Skip to main content

Hockey Heroes: Stu Barnes

Speedster Stu Barnes was an enthusiastic though undersized player who seemed to defy the odds and be a big time player in the NHL.

Barnes combined speed, a great work ethic and good anticipation skills to last in the NHL for 17 seasons. For me, anyways, he was the kind of guy I'd forget was even in the league still until the day his team came to town. Then he'd have a big game, make a big play or score a big goal, and you'd wonder why you hadn't heard more about him lately.

Barnes was versatile, playing either at center or on the wing. He wasn't big but he played with great heart and passion. He was the kind of player who could energize his team or his home rink with a gutsy, inspiring shift. He would forecheck hard, perhaps lay out a surprisingly loud hit, or force a turnover and create a scoring chance. By keeping his feet always kept motoring, often drawing penalties.

Barnes could be used on either specialty team unit. He had a big shot for the power play, though he was better known on the PK where his anticipation skills really came in handy.

Handy. If there is one word that could sum up Stu Barnes as a hockey player I think handy would be a very apt fit.

Stu Barnes played in 1136 regular season NHL games, scoring 261 goals, 336 assists and 597 points. In 116 playoff games he scored 30 goals and 32 assists. He never won a Stanley Cup, but was a big part of both Florida's (1996) and Buffalo's (1999) march to the  Cup finals.


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