Randy's Ramblings - 11/30/2012

Friday, 11.30.2012 / 11:11 AM
By Randy Hahn - Sharks TV, Play-by-Play Broadcaster / The Daily Chomp
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Randy\'s Ramblings - 11\/30\/2012

The annual Hockey Hall of Fame induction ceremony recently got me thinking. What if there was such a thing as a San Jose Sharks Hall of Fame? Who would be the inaugural inductees?

First of all these would be my ground rules. Current NHLers wouldn’t be eligible in the player category and the basic rule of thumb would be that any player considered for induction would be judged solely on his contribution to the Sharks franchise during his time with the team no matter how many other clubs he eventually played for.

I’m going to go with three “SJSHOF" categories: Player, Coach and Builder.

1. Builder Category

This one was the easiest for me. It has to be George Gund, the founding majority owner of the San Jose Sharks. George saw the potential for a successful return of the NHL to the Bay Area back in the early 90’s when the City of San Jose decided to construct a new arena downtown. Gund was so bullish on San Jose that he brokered the sale of his Minnesota North Stars so that he could have exclusive hockey rights in the new building. The rest is history.

The Sharks have been one of the most successful of the NHL’s Sun Belt expansion franchises and for the better part of two decades, Gund was at the ownership helm. Already a member of the US Hockey Hall of Fame, George is a lover of the sport and the Sharks just wouldn’t be the same without him and his vision. Current GM Doug Wilson, the team's first captain, would be my runner up for his excellence in drafting and developing talent and consistently getting the franchise into the playoffs and deep into the postseason.

2. Coach Category

Ron Wilson has won more games as Sharks head coach than anyone else (206). Darryl Sutter has coached the most games (434). And Todd McLellan has the best winning percentage (.681). But my pick for first ever head coaching inductee is Kevin Constantine.

In 1993-94 Constantine, a NHL coaching rookie, took over a Sharks team that had gone 11-71-2 the prior year and transformed them into a playoff club. Not only that, but they shocked the top-seeded Red Wings in the first round of the playoffs and almost took down the Toronto Maple Leafs in the second round. A year later the Sharks would advance to the second round again ousting Calgary in a Game 7 double-overtime thriller. Under Constantine’s steady hand the Sharks experienced the biggest single season turnaround in NHL history that 93-94 year and he helped put the team on the NHL map in a big way.

3. Player category

Obviously this is the most difficult area in which to narrow the list down to just one player. Igor Larionov is in the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. Igor was a catalyst on that 93-94 Sharks team along with line mate Sergei Makarov. But Larionov is more remembered for his glory days with the Russian National Team and his three Stanley Cups with Detroit.

Mike Ricci might win the all-time fan popularity contest. Among some of the Sharks goaltenders, you could make a strong argument that Arturs Irbe, among others, is worthy of “SJ Hall” consideration. On the blueline, Sandis Ozolinsh still holds the franchise record for points by a defenseman in a season with 64.

But my first ever player inductee would be Owen Liam Nolan. “Buster” came to the Sharks early in 1995-96 from Colorado and played the best hockey of his career in teal. He was a fierce competitor and forceful leader and captain. Still a fan favorite to this day, Nolan was also a big game player. His Game 7 series-clinching goal in St. Louis in the 2000 Stanley Cup Playoffs is still one of the biggest postseason moments in franchise history. Owen still holds franchise records for the most power play goals (75) and shorthanded goals (14).

For SJSHARKS.com, I'm Randy Hahn.

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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Pavelski 82 41 38 23 79
J. Thornton 82 11 65 20 76
P. Marleau 82 33 37 0 70
L. Couture 65 23 31 21 54
B. Burns 69 22 26 26 48
T. Wingels 77 16 22 11 38
D. Boyle 75 12 24 -8 36
J. Demers 75 5 29 14 34
T. Hertl 37 15 10 11 25
M. Nieto 66 10 14 -4 24
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Stalock 12 5 2 .932 1.87
A. Niemi 39 17 7 .913 2.39
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