Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Durability Matters...Except When It Doesn't

Wendel Clark: 793 games played
Wendel Clark's teams: 1,186 games played
Participation rate: 66.9%

Dominik Hasek, from the time he became a starting goalie in 1993-94 to the end of his career: 682 games played
Dominik Hasek's teams over the same time period (excluding retirement season in 2002-03): 1034 games played
Participation rate: 66.0%

Ask your average Leaf fan about those two players, and one of them will be the biggest injury risk who ever played hockey while the other descended directly from the heavens via Kelvington, Saskatchewan.


VelvetShadows said...

I don't know... I'm a Leafs fan, and I love Clark as much as most Leafs fans do. He's a legend in Toronto.

But I have to think you'd be blind to see that Clark was a huge injury risk and his career was defined more then anything else by his style of play and how often it took him off the ice.
He was never a guy you would expect to play anything close to a full schedule.

I don't think I've ever heard many people deny that.
I'm not sure being injury prone need imply a lack of popularity however.
Plenty of popular players have been injury prone.

Besides Hasek's late career groin issues I'd actually have been far more concerned with Clark for most of the time.
Hasek in his prime with Buffalo wasn't a major concern IMO. Clark's prime was defined by what might have been if he'd been able to stay on the ice.
(Though Clark would have been far less effective had he played a style more conducive to remaining healthy)

Their health isn't the determining factor in their relative popularity.

Anonymous said...

Goalie injuries are much detrimental to their team than any other player.

overpass said...

The comparison is obviously slanted against Hasek, because a healthy goalie will only play 85% of the games, and a healthy player will play 100%.

And yet, you'd miss Hasek more during those games they missed. While Clark was a good player and certainly made a difference in the way the game was played, I'm not sure he was much of a difference-maker in the results. Hasek, of course, was a difference-maker like few others who have ever played the game (personally, I think you could count them on one hand.)

Saying Hasek was so good that his time injured counts more against him is a funny way of knocking him, but it probably adds to the perception that he was injury-prone

Bill Morran said...

I really don't know what the point of this is bud. I love the blog in general, but this doesn't make a whole lot of sense. I'm a Leafs fan, and I know Clark's injuries are generally used as an excuse for him not putting up HOF numbers...I've never heard a Leaf fan say Hasek isn't a HOFer.

Down Goes Brown said...

This one doesn't make much sense. Yes, Leaf fans love Wendel Clark, but even his biggest fan (i.e. me) knows he was injured often.

If you want to slap Leaf fans for thinking Clark would be a first-ballot HOF without all the injuries, fine. But to say we somehow don't realize he missed a lot of games is just odd.