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What did people think of Selanne when he first broke into the league?

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10-09-2013, 06:26 PM
  #1
Sticks and Pucks
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What did people think of Selanne when he first broke into the league?

In light of Tomas Hertl's hot start as a rookie, I started thinking of Teemu Selanne's rookie season. What were people thinking when Selanne first burst onto the scene in 1992-1993 and set all those rookie scoring records? Was he well-known before he arrived or was he a surprise rookie whom people thought would cool down? I imagine most of the rookie hype would have gone towards Lindros entering the season, not Selanne. Ultimately, his first season was his best statistical season ever but did people feel that way or did people think he could perhaps break Gretzky's 92 goals record someday?

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10-09-2013, 07:41 PM
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vadim sharifijanov
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he came with a little less hype than bure the year before, but yes he was well known and had been highly anticipated for a few years. probably would have gotten the same hype as bure, but there were extenuating factors: bure had the cold war, drama with russia over his transfer, and an "is he really going to be able to play?" news cycle that bled into the first month of the season. also, selanne's arrival was a bit buried because of lindros' debut.

what did i think? hell of a player. nobody thought he'd break 75 goals even by the all-star break; he went nuts in the second half. but there whispers he might flirt with 50 and challenge bossy's record. personally, i thought he'd slow down from his pace, not improve, because of the usual european rookie slump after 40 or 50 games. usually those guys aren't yet conditioned for an 80 game season. also thought he was the biggest cherry picker in the league, but i guess with peak housley feeding you the puck, there are certainly worse strategies than goal sucking.

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10-09-2013, 07:47 PM
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VanIslander
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I lived in Winnipeg after uni and recall him as: an offensive hot dogger who loved the open ice and didn't like to backcheck.

He went on to have real magic surging up ice with Kariya in Anaheim with Rucchin dropping back a la Soviets and 50's Habs style backchecking center pulling up high up the middle.

He showed his unwillingness to change his style of game when he came to San Jose and was a dud.

He benefitted tremendously in the new NHL (post 2004 lockout) and is suited to the less physical, greater open ice game of international competition and the NHL powerplay.

I like Teemu, but his strengths are overplayed by those who ignore his weaknesses.

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10-09-2013, 11:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vadim sharifijanov View Post
he came with a little less hype than bure the year before, but yes he was well known and had been highly anticipated for a few years. probably would have gotten the same hype as bure, but there were extenuating factors: bure had the cold war, drama with russia over his transfer, and an "is he really going to be able to play?" news cycle that bled into the first month of the season. also, selanne's arrival was a bit buried because of lindros' debut.

what did i think? hell of a player. nobody thought he'd break 75 goals even by the all-star break; he went nuts in the second half. but there whispers he might flirt with 50 and challenge bossy's record. personally, i thought he'd slow down from his pace, not improve, because of the usual european rookie slump after 40 or 50 games. usually those guys aren't yet conditioned for an 80 game season. also thought he was the biggest cherry picker in the league, but i guess with peak housley feeding you the puck, there are certainly worse strategies than goal sucking.
Good point on the shorter European schedule. After you saw that he didn't slow down, did you think he could perhaps one day break the single season goal scoring record? Was that an idea that people flirted with at all?

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10-10-2013, 02:45 AM
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Originally Posted by FirstOverallLine View Post
Good point on the shorter European schedule. After you saw that he didn't slow down, did you think he could perhaps one day break the single season goal scoring record? Was that an idea that people flirted with at all?
I find it somewhat hard to imagine that people could have anticipated the severe drop-off in league average scoring per game during the upcoming seasons, so i find it hard to believe that many did not believe that he perhaps could. As a matter of fact many still to this day does not realise/care about how outlandish that season was in terms of scoring, or during the eighties for that matter. Maybe it was then that Mogilnys to this day unreasonably high status was born as well, most probably. Or perhaps the beliefs that he never neared those heights again becouse of injuries and/or lazyness.


Last edited by Darth Yoda: 10-10-2013 at 09:24 AM. Reason: brain fart
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10-10-2013, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by FirstOverallLine View Post
In light of Tomas Hertl's hot start as a rookie, I started thinking of Teemu Selanne's rookie season. What were people thinking when Selanne first burst onto the scene in 1992-1993 and set all those rookie scoring records? Was he well-known before he arrived or was he a surprise rookie whom people thought would cool down? I imagine most of the rookie hype would have gone towards Lindros entering the season, not Selanne. Ultimately, his first season was his best statistical season ever but did people feel that way or did people think he could perhaps break Gretzky's 92 goals record someday?
Selanne was probably most hyped after his first game the next season. He had a hat trick in his first game and at the time he had 54 goals in his last 51 regular season games. So some people did think he had a chance at the time to brake Gretzky's 92 goal record. But he cooled off fast after that...

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10-10-2013, 09:23 AM
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I can remember a lot of people thinking he was going to be a great goal scorer which he was though he never had another season like 1992-1993 again.

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10-10-2013, 09:26 AM
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the edler
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I was 12 at the time so don't remember anything about any hype but if you look at his stats with Jokerit in his two last seasons there he scored a crazy amount of goals. I bet some people got a bit scared when he scored a hattrick in his first game of the 1993–94 season. He cooled down from that though and only scored 22 in the next 50.

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Ultimately, his first season was his best statistical season ever
Yes, but that's only the raw numbers. Look beyond the raw numbers. He finished tied for 5th in points that year with Turgeon and was behind 7th placed Mogilny in PPG. He had two seasons in Anaheim in the late 90s where he was 2nd in points.

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an offensive hot dogger who loved the open ice and didn't like to backcheck
I thought about that when I saw Hertl score those goals against the Rangers. Not only did he cherry pick a bit on some of the goals but all of them were scored when the Sharks were already up in goals, in blow out fashion. Reminded me a bit of Selänne.

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Maybe it was then that Mogilnys to this day unreasonably high status was born as well, most probably. Or perhaps the beliefs that he never neared those heights again becouse of injuries and/or lazyness.
I don't think Mogilny have that high of a status. Where do you see that status? I don't see a lot people talk about him as an all time great player or as a guy for the HOF? Or talk about him at all. He had great, great talent though and he showed it sporadically. He had a great season in 95–96 when he scored 55 goals, more than Selänne ever cared to reproduce. Then when he was past his prime in the DPE he still had PPG+ seasons in Toronto where he was the only guy who ever outscored Sundin. Put up 1032 points in 990 NHL games. That's pretty good numbers. He could have had a lot better numbers too if he didn't waste a lot of games in the start of his NHL career on aerophobia.


Last edited by the edler: 10-10-2013 at 09:35 AM. Reason: 95–96
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10-10-2013, 11:36 AM
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Yes, but that's only the raw numbers. Look beyond the raw numbers. He finished tied for 5th in points that year with Turgeon and was behind 7th placed Mogilny in PPG. He had two seasons in Anaheim in the late 90s where he was 2nd in points.
I believe he was ahead of Moginly PPG but behind in GPG. If I am not mistaken.

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10-10-2013, 12:13 PM
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He had a great season in 95–96 when he scored 55 goals, more than Selänne ever cared to reproduce.


How do you go from telling people to "look beyond the raw numbers" to taking an unnecessary shot at Selanne for only scoring 52 Goals in 73 games in 1997-98 as if it is worse than Mogilny scoring 55 goals in 79 games in 1995-96?

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10-10-2013, 12:16 PM
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Prior to his arrival, he was considered a "talented Euro" along the lines of Palffy, Fedorov and Mogilny but nowhere near the level of Bure or Jagr. I remember his rookie year well.... he got off to an insane start and people rode the wave but expected the storybook season to come to a halt. Let's not forget that Eric Lindros dominated the news and press with his trade to Philadelphia and his leap into the NHL that year.

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10-10-2013, 12:22 PM
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Bottom line, Selanne was a flashy (sorry, pun) afterthought to an NHL that also had Lindros in it. Constantly in conversations with wingers like Bure and Mogilny at a time when centres like Sakic, Forsberg, Lindros, Lemieux, Fedorov, Yzerman, etc, were still simply seen as "better".

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10-10-2013, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by the edler View Post
I was 12 at the time so don't remember anything about any hype but if you look at his stats with Jokerit in his two last seasons there he scored a crazy amount of goals. I bet some people got a bit scared when he scored a hattrick in his first game of the 1993–94 season. He cooled down from that though and only scored 22 in the next 50.
Jets couldn't recover from Phil Housley going to St. Louis. No other dman of his offensive abilities to support Teemu.

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10-10-2013, 01:09 PM
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the edler
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Originally Posted by TAnnala View Post
I believe he was ahead of Moginly PPG but behind in GPG. If I am not mistaken.
Mogilny even had a better PPG than 4th placed Yzerman. For what it's worth.

1| Lemieux 2.67
2| LaFontaine 1.76
3| Oates 1.69
4| Mogilny 1.65
5| Yzerman 1.63
6| Turgeon 1.59
7| Selänne 1.57


Last edited by the edler: 10-10-2013 at 01:16 PM.
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10-10-2013, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Ohashi_Jouzu View Post
Bottom line, Selanne was a flashy (sorry, pun) afterthought to an NHL that also had Lindros in it. Constantly in conversations with wingers like Bure and Mogilny at a time when centres like Sakic, Forsberg, Lindros, Lemieux, Fedorov, Yzerman, etc, were still simply seen as "better".
You forgot Paul Kariya.

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10-10-2013, 01:35 PM
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Some of the negative comments about Selanne in this thread are pretty hilarious coming from Bure fans.

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10-10-2013, 01:46 PM
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vadim sharifijanov
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Some of the negative comments about Selanne in this thread are pretty hilarious coming from Bure fans.
if you're talking about me, pavel's and teemu's careers went in opposite directions. pavel became more of a cherry picker as he got older, teemu became less. but if you saw them play all those divisional games and the first round of the '93 playoffs, you'd see that one guy was a decently well-rounded player for a scoring winger, and the other guy was, well, '98 bure.

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10-10-2013, 01:52 PM
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Good point on the shorter European schedule. After you saw that he didn't slow down, did you think he could perhaps one day break the single season goal scoring record? Was that an idea that people flirted with at all?
i don't think anyone saw the DPE coming, but it would have been pretty naive not to have seen that '93 was an anomaly year too. two rookies breaking 100 points, 21 100 point scorers, 14 50 goal scorers, 5 60 goal scorers, etc.

add to that the fact that the kind of player selanne was at the time, a guy who feasted on his speed and quick release to create scoring chances, and that he was turning 23 in the off-season, i don't think anyone saw him besting his '93 and hitting 93 goals. a lot of people at the time were thinking this is a guy who came over already in his prime, as opposed to having to have the development curve of, say, mogilny or jagr. but obviously we were wrong about that, and about his ability to keep scoring once his "jets" started cooling.

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10-10-2013, 01:59 PM
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Some of the negative comments about Selanne in this thread are pretty hilarious coming from Bure fans.
Only takes a few seconds to look to the username and see why they are ragging on Teemu

If anyone is putting Teemu down for his defensive play, your expectations were/are too high. He's never been a two way player. He's always been pure offense, with subtle defense. Not to say he's bad on D, but he's certainly not a "great 2 way player". The lockout was a Godsend for Teemu, as that knee surgery saved and prolonged his career.

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10-10-2013, 02:44 PM
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Some of the negative comments about Selanne in this thread are pretty hilarious coming from Bure fans.
Well, one of them could at least play on the PK. Bure = 49 SH points in 702 games. Selänne = 9 SH points so far in 1389 games.

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if you're talking about me, pavel's and teemu's careers went in opposite directions. pavel became more of a cherry picker as he got older, teemu became less. but if you saw them play all those divisional games and the first round of the '93 playoffs, you'd see that one guy was a decently well-rounded player for a scoring winger, and the other guy was, well, '98 bure.
This is correct. Bure was decent defensively early on and then went south post the blown out knees in 95–96. Selänne was weaker early on and then became better, although I must be honest here and say he never became very good in his own zone.

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10-10-2013, 03:38 PM
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I remember looking at a lot of the material from the 1988 draft and basically it described Selanne as the best prospect of the draft except for him being a European and the resulting questions about when he would come over.

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10-10-2013, 03:50 PM
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I remember looking at a lot of the material from the 1988 draft and basically it described Selanne as the best prospect of the draft except for him being a European and the resulting questions about when he would come over.
Really? I've always thought it was Modano and Linden, and then everyone else. Was the 1988 draft sort of like this past draft where the focus was mostly on MacKinnon and Drouin, but Barkov was also highly regarded as well? Note I am not trying to compare the skills of the guys from 1988 to the guys from 2013. I am just trying to compare the hype.

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10-10-2013, 03:52 PM
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i don't think anyone saw the DPE coming, but it would have been pretty naive not to have seen that '93 was an anomaly year too. two rookies breaking 100 points, 21 100 point scorers, 14 50 goal scorers, 5 60 goal scorers, etc.

add to that the fact that the kind of player selanne was at the time, a guy who feasted on his speed and quick release to create scoring chances, and that he was turning 23 in the off-season, i don't think anyone saw him besting his '93 and hitting 93 goals. a lot of people at the time were thinking this is a guy who came over already in his prime, as opposed to having to have the development curve of, say, mogilny or jagr. but obviously we were wrong about that, and about his ability to keep scoring once his "jets" started cooling.
Good point on Selanne's age back then. I guess we should remind ourselves that back in the 1980s many people hit their peak at around 23-24 so I guess it wouldn't have been unreasonable to think Selanne was peaking.

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10-10-2013, 03:53 PM
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Really? I've always thought it was Modano and Linden, and then everyone else.
That's exactly what I recall.

(I listened to that entire draft on NL 610 Radio in Kamloops, telling my girlfriend I was sick. )

Selanne was "flashy" his rookie year and Grapes hated him, criticizing him for showboating, so the Hertl reference is a bit apt.

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10-10-2013, 04:24 PM
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vadim sharifijanov
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Good point on Selanne's age back then. I guess we should remind ourselves that back in the 1980s many people hit their peak at around 23-24 so I guess it wouldn't have been unreasonable to think Selanne was peaking.
yeah, look at, say, denis savard or hawerchuk's drop offs. or kurri. were any of those guys still truly elite after 28?

funny thing is at the time you'd look at speedy wingers, esp euro ones, and assume it was all natural ability, and they'd slow down by 28. whereas you'd assume a heart and soul, rugged north american center like roenick would find a way to improve with the years, a la messier. funny how that one turned out.

but i think what we learned in the late 90s, and continued to learn post-lockout, is that selanne had a lot more jagr in him than he had bondra.

as for draft hype, i don't have a clear memory of '88, but after the canada cup teemu was definitely in the conversation with bure, kamensky, and kozlov as the second best player not in the NHL.

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