the completely hypothetical case, but i think this is the most interesting question: what if henrik had been awesome this year and crosby had been less awesome and he led the league in assists for a fourth straight time? that would be completely unprecedented outside of what the two greatest players of all time had done.

would you have to then include this player, who is a superstar but a pretty low rung superstar in the grand scheme of things, in any discussion of the top 10 playmakers of all time?

vadim sharifijanov is offline   Reply With Quote
03-25-2013, 03:40 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Oulu
Posts: 18,625
vCash: 50
First thing that came to my mind is, that id H. Sedin leads the league in assists for 4 straight years, it tells a lot of his great playmaking but maybe it tells even more about the competition level the league currently has. I am not sure if I am selling Henrik short here but i never felt that he is all-time great playmaker. Obviously he is one of the best in his time, but i think Thornton as a better all-time playmaker.

I am not sure if Oates leading the league in assists one more times changes my percpection about him a lot if at all.

TAnnala is offline   Reply With Quote
03-25-2013, 10:55 PM
Darth Yoda
Registered User
Darth Yoda's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Grovebranch's Crease
Country: Sweden
Posts: 3,217
vCash: 931
Would'nt count titles really. One can tie the lead at 65 or finish second with 80.

Darth Yoda is online now   Reply With Quote
03-26-2013, 12:34 AM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Vancouver
Country: Canada
Posts: 15,612
vCash: 500
I tend to look more at top 3, 5,10 finishes and the composition and era too.

I mean it's theoretically possible that the 2nd best player maker could have played during the 80's and had zero assist titles with Wayne there.

That's just me though, I'm under the impression and have viewed that leading the league or winning a trophy or cup can really go a long way in a guy being seen better than he was all time.

Bobby Clarke's 3 Harts come to mind as it was in the Orr era.

Hardyvan123 is offline   Reply With Quote
03-26-2013, 03:59 PM
Big Phil
Registered User
Big Phil's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2003
Country: Canada
Posts: 21,767
vCash: 500
Lots of things here. First off, Henrik is a late bloomer. He didn't have a PPG season until his 8th year in 2008-'09 and has only had 20+ goals in a season twice. 776 points in 924 games puts him at 0.84 PPG in his career and if he is on a decline which it seems he might be, I can't see that number getting higher. That PPG stat is similar to several players no one would imagine putting in the HHOF. Now, granted they didn't peak like Henrik with a Hart, Art Ross, two 1st team all-stars and three years leading the NHL in assists, but he was at the top for such a short time and I am not sure he is even there anymore.

If there ever was a player who needed to win a Cup it was him. 2011 looks worse and worse for the Canucks. Henrik was -11 that entire postseason and was invisible in the finals against Boston while players like Marchand and Recchi on the other side made an impact against Vancouver. That hurts him and if there is a player who can become the exception to the rule when it comes to HHOF enshrinement it could be him. If he retired tomorrow is he in the HHOF? I don't think so. So what can he do from here on in?

Big Phil is offline   Reply With Quote

Forum Jump


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:03 PM.

monitoring_string = "e4251c93e2ba248d29da988d93bf5144"
Contact Us - HFBoards - Archive - Privacy Statement - Terms of Use - Advertise - Top - AdChoices

vBulletin Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
HFBoards.com is a property of CraveOnline Media, LLC, an Evolve Media, LLC company. 2015 All Rights Reserved.