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HOUSEOFHOCKEY  /  NHL  /  NEWS

IT JUST FEELS WRONG - NHL PLAYERS IN THE WRONG JERSEY - PART 2

Published November 25, 2021 at 11:33 PM
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Sometimes things happen and players are traded or choose to sign with a team as a free agent, but that doesn't mean you or I have to like it. Here are five examples of players that played for teams and it just didn't feel right and a lot of the time it just felt wrong.

In our second edition of "It just feels wrong" we take a look at 5 other players that just never fit on some teams.

It Just Feels Wrong - 1st Edition

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Gordie Howe
Mr. Hockey as he was affectionately known spent 1687 games as a member of the Detroit Red Wings. Over that time Howe score 786 goals and added 1023 assists for a total of 1809 points. He also won the Hart Trophy (6x), Art Ross (6x), led the league in goals (5x) and won the Stanley Cup (4x).

Mr. Hockey seemed destined to play his entire career in Hockeytown and when a chronic wrist injury forced him to retire after the 1971 season he joined the Red Wings front office. After spending time with the Red Wings front office he became dissatisfied with his role and chose to have wrist surgery so he could return to the game. Howe returned to the WHA and played multiple seasons until the WHA folded in 1979 the Hartford Whalers joined the NHL as an expansion franchise.

Despite Howe's rights still being held by the Red Wings they agreed not to reclaim him allowing the 52 year old to return to the league. Although his season was moderately successful (15 Goals, 26 Assists) it never felt right seeing Howe in anything but the Red Wings jersey.


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Jarome Iginla
On March 28th, 2013 the Calgary Flames trade Captain Jarome Iginla to the Pittsburgh Penguins at the trade deadline in exchange for Kenny Agostino, Ben Hanowski and a 2013 1st round pick. This marked the end of Iginla's tenure after almost 16 seasons (1219 Games) where Iginla tallied 1095 points. Iginla represented the heart and soul of the Flames and it was gut wrenching for the fan base to see Iginla go, but Iginla hoped to capture that elusive Stanley Cup with Sidney Crosby and the Penguins.

Iginla seemed to fit in well as he scored 11 points in 13 regular season games and added 12 points in 15 playoff games. But the Penguins went on to be swept by the Bruins in the Conference Finals and that brought Iginla's time to a close. Iginla would wear three other jerseys in his carer but none of those ever felt right as Iginla remained a Flame at heart for the rest of his career.


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Paul Coffey
For a defenseman who won the Norris Trophy on 3 separate occasions you'd probably be shocked to hear that Paul Coffey also wore 9 different jerseys over his NHL career. When most people think of Coffey they likely remember the player who scored 48 goals as a member of the Edmonton Oilers or as the Detroit Red Wing who won the Norris Trophy in 1995.

But what many people don't remember or are trying to forget is that Coffey concluded his career as a member of the Boston Bruins in 2000-2001. Coffey played a forgettable 18 games with the Bruins only notching 4 assists while missing time for various injuries (shoulder injury, a hip flexor and a concussion). Coffey's season ended when the Bruins' chose to waive the 39 year old and his contract was not selected by any other team.

This was a sad ending to an amazing career.

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Brett Hull
Brett Hull is most notably known for his time in St. Louis as a member of the Blues, but he eventually went on to be win Stanley Cups in both Dallas and Detroit. Going into the 2004-2005 season Hull signed a 2-year contract with the Phoenix Coyotes, but unfortunately the season was wiped out due to an NHL lockout. Entering the 2005-2006 season Hull had scored 1390 points in 1264 career games and he was looking forward to wearing his father's number for his new team.

Unfortunately the missed 2004-2005 season appeared to take a real toll on Hull's body and the former star player was a shell of his former self. Hull announced his retirement after 5 games and 1 assist stating that his body could no longer perform at the top level he expected of himself.

This was an awful end to Hull's career and represented just another victim of the 2004-2005 lockout.

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Guy Lafleur
Given the talk of the Quebec Nordiques potentially returning it seemed fitting to include a player that wore the blue and white fleur-de-lis. When people think of Lafleur they think of his team in the bleu, blanc et rouge and definitely not playing for the Habs mortal enemies.

Lafleur played 961 games with Montreal and scored 518 goals and had 728 assists, while also capturing the Stanley Cup 5 times. Lafleur retired at the age of 33 as a member of the Canadiens before returning to the league 3 years later with the New York Rangers, but it wasn't until a year later when he signed with the Habs' provincial rivals.

Seeing Lafleur in the Blue and White was only made more difficult by the fact that the Nordiques finished last in the Adams' division in both of Lafleur's seasons in Quebec City. Even so seeing the Canadiens Legend in the fleur-de-lis still never felt right.
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