Saturday, August 10, 2019

Kyle Turris Jersey Card

It's been an interesting first decade into the career of Kyle Turris.

He started off as the third-overall pick of the 2007 draft, behind Patrick Kane and James van Riemsdyk, and ahead of Thomas Hickey (4th), Karl Alzner (5th), Sam Gagner (6th), Jakub Voracek (7th), Logan Couture (9th), Brandon Sutter (11th), Ryan McDonagh (12th), Lars Eller (13th), Kevin Shattenkirk (14th), Max Pacioretty (22nd), Mikael Backlund (24th), David Perron (26th), P.K. Subban (43rd), Aaron Palushaj (44th), Wayne Simmonds (61st), Evgeny Dadonov (71st), Yannick Weber (73rd), Alex Killorn (77th), Robert Bortuzzo (78th), Nick Palmieri (79th), Alec Martinez (95th), Colton Sceviour (112th), Matt Halischuk (117th), Jamie Benn (129th), Jake Muzzin (141st), Patrick Maroon (161st), Carl Hagelin (168th), Nick Bonino (173rd), Paul Byron (179th), Carl Gunnarsson (194th), Justin Braun (201st) and Paul Postma (205th).

It wasn't too long before he essentially asked out of Phoenix, however; indeed, as soon as his ELC ended, he asked for $4M per season so the Coyotes would balk at the offer, and said "trade me or pay me double my market worth for me to stay", so he was sent to the Ottawa Senators, where he was pretty much the go-to centre for his tenure, particularly starting in 2014-15, following Jason Spezza's departure.

Another contractual impasse led to his being sent to the Nashville Predators via the Colorado Avalanche in a three-team trade in November 2017, and he promptly signed a six-year, $36M deal ($6M per) to remain in Nashville as their 1B/#2 centre.

He did well enough - albeit not exceptionally well, but he did have to get used to new surroundings, new teammates and a new playing system - in his first season in Music City, with 42 points in 65 games to finish up his old contract, but his 7 goals, 16 assists and 23 points in 55 games last season can only be described as unbecoming of a $6M contract.

At 29 years of age, there should still be at least three more seasons of high-end, second-line hockey left in the fluid-skating, swift-passing Turris, and his two-way smarts and hockey sense should carry him over to potent checking-line centre in the final two years of his deal... if all goes well.

The main problem with him throughout his career is that almost every time he was set to take on a larger role in an organization, or as soon as people started realizing the good he was doing, or if he was relied upon too lead like- let's say - in the playoffs, he would enter a long slump that would mess everything up. Not just for him, usually for the team as well.

Case in point: as the Preds made their way to the second round in 2017-18 - a year removed from a Stanley Cup Final when the expectations were that they would go on another long run - he couldn't score a single goal and could only muster up 3 assists in 13 games. Same thing this past Spring, where he was limited to a goal and an assist in 6 games.

And the Preds have two such overpaid/under-performing middle-of-the-lineup centermen with Bonino, not to mention another underachieving $8M first-line centre in Ryan Johansen, who has reached the 70-point mark only once in his career - and never with Nashville. It's a problem the team will have to address, and at some point, one they'll have to stop trying to address by sacrificing very good defensemen (Subban, Samuel Girard).

Here is Turris from his days in Arizona, wearing their white (away) uniform on card #RJ-KT from Upper Deck's 2008-09 Be A Player set and Rookie Jerseys sub-set:
It is numbered #20/299, with a fairly big burgundy jersey swatch, although UD is using double-speak to try to pass this event-worn jersey for a game-worn one on the back of the card:
That is some bullshit if I've ever seen any: "Game-used" and "been used in a rookie photo shoot". I guess those Upper Deck photo shoots have real stakes that no one knows about.

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