Tuesday, December 08, 2009

HHOF Discussion 1,245: Mats Sundin and Pierre Turgeon in the Same Breath??

In the industry I work in, there's a phrase that holds tried-and-true: "This one will get some letters." It's my believe that this could be one of those times.

The reason I write about this is when I saw it in The Hockey News in their "Snapshots" section. For those not familiar, the section is a small blurb with some informative news from around hockey with possible some kind of zinger or smart-ass comment to it at the end. In this one blurb, they mention something along the lines of if Mats Sundin gets into the Hockey Hall of Fame, so should Pierre Turgeon. They cite Turgeon putting just as many points as Sundin in a shorter amount of time.

At first, I kind of laughed it off; but the more I thought about it-- the more I think it should be something seriously considered. Neither of them have a Cup, both were pretty consistent season-by-season, but of course the edge of the thing would go to Sundin for playing as well as he did in the market he did. Turgeon played consistent until his last few seasons, but aside from those-- he'd often be at the top of the team leaders in points, often being at the top of that list.

Yet, at the same time-- you look at where Turgeon played and where Sundin spent most his career. How much does the media exposure help out the player in situations like these?? You look at what was going on with Sundin and how well he played on a decent to subpar team, but would he get the same high-praise if he played in the markets that Turgeon did?? Granted, Turgeon did play in Montreal for a season and led the team for his full season, but it wasn't enough to get a gauge on whether he would get the treatment Sundin got in Toronto by the media, as well as the fans.

Sure, the International play is no-contest in favor of Sundin, who was amazing for Sweden, so the edge is obviously there. But look at points per game (Turgeon 1.03, Sundin 1.00) and goals per game (Turgeon 0.40, Sundin 0.42), the two are exactly the same in stats ratio. If you're going on stats alone, then you can actually mention both in the same breath and not be looked at as totally insane when it all boils down to it.

While Sundin should be assured to be in the Hockey Hall of Fame; you have to maybe put Turgeon into consideration. Not first-ballot, maybe-- but sometime before he loses his chance at it. There's a lot less deserving guys in the Hall (depending on who ask, of course), so why not throw a guy like Turgeon in there who did so much for teams that seemingly had little to help him out at the time. Of course, we all will remember the hit Turgeon took from Dale Hunter; so why not give us another reason to roll that footage once more??


PPP said...

Sure, you can discuss it but the conclusion would have to be that Sundin is a no-brainer while Turgeon will have to wait if only because everything outside of a few stats skews so heavily towards Mats Sundin.

ajschild said...

Turgeon was a solid player, but never a great player. Part of this is qualitative. Sundin could put a team on his back. Turgeon threw a hissy fit when Saku Koivu got his ice time and demanded a trade. That about sums up the difference between the two...

Ken said...

Pierre sat on the bench during the brawl at the WJs in 87'. The only guy (other than the other goalie but he thought he had to play) that didn't help his teammates.

Anonymous said...

if Mats Sundin gets into the hall then Olli Jokinen should get in to as they are both identical players but one was fortunate to play for a high profile team