What Happened to These 80s Players (Chouinard, Pavelich, Rogers, Stoughton)?

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by GlitchMarner, Aug 17, 2017.

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  1. GlitchMarner

    GlitchMarner Formerly 29GoalHoglund

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    Anyone know what happened to these guys?

    It seems like they were big time scorers who just fizzled out and vanished.

    I was going through Chouinard's profile on hockey reference and noticed that he suddenly stopped player at age 27 - just two years after scoring 80 points in 64 games. He had previously peaked at 107 points in 1979.

    Wikipedia says he was traded to STL for future considerations in 1983 (following a 72 point season with Calgary) and that he opted to retire after starting the '84-'85 season with Peoria in the AHL.

    Why was he demoted to the AHL when he was younger than 30 and had proven to be able to produce in the NHL?

    He had only 46 points in 64 games in his lone season with STL (not great totals for that time), but why did the Blues - who weren't exactly loaded back then - not give him another chance? Why did the Flames just dump him anyway?

    https://www.hockey-reference.com/players/c/chouigu01.html


    As for Pavelich, he started off with three straight seasons of 75 or more points and then became less productive (45 points in 48 games and 40 in 59). He had 10 points in 12 games with Minny in '87 and then left the NHL altogether until making a brief comeback with the Sharks in '91.

    Apparently he was on USA's "Miracle on Ice" team in 1980...

    https://www.hockey-reference.com/players/p/pavelma02.html


    Mike Rogers went from the WHA to the NHL and had 100+ points in his first three seasons. His production fell off in the next three years and then he had five points in 17 games split between the Rangers and Oilers and was gone.

    https://www.hockey-reference.com/players/r/rogermi01.html


    Blaine Stoughton played in the NHL in the 1970s before jumping to the WHA. He returned to the NHL in '79-'80 and had 100 points in his first season back.

    He had some more 70+ point seasons for the Whalers and then his production tapered off when he scored 44 points in 68 games in a season split between the Whalers and Rangers. After that, he was done in the NHL at age 30.

    https://www.hockey-reference.com/players/s/stougbl01.html



    Does anyone know why these players fell off at a relatively young age and why they didn't get more chances to play in the big League?
     
  2. Canadiens1958

    Canadiens1958 Registered User

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    Short Shift Game

    ^^^ Basically all had problems adapting to the short shift game and the changes it demand in the mid 1980s.
     
  3. VanIslander

    VanIslander Don't waste my time

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    Forget point totals. They mislead, as so many players put up gawdy numbers as the WHA folded, the NHL expanded and the high-flyin' eighties began.

    Chouinard had one season where he was 4th in goals and 9th in assists and then one season where he was 10th in assists. Hockey history is full of such one year great, one or two year goodness.

    Rogers was 6th and 9th in assists in the NHL right after the WHA. The next season he scored 103 NHL points and wasn't either top-10 in goals or assists!! The NHL was that lit in scorers.

    Stoughton led the NHL in goals his first year outside the WHA, then had a 6th in NHL goals two years after that. I was in middle school back then and remember him as soft defensively.

    I suspect these WHAers had bad habits defensively as they were open-ice loosy goosy types. I was finishing elementary school at the tail end of the WHA and it was exciting to watch but my dad called it "sloppy" play. When he made us sloppy joes for dinner, he called it "the WHA".:laugh:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Mmmm. Memories like that you don't forget!
     
  4. Killion

    Killion Registered User

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    ^^^ :laugh: cute story.....








    ... now I'm hungry. :(
     
  5. Passchendaele

    Passchendaele Registered User

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    Chouinard was a supremely talented hockey player.

    He started his Jr. career at 14 years old.. if you can believe it. By the time he was 18, he had already torn the Q apart (albeit behind the Cloutier-Locas-Nantais line) and was playing pro hockey (a rare feat in those days).

    Two years after that fifty-goal, 107 pts season, he was on pace for 128 points, then 100 the following year.

    This guy strikes me as a big what-if.. possibly a HOF talent.
    Not unlike other former QMJHL stars of the time like Jacques Richard or Real Cloutier.
     
  6. BM67

    BM67 Registered User

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    Some info on Chouinard.

    He suffered shoulder, groin and eye injuries while with Calgary. Not sure what happened to end his career, but he was bought out of the final year of his contract by StL.

    His points dropped off mainly due to a decline in goals scored, at the same time his shooting percentage dropped, and his reliance on the PP for points climbed.

    Looking at his last year in StL, he had 33 points in 41 games in early January, leaving him 13 points in 23 games over the second half of the season, and only 2 points in 5 of 11 playoff games.

    So at the end he was a #3/4 center PP specialist in decline, who was out of the lineup half the time.
     
  7. Hoser

    Hoser Registered User

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    Mike Rogers had groin and back injuries in '82-'83 which slowed his skating, and was concussed by Cam Neely in a game late in the '84-'85 season. That was it for his career.

    Guy Chouinard had a multitude of injuries in the early '80s and by '83 the writing was on the wall.

    Mark Pavelich had injuries in his last couple years with the Rangers but what really ended his career was Rangers coach Ted Sator. Pavelich hated Sator, who replaced Herb Brooks in January of '85. Pavelich was there in the first place, signed as a free agent, because of Brooks and Craig Patrick. Sator thought Pavelich was too soft, and Pavelich thought Sator was simply 'mean', so he walked out and never played for the Rangers again. I suspect after all that he wasn't particularly enthused about pro hockey anymore.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2017
  8. Theokritos

    Theokritos Moderator

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    It's pretty funny that both Mark Pavelich and Ted Sator ended up in the Italian league a few years later. Pavelich played for HC Bolzano from 1987-1989 and Sator coached Silvio Berlusconi's team in Milano from 1991-1993.
     
  9. crobro

    crobro Registered User

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    Mike Rogers shares a record with Wayne Gretzky , Mario and Peter Stastny as the only players to score 100 points their first 3 seasons in the NHL.
     
  10. Killion

    Killion Registered User

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    Sator a "dump n' chase" proponent as well, and that didnt sit well with Pavelich. He did join the Minnesota North Stars where Brooks had landed the following season but only played 12 games for them (odd as it was Brooks again, his home State) and also played a game for Dundee in the British League before heading to Italy where he spent a couple of years... did apparently try to make a comeback with San Jose in 91 I believe it was.
     
  11. GlitchMarner

    GlitchMarner Formerly 29GoalHoglund

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    His numbers with MIN during his brief stint look solid. Any reason why he decided to go to Europe instead of staying with the North Stars?
     
  12. Killion

    Killion Registered User

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    I seem to recall reading somewhere that after his public dispute with NY over Coaching & quitting, he was traded to Minnesota, reported & did play well (excellent 2 way, smaller guy at 5'8" & 170lbs) but only did so in order to beef up his marketability & negotiating leverage in signing with a European Club (Bolzano in Italy) which as an NHL player he would have had. Had he not reported, signing as a Free Agent with Bolzano or wherever, less leverage, less money. So it seems no matter what, he was done with the NHL Game & Lifestyle at that time, only reporting to Minny as a stepping stone to going on to play in Italy.... As a sidebar... he also apparently sold his Gold Medal from the 1980 Olympics for just shy of $300,000, a hot commodity on the collectors market. Sold it as he needed a chunk of change for one of his kids College Funds. So clearly a guy with one eye on the dollar at all times.
     
  13. Theokritos

    Theokritos Moderator

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    The New York Rangers offered him to trade him to another NHL team, but Pavelich had his mind set on other shores:

    Why Scotland?

    He played in one or two games for Dundee Rockets (Scotland) in September 1986 before the New York Rangers had him barred from continuing via the IIHF. The Rangers then traded his rights to the Minnesota North Stars in October 1986, but Pavelich didn't report. He only changed his mind in March 1987, but not because he really wanted to resume his NHL career:

    After the season, he signed with Bolzano. Why did he prefer to return to Europe (he had already played in Switzerland for one season in 1980-1981)?

     
  14. Killion

    Killion Registered User

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    ^^^ Aha. Thanks Theo. More color. Interesting guy, player.
     
  15. MS

    MS 1%er

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    The sport in the 1980s was changing and improving at an incredible rate. If you compare a game from 1980 to a game from 1990, the difference in speed and pace is astonishing.

    An offshoot of this is that players born in the early-mid 1950s tended to have very short careers as the sport passed them by very quickly as they started to age. Almost nobody except HHOF-type guys did much of anything past the age of 30, and even superstars like Sittler/Lafleur/Trottier were toast as point producers by the age of 33 or so. Still producing in the NHL at age 35 was unheard-of. This phenomenon ESPECIALLY killed guys who were slower or weak defensively and couldn't adapt the the higher-paced, shorter-shift, more systems-oriented game that the sport had become toward the end of the decade - all of which save Pavelich are the type of guy listed in the original post. Pavelich was just a different sort of guy who basically walked away from the sport.

    The rate at which the speed of the game was improving slowed considerably in the 1990s, and you start seeing players born in the early-mid 1960s having much longer careers and being productive into their mid-30s again, as we saw with 1940s-born players in the 1970s.
     
  16. jumptheshark

    jumptheshark Rebooting myself Sponsor

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    and could not learn to play the two way game needed
     
  17. xyz1

    xyz1 Registered User

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    Pavelich is a very interesting dude who marches to the beat of his own drum. He's an admitted loner from a small town in northern Minnesota and loves to hunt and fish, and from what you read never really liked playing in New York or the entire NHL lifestyle; I do know Sator's coaching took a toll on him. He keeps a very low profile living in the woods, and only rarely shows up for '80 Olympic team reunion events. His wife died a few years back when she fell of a balcony at their house in the Minnesota woods.
     
  18. Garl

    Garl Registered User

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    When I see discussions like this, I almost always see how guys try to think systematically and explain it with some of the following: oh, game just passed them by, it became faster, coaches became smarter, players started training seriously, nutrition became better, goalies became better, defensemen became better etc etc, yet every human being is an individual, and every case is individual. Take a look at more recent examples:

    Vincent Lecavalier declined rapidly after 30, why?
    Scott Gomez stopped being relevant even before 30, why?
    Dany Heatley turned from a premier goalscorer into a DEL player in 3 years, why?
    Alex Semin truned from a top sniper into a jobless guy, why?
    Mike Richards declined before 30, why?

    And all of the examples, that I mentioned are not even some guys who were injured like Havlat.


    if it is because "sport has passed them by", then it seems that DEL circa 2017 is better than NHL circa 2007. At least, based on Dany Heatley performance.
     
  19. GlitchMarner

    GlitchMarner Formerly 29GoalHoglund

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    To summarize the points made so far...

    Chouinard and Rogers had some injuries and Pavelich didn't get along with a certain coach and also didn't enjoy the NHL lifestyle and wanted to play elsewhere.

    Rogers and Stoughton had come from the WHA, a League that didn't emphasize great defensive play, and they weren't nearly as useful when their scoring declined.

    Then on top of everything else, the NHL changed in some ways while the players I asked about aged and they weren't able to adjust...

    There was more to their declines than just "the NHL evolved rapidly."

    I typically don't like that reasoning myself, especially when it's applied to a short length of time.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2018

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