Its a truism in the west that we don't like to speak ill of the dead. If Gary Bettman died tomorrow, the media would be full of stories of what a great guy he was, how he loved his family, all the charity work he did that no-one knew about.....
With Shawn Burr, its very obvious - VERY obvious - that he was a genuinely great guy. Various forums, news sites, Facebook, are all full of little personal anecdotes like the one Echolalia tells above. The mother whose murdered son was a friend of his daughter, the beer league team he bought a full set of kit for, his interaction with fans away from the rink.
Shawn Burr was a genuinely larger than life character, a giant-assed goofball with a heart of gold.
Me too, I have never been a big fan of him great player but questionable attitude and not a very loyal guy.
Really? I agree that he doesn't care about the logo on his jersey, but his proffesionalism and off-ice work ethic are well known. At 41 he just scored 16 goals in 45 games - more than anyone on the Wings btw. More than Franzen, more than Brunner, more than Z. You can't do that with a bad attitude.
This was inspired by me and GMR jesting in another thread about how important Dmitri Bykov was to Lidstrom's 3rd Norris trophy, and it got me thinking to the um, variable, quality of his partners, particularly in his Norris years. So here is my attempt to compile a season by season list.
I do require you guys help to fill in the gaps in my fading memory. Please note I am not looking for every partner he played with that year, just his main even strength partner.
Names in Bold are Norris years, names in Italics indicate a career year for that partner.
94-95: Bettman / Coffey (won Norris)
Have at it guys, I'll edit this post with updates and corrections as we go. Thanks
Honestly, the ridiculous standards that some Wings fans hold up for number retirement these days, we'd better un-retire Lindsay, Delvecchio and Abel, because they don't qualify. Hell, even Yzerman, he's not all-NHL all-time quality, so he doesn't count either. Just Sawchuk, Howe and Lidstrom it is.
IMO, Datsyuk is a yes. 4 more seasons and he will be ~1050 points, more than Ullman, Lindsay, Fedorov, Abel etc and good for 5th all time in Wings scoring (only Howe, Yzerman, Lidstrom and Delvecchio will have more)....throw in (at least) 3 Selkes, 4 Lady Byngs, 2 Stanley Cups and an incredible human-highlight-reel style of play and I don't see how you can say no.
Zetterberg is going to be borderline. A lot depends on how his health holds up, and what he achieves in the 2nd half of his career. He could easily accumulate 1000+ points, but he might need a bit more silverware.
Fedorov, by any measure should be straight up there.............except for the manner of his departure. That was one reason why I hoped he would come back late in his career, so he could have a rapproachment with the fans/management. Hopefully he'll appear in one of the legends games at the WC to begin his rehabilitation.
Anyway, what impresses me the most is that only 2 teams average more than 41 wins per season, Jersey @ 43.6 and us at a whopping 47.7. An average of 48 wins per season, over 22 seasons? That's just insane.