Skip to main content

John Markell

John Markell was a hard working left winger with good straight ahead speed. He lacked the size, the creativity and the finish to play regularly at the NHL level.

Markell played two very quiet years with the Cornwall Royals of the QMJHL before opting to jump to the American college route in 1975. It was still pretty uncommon for college players to make the NHL back then. Most players went to college more to get an education than to persue their NHL dreams. This was the case for Markell, though he never gave up on his dream.

Markell, perhaps a bit of a late bloomer, developed into a good goal scorer with a bit of a mean streak with Bowling Green of the CCHA. In 4 years he average just under 30 goals and about 60 points a year in the 40 game-or-so schedule. Those numbers caught the attention of the Winnipeg Jets, who signed Markell for their inaugural NHL season.

Markell had a pretty decent rookie year in 1979-80. The Jets were an absolutely terrible team, but Markell played admirably in the bad situation. He scored 10 goals and 17 points in 38 games, while splitting the season with the minor leagues. In the CHL where he spent the rest of the year with Tulsa, Markell played well, scoring 15 goals and 29 points in 35 contests.

Markell however had a tough time sticking in Winnipeg in 1980-81. This was due largely to the fact that he suffered from mononucleosis, and never fully recovered until after the end of the year.

Markell was involved in a big trade in the summer of 1981. He was basically a throw in as the Jets sent promising physical defenseman Scott Campbell to St. Louis for sharpshooting RW Paul McLean, defenseman Bryan Maxwell and backup goalie Ed Staniowski.

Blues GM Emile Francis called Markell "a 100 percent-er who can contend for a spot at left wing and will get a chance to make this club. I saw Markell at Bowling Green, and he can be a good goal scorer."

However Markell was quickly buried on the Blue's LW depth chart. Captain Brian Sutter was the team's top left wing, while scorers Jorgen Petterson and Perry Turnbull also held down spots. Spunky Jim Nill and defensive ace Ralph Klassen shared the 4th line role, leaving Markell in the minors.

Markell played the next three years with the Blues farm teams in the CHL. He developed each year into more of a scoring threat, and by 1983-84 he led the entire CHL in goal scoring with 44. He also finally got his chance to play with the Blues, appearing in just 2 games.

A free agent at the end of that season, Markell signed with the Minnesota North Stars organization, hoping to get a better chance to play. However things never worked out there either. Aside from one lonely game, Markell spent the entire injury troubled year in the American Hockey League.

Markell took a different direction starting in 1985-86, heading across the Atlantic to finish his hockey career.


Popular posts from this blog

100 Greatest Hockey Players Of All Time

What follows is a listing of the 100 greatest hockey players of all time, in my opinion. As discussed earlier, the definition of greatness is a very personalized endeavor and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
While there is no way of ever truly ranking the top 100 definitively, it is important for the creators of such lists to be open and transparent of how the came to their conclusions. That accountability allows the reader to better understand the process. 

Although admittedly I'm using a completely unscientific formula, I weigh career achievements (era statistics, awards, championships) and legacy (impact on and off ice, peak dominance) equally high. I rank player ability as the third most important ingredient, as first and foremost as a tie breaker. Hence, I'm not necessarily looking for the better player, as in text book definitions of what a hockey player should be, but for players with the greatest careers and greatest legacies. Therefore the best player is not n…

Top Ten Junior Players Of All Time

Let's take a look at the Top Ten junior players of all time. For the purposes of this list we will at players in the WHL, OHL and QMJHL only.

10. Pat Lafontaine, Verdun, QMJHL Rookie-record 104 goals, 234 points in 1982-83; major junior player of the year.

9. Denis Potvin, Ottawa, OHL 254 games, 95 goals, 234 assists, 329 points. Broke Bobby Orr's junior records.

8. John Tavares, Oshawa, OHL 215 goals, 433 points in 247 games; most goals in OHL history; eligibility rules changed to admit him at 15; 2006 major junior rookie of the year, 2007 major junior player of the year; two world juniors, named 2009 all-star, top forward and MVP.

7. Sidney Crosby, Rimouski, QMJHL 120 goals, 303 points in 121 games; two-time major junior player of the year; silver and gold with Canada at two world juniors.

6. Eric Lindros, Oshawa, OHL 97 goals, 216 points in 95 games; one Memorial Cup victory; three world junior tournaments; major junior player of the year in 1991.

5. Mike Bossy, Laval, Q…

Greatest Hockey Legends: M