Randy's Ramblings - 11/30/2012

Friday, 11.30.2012 / 8:11 AM PT
By Randy Hahn - Sharks Broadcaster / The Daily Chomp
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The Daily Chomp

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 51 24 7 228 221 109
2 y - STL 82 51 24 7 239 197 109
3 x - NSH 82 47 25 10 226 202 104
4 x - CHI 82 48 28 6 220 186 102
5 x - VAN 82 48 29 5 236 220 101
6 x - MIN 82 46 28 8 227 198 100
7 x - WPG 82 43 26 13 223 204 99
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9 LAK 82 40 27 15 218 197 95
10 DAL 82 41 31 10 257 257 92
11 COL 82 39 31 12 209 223 90
12 SJS 82 40 33 9 224 226 89
13 EDM 82 24 44 14 193 276 62
14 ARI 82 24 50 8 165 267 56

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Pavelski 82 37 33 12 70
L. Couture 82 27 40 -6 67
J. Thornton 78 16 49 -4 65
B. Burns 82 17 43 -9 60
P. Marleau 82 19 38 -17 57
T. Wingels 75 15 21 -7 36
T. Hertl 82 13 18 -5 31
M. Nieto 72 10 17 -12 27
M. Karlsson 53 13 11 -3 24
M. Vlasic 70 9 14 12 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Niemi 31 23 7 .914 2.59
A. Stalock 8 9 2 .902 2.62
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