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Saturday, March 21, 2009
Is Sakic Done?
I've started to wonder over the last couple of weeks whether we've seen the last of Joe Sakic in an NHL uniform. I wouldn't consider him under-rated by any means, but I do think a lot of casual NHL fans may not realize just how good this guy was. When I recently put his career statistics alongside those of other NHL greats the results were surprising even to me.
Joe is 8th all-time in career points, notching more than Jaromir Jagr, Phil Esposito or Stan Mikita. It's doubtful that he'll overtake Mario Lemieux for 7th even if he plays another season, as he sits nearly 100 points behind Super Mario. He has more points than any active player. In fact the closest active player (Mark Recchi) is trailing Sakic by nearly 250 points! He's scored over 600 times and recorded over 1,000 assists. Unless I'm mistaken only 7 players in NHL history have accomplished that. The other 6 are Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Steve Yzerman, Gordie Howe, Marcel Dionne and Mario Lemieux. Pretty good company huh?
With the Avalanche out of the playoff picture I don't think there's any chance he will play again this year. At Joe's age, with a season away from the game and an unfortunate snowblower accident, do you think he's got enough left in the tank to lace up his skates one more time?