Peaking Early - The Chance May Never Come Again

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by TheMoreYouKnow, Mar 4, 2011.

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  1. TheMoreYouKnow

    TheMoreYouKnow Registered User

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    Can you think of guys with great NHL careers who made the Finals as rookies and never got that far again?

    Danny Gare is about the only guy I can think of. Made the Finals with the Sabres in 75 as a rookie, got to the conference finals again in 80 and that was it.
     
  2. mco543

    mco543 Registered User

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    He doesn't fit the "as a rookie and never again" criteria but...

    Jaromir Jagr won it his 1st 2 years and has said that at the time he didn't understand what the Stanley Cup meant and how important it was and by time he understood it was too late and he spent the rest of his career trying to get back there but it was never to be.
     
  3. Passchendaele

    Passchendaele Registered User

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    Phil Russell fits the profile.

    A dman with over 1000 games and 400 points.

    Stanley Cup finals with the Hawks in '73 then... nothing.
     
  4. TheMoreYouKnow

    TheMoreYouKnow Registered User

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    Yeah if you include guys who won it and never again you probably get a longer list.

    Brian Rolston is in a weird category, won it in 95 with the Devils but wasn't a major contributor and then got traded in 99 from the Devils to the Avs only for the Devils to go on and win the Cup again, and of course Rolston ends up with the Bruins in the Bourque trade so isn't in Colorado for the Avs' Cup a year later either. 10 years on and he's fighting for a playoff spot with the Devils, another Cup not getting any more likely.
     
  5. Lead Role in a Cage

    Lead Role in a Cage Registered User

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    Pat Lafontaine.
     
  6. Stephen

    Stephen Registered User

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    Vaclav Prospal was on the 97 Flyers team for part of the year and had some games in the playoffs, and was on Tampa Bay from 2001 till the end of the 2003 season, and then rejoined them for 2005, after they won a cup...
     
  7. Hardyvan123

    Hardyvan123 [email protected]

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    Bobby Hull is the classic case.

    He has stated that at 22 he expected to win it again and never did.

    It was really cool that Wirtz Jr classed up and Hull was back in the Black Hawk fold when the Hawks won it last year.
     
  8. reckoning

    reckoning Registered User

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    None of these players would be considered "stars", but all had fairly good careers:

    Don Beaupre
    Ed Jovanovski
    Don Maloney
    Janne Niniimaa
     
  9. TheMoreYouKnow

    TheMoreYouKnow Registered User

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    Craig Janney went to the Finals twice in his first three years but never ended up with another shot.
     
  10. Big Phil

    Big Phil Registered User

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    Bill Wirtz himself was too much of a grouch to ever let that happen.

    I'll throw another name out there. Patrick Flatley. No, he didn't have a "great" career by any means unlike his co-rookie in 1984 Lafontaine, but he never got to the final after 1984.

    How about Ron Hextall? Had a season for the ages in 1987 one game away from the Cup. Yes I know he did play in the 1997 final but it was a shared duty with Snow, in fact Hextall only played in 8 games that spring. He's close enough to a HHOF career.

    This may sound weird, but Paul Henderson made the final twice in his first three years. Never again. Plus he never did anything else worth talking about afterwards ;)

    In his sophomore year Roger Crozier took the Red Wings to the final in 1966. I know he played sparingly with the Sabres in 1975 but wasn't their main goalie.

    Pete Peeters was a rookie with Philly in 1980. Never made the final again. Is a shade below the HHOF, so I guess he isn't "great" either
     
  11. TheMoreYouKnow

    TheMoreYouKnow Registered User

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    I'm not as discerning as you I suppose, I mostly put great there to make sure nobody comes up with a guy who played 200 games or nobody's ever heard of.
     
  12. Big Phil

    Big Phil Registered User

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    Well, it remains to be seen guys, but perhaps Eric Staal fits the bill. He was a sophomore in 2005-'06. Made the final and nothing since then. Cam Ward was a rookie as well. Staal will make an interesting HHOF case in the coming years and Ward might be in the mix when all is said and done.

    Something tells me Antti Niemi will never reach the final again

    Jason Spezza another good candidate? 3rd year and makes the final. His team and his career has gone downhill since then.

    Can't believe I didn't think of him: Ed Jovanovski. Made the final as a rookie in 1996. Never again.

    Theo Fleury won the Cup in 1989. Never made it out of the first round until 1999. Never in the final again.

    Rod Langway was a depth player on Montreal in 1979 as a rookie. Was traded to Washington in 1982 and we all know how Washington fares in the playoffs.
     
  13. Hardyvan123

    Hardyvan123 [email protected]

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    It's probably too early to talk about stall for the hall but he is on the right path and barring injury I'd give a 70% shot as this point of making it in, considering he is only 26 .
     
  14. TheMoreYouKnow

    TheMoreYouKnow Registered User

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    Matthew Lombardi might be a candidate, got to the Finals in 04 with the Flames in his rookie year, nothin since then. He's obviously by no means a player that will be remembered as special and still young enough to get a few more shots though the concussion issues might cut his career short, who knows.
     
  15. GKJ

    GKJ Global Moderator

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    Dainius Zubrus was an 18-year old rookie, who had something of a breakout 1997 post season (21 points in 68 games during the season, 9 points in 19 playoff games). Only got past the 2nd round once since with Buffalo in 2007.

    Brenden Morrow was a rookie on the 2000 Stars team that lost in the Finals vs. the Devils

    Alexei Kovalev was a rookie on the Rangers 1994 Cup Champs, only made it back to the Conference Finals with the Penguins in 2001

    Don Sweeney was a really good, underrated defenseman for the Bruins in the '90s. His first full year in the league was the year the Bruins lost the Oilers in 1990, and the Bruins never got back. He left Boston for Dallas for his last NHL season in 2003-04.
     
  16. pnep

    pnep Registered User

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    Beaupre Don
    Fleury Theo
    Lafontaine Pat
    Langway Rod
    Marois Mario
    Russell Phil
    Butcher Garth
    Flatley Patrick
    Hajt Bill
    Marshall Bert
    Mcammond Dean
    Mceachern Shawn
    Mosienko Bill
    Bradley Brian W.
    Dineen Gord
    Gare Danny
    Grant Danny
    Hillman Wayne
    Maloney Don
    Peeters Pete
    Hamill Red
    Karpovtsev Alexander
    Kravchuk Igor
    Lalor Mike
    Rolston Brian
    Savard Andre
    Bureau Marc
    Dejordy Denis
    Jovanovski Ed
    Lamb Joe
    Maloney Dan
    Plasse Michel
    Zednik Richard
    Bordeleau J.P.
    Eriksson Anders
    Gagnon Johnny
    Knuble Michael
    Marks John G.
    Niinimaa Janne
    Prospal Vaclav
    Ravlich Matt
    Russell Cam
    Smyth Greg
    Tambellini Steve
    Zubrus Dainius
     
  17. jcbio11

    jcbio11 Registered User

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    Jeremy Roenick.
     
  18. tarheelhockey

    tarheelhockey Highest Boss

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    I was just about to say this. Roenick immediately came to mind as a guy who had all the tools to be a multi-Cup winner, and never even got back to the dance
     
  19. nutbar

    nutbar Registered User

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    Steve Payne - 29 points in 19 playoff games in 1981.
     
  20. Darrelle Lundqvist

    Darrelle Lundqvist Swagelin

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    Kovalev was in his second year with the rangers in 94 hasnt been back since.
     
  21. ES

    ES Registered User

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    How is that list ordered. Amount of games since last visit to the finals? What's the minimum limit?
     
  22. TheStranger

    TheStranger Registered User

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    I'm pretty sure it's just alphabetical, must have copied it from somewhere...it's not all in alphabetical but the names must have come from different spots. Notice how each section is alphabetical on it's own.

    Beaupre Don
    Fleury Theo
    Lafontaine Pat
    Langway Rod
    Marois Mario
    Russell Phil

    Butcher Garth
    Flatley Patrick
    Hajt Bill
    Marshall Bert
    Mcammond Dean
    Mceachern Shawn
    Mosienko Bill

    Bradley Brian W.
    Dineen Gord
    Gare Danny
    Grant Danny
    Hillman Wayne
    Maloney Don
    Peeters Pete

    Hamill Red
    Karpovtsev Alexander
    Kravchuk Igor
    Lalor Mike
    Rolston Brian
    Savard Andre

    Bureau Marc
    Dejordy Denis
    Jovanovski Ed
    Lamb Joe
    Maloney Dan
    Plasse Michel
    Zednik Richard

    Bordeleau J.P.
    Eriksson Anders
    Gagnon Johnny
    Knuble Michael
    Marks John G.
    Niinimaa Janne
    Prospal Vaclav
    Ravlich Matt
    Russell Cam
    Smyth Greg
    Tambellini Steve
    Zubrus Dainius
     
  23. Lead Role in a Cage

    Lead Role in a Cage Registered User

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    Excluding "star" from the equation, add Mike Craig.
     

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