Jul 28, 2012, 8:20 PM EDT
Joe Thornton isn’t all that old – he’s just 33 – but it feels like people have been discussing his legacy for years now.
Perhaps it comes with the territory of being a high-scoring, huge Canadian forward who was drafted first overall. (Especially when that guy hasn’t satisfied many with his postseason play.)
While he’s still one of the San Jose Sharks’ best players, there’s a feeling that Jumbo Joe’s best days are behind him. With that in mind, a fun question emerges: is he headed toward the Hall of Fame?
Let’s take a Cliffs Notes look at the arguments for and against.
- Just 87 points in 114 career playoff games, far behind his near-point-per-game regular season average.
- Not a great goal-scorer.
- Some expect a more physical style considering his towering size.
- Insert more abstract criticisms about “heart” here.
- Just over a point-per-game in his regular season career (1,078 points in 1,077 games).
- Much better in the postseason with San Jose (69 points in 79 games).
- One Hart Trophy, one Art Ross and six All-Star selections.
- Nine seasons in the top-10 in assists, including three at No.1 overall.
- Five seasons in the top-10 in points, fourth among active players for career points.
Naturally, he still has more hockey ahead of him, but where does Thornton weigh in now?
- On carrying three goalies, and which teams might be forced to do it 6
- Bettman: NHL won’t expand ‘just to fulfill somebody’s notion of symmetry’ 8
- Report: Johansen lowers demands, but not low enough 34
- Injuries piling up as preseason schedule begins 11
- Report: Fedorov denies contract offer was made to Johansen 8
- Report: Johansen has gotten no shortage of KHL offers 44
- Update: Drouin out with upper body injury, not expected to miss preseason 1
- Report: NHL officials to participate in preseason without new CBA 1
- Evander Kane: I know I can score 50 goals 16
- ‘C’-less Thornton comes out swing against Wilson’s ‘tomorrow team’ talk 19
- Heeeeeere’s Johnny! Davidson shreds Johansen’s agent for ‘baffling, nonsensical’ contract demands (65)
- Jackets reveal Johansen offers — including an eight year, $46M deal (55)
- Report: Johansen has gotten no shortage of KHL offers (44)
- No icing on the PK? The USHL will see how that looks (43)
- Just how damaging are heated negotiations between Jackets, RFA Johansen? (38)