October 26, 2012

Todd Harvey: Heat Seeking Missile

Coming out of junior there was high hopes for young Todd Harvey.

It was well warranted - he was a heart and soul player who began his junior career as the top midget player drafted into the OHL in 1991. Before it was all said and done he was named captain of Team Canada's World Juniors team in 1995, winning back to back gold medals at the WJCs in 1994 and 1995. In many ways he was the prototypical Canadian player.

Dallas drafted Todd Harvey 9th overall in 1993, ahead of the likes of Adam Deadmarsh, Saku Koivu and Todd Bertuzzi. He would go onto a NHL career that lasted an impressive 671 games over 11 seasons. He was a coach's dream and a fan favorite.

Yet in some ways Todd Harvey did not live up to the hype. He never emerged as a top six forward. He never scored more than 11 goals in a season. Because of his physical play he was oft-injured.

Ultimately Todd Harvey became the ultimate 4th line hockey player who was shoehorned into 3rd line role much of his career. He was a versatile mid-sized crasher and banger who played with a fearless kamikaze abandon. Despite his inspiring play, he never developed beyond the utility player role. He played far bigger than he actually was. Not surprisingly, his body could only take the beating he put it through for so long.

He may not have developed a top NHL player like he was in junior, but Todd Harvey carved out a nice career was a valuable player in his own right.

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