Saturday, October 9, 2010
Pierre Turgeon was drafted 1st overall in the 1987 NHL Entry Draft by the Buffalo Sabres and begain his NHL career in 1987-88 with a serviceable 42 points in 76 games. He more than doubled that total in just his second season with his first 30 goal season when he scored 34 goals and 54 assists for 88 points. He cemented his place as a fan favorite and team leader the next season with his first 100 point season, when he hit the 40 goal plateau and tallied 106 points. Once again he reached 30 goals in 1990-91 with 32, although his overall scoring dipped to 79 points.
In the first of some notable trades, Turgeon was dealt to the New York Islands along with Benoit Houge, Uwe Krupp and Dave McLlwain for Pat LaFontaine, Randy Wood and Randy Hiller plus future considerations.
He was a fan favorite on Long Island and would lead the Islanders in scoring, by margins of 7, 45 and 19 points, during his three full seasons with the club and finish tied for second the year he was traded away, despite playing in only 34 games, such was the state of the lowly Islanders in 1994-95.
His best season with the Islanders was the 1992-93 season when he would net 58 goals and add 74 assists for a 132 points, placing 5th overall in the league in what would prove to be his highest scoring season as a pro. He was also awarded the Lady Byng Trophy after the conclusion of the season.
Turgeon accepts the Lady Byng Trophy
When Islanders General Manager Don Maloney traded Turgeon to the Montreal Canadiens in 1994-95, concerned that Turgeon would never be the same player after the Dale Hunter incident, it turned into a nightmare for the Islanders, as Canadiens captain Kirk Muller was the main player the Islanders received in return for Turgeon, and Muller was clearly at a point in his career where he wanted to compete for another Stanley Cup, and not lead the downtrodden Islanders back to respectability. In the end, Muller would play just 27 games for the Islanders while Turgeon was named captain of the Canadiens for the final season at the historic Montreal Forum in which he scored 38 goals and 96 points.
After only nine games of the 1996-97 season, Turgeon was once again on the move, this time to St. Louis to join the Blues in a five player deal that brought Shayne Corson to Montreal. There, Turgeon found a level of stability, playing five seasons with St. Louis, where he averaged more than a point per game (1.09) with a high of 82 in 2000-01. His time in St. Louis included scoring his 1,000th point on this date in 1999 with a power play goal in a 4-2 win over the Edmonton Oilers.
After five seasons in St. Louis, Turgeon signed on with the Dallas Stars as a free agent for the 2001-02 season. His offensive numbers reflected his changed role while with the Stars as he did not surpass 50 points again in his career, something that had only occurred once before in his career when he had 47 points in 49 games during the strike shortened season of 1994-95 while splitting time between the Islanders and Canadiens.
Following three years with Dallas, he signed as a free agent with the Colorado Avalanche coming out of the NHL lockout of 2004-05. While with Colorado that first season, Turgeon reached the 500 goal mark, just the 34th player in NHL history to reach that elusive milestone. He was limited to just 17 games by various injuries in his final season of 2006-07 and retired from the NHL in September of 2007.
Turgeon displays his 500th goal puck
His career point totals were 515 goals and 812 assists for 1,327 points in 1,294 games, a 1.03 point per game average for his entire 19 year NHL career.
Today's featured jersey is a 1999-2000 St. Louis Blues Pierre Turgeon jersey as worn during the season Turgeon scored his 1,000th NHL point as a member of the Blues.
The Blues changed to this style jersey full time after introducing a white version of this style as an alternate in 1997. They promoted that very well received jersey to the primary home jersey the following season and created today's blue road version to round out the set which replaced the controversial previous set which had repeating diagonal stripes and road jerseys with an unprecedented amount of red.
Turgeon is a fun player to collect, as his instantly recognizable #77 has been worn on the classic Sabres jersey with the Sabres 20th Anniversary patch and later the NHL 75th Anniversary patch, the classic New York Islanders jersey with both the NHL 75th Anniversary patch and the Islanders 20th Anniversary patch in 1991-92 and the Stanley Cup Centennial patch in 1992-93.
He then wore the iconic jerseys of the Montreal Canadiens while wearing both the assistant's "A" and captain's "C", the Blues jerseys with the repeating diagonal stripes and the subsequent set featured today with the NHL 2000 patch, both Blues styles with the assistant captain's "A", the wonderful Dallas Stars set with the integrated star shape in the body, the bizarre Stars "Mooterus" alternate, the championship era Colorado Avalanche jerseys (while wearing the unfamiliar #87), including their diagonally crested burgundy alternate, with the Avalanche 10th Anniversary patch and the one game only Teammates for Kids patch.
Additionally, Turgeon also played in four NHL All-Star Games in 1990, 1993, 1994 and 1996, giving the collector 16 different jerseys with multiple patching options to pursue.
Today's video section begins with the drafting of Turgeon #1 overall by the Buffalo Sabres.
Next up is his 1,000th NHL point, scored on this date in 1999, which was also his 399th goal.
Finally, Turgeon's first goal as a Montreal Canadien.