Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Paul Coffey Swatch Card

I have another card of Paul Coffey's that I could have used, but I'll save it for another day, seeing as the Stanley Cup playoffs are on the verge of starting and, at least, the team he's shown with on this card is actually in the mix:
That's card #MY-PC from Panini's 2013-14 Crown Royale collection and Mythology Materials sub-set, showing him wearing the Pittsburgh Penguins' black (then-away) uniform, the alternate captain's "A" in full display as well as the shoulder patch commemorating the 1990 All-Star Game. It featured a white game-worn material patch.

Coffey won the Cup with the Pens in 1991, but most people remember the three he won with the high-flying Edmonton Oilers in the 1980s, which might be detrimental to how we remember him nowadays - i.e. as a strictly offensive defenseman who was weak defensively.

And though it's true that the 14-time All-Star Game participant and three-time Canada Cup winner did have seasons where he was -25 in a 103-point 1989-90 season, -18 in a 113-point 1988-89 season and -18 in a 93-point 1990-91 season, he was a +55 (121 points) in 1984-85, +61 (138 points) in 1985-86, and +18 (58 points) in 45 games in the lockout-shortened 1994-95 season - the three years he won the Norris Trophy as the NHL's best defenseman. He was also a +52 in both 1982-83 (96 points) and 1983-84 (126 points).

He holds many NHL records for defensemen:
  • NHL record for most goals in one season by a defenceman: 48 in 1985–86
  • NHL record for most shorthanded goals in one season by a defenceman: 9 in 1985–86
  • NHL record for most points in one game by a defenceman: 8 on March 14, 1986 (2G, 6A, shared with Tom Bladon)
  • Most assists by a defenceman, one game: 6 (tied with 4 others) March 14, 1986
  • Longest point-scoring streak by a defenceman: 28 games in 1985–86
  • Most goals by a defenceman, one playoff year: 12 in 1985
  • Most assists by a defenceman, one playoff year: 25 in 1985
  • Most points by a defenceman, one playoff year: 37 in 1985
  • Most shorthanded goals by a defenceman, one playoff year: 2 in 1983 and in 1996
  • Most different teams played on by a 1,000-point scorer: 9 (Edmonton, Pittsburgh, Los Angeles Kings, Detroit Red Wings, Hartford Whalers, Philadelphia Flyers, Chicago Blackhawks, Carolina Hurricanes and Boston Bruins)
  • Most PIMs by a 1000-point defenceman: 1802
And yet, his name is usually uttered as a downright insult, as was the case when current Kings GM Dean Lombardi compared current point-per-game defenseman and Ottawa Senators captain Erik Karlsson to Coffey in an effort to make his own star defender, Drew Doughty, look better in terms of Norris voting.

Coffey might be the Hall Of Famer who gets the least respect in all of hockey. You would think over 1500 regular-season points and 196 more in the playoffs to go with four First Team All-Star and another four Second Team All-Star nods would get people to say things like "whoa, could he ever fly from back there, like a faster Bobby Orr when he took the puck from his own end and managed to either bring it up-ice himself or carry it out all the way to Wayne Gretzky", but no; instead, he is remembered as the guy who would sometimes lose the puck by trying to deke out all five opponents at once, though it's not like he was the one who scored an own goal to eliminate his team.

No comments:

Post a Comment