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Captain Joe Thornton

from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,

You want to wear a sandwich board that blares, “I Don’t Know Jack About Hockey?” Go tell an NHL player that Thornton is the reason why the Sharks have not won a Stanley Cup. “Winning is never about one guy,” says Mike Cammalleri, who puts Thornton in the same league as Pavel Datsyuk and Sidney Crosby when it comes to dictating the pace of a game. Lee Stempniak wonders aloud if there’s another guy in the NHL who is more dangerous on his backhand than his forehand or, at least, Thornton’s equal....

Hockey in general loves its labels. In Thornton’s case, it’s the big, slower-moving player who gets the “lazy” tag. Or the, “he-doesn’t-want-it-bad-enough” label. It goes back to Frank Mahovlich, runs through Tim Kerr and Dave Andreychuk, and settles on the plate next to Dustin Penner’s pancakes. “The debate that exists out there is because of his personality,” says San Jose coach Todd McLellan, who was an assistant in Detroit, where true leadership was everywhere. He compares the Thornton we never see to Steve Yzerman in Detroit, whose intensity was more palpable to those on the outside. “Every now and then the door shuts, and Jumbo is able to bring things to order.”

Then the door opens and Jumbo is smiling again, talking about the weather. Nothing to see here, folks. Just two or three playoff rounds every year for nearly a decade, like clockwork, and a point per game for 15-plus seasons.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: joe+thornton

Comments

MOWingsfan19's avatar

Joe Thornton’s name should never be in the same sentence as the best player on the Wings.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 11/12/13 at 12:52 PM ET

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The fact remains that the Sharks have never gotten any farther with Thornton, than they did without him.

Posted by jpsf on 11/12/13 at 01:30 PM ET

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The fact remains that the Sharks have never gotten any farther with Thornton, than they did without him.

So?

In eight years with him they’ve won more playoffs series than they did in 13 years without him, and they haven’t missed the playoffs since he got there either.

Stats without context mean nothing.

Posted by Garth on 11/12/13 at 02:08 PM ET

Primis's avatar

The fact remains that the Sharks have never gotten any farther with Thornton, than they did without him.

Posted by jpsf on 11/12/13 at 12:30 PM ET

Same for the Bruins.

Posted by Primis on 11/12/13 at 02:08 PM ET

pautna's avatar

Here’s a stat with full context included. ZERO Stanley Cups.

Posted by pautna on 11/12/13 at 02:42 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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