APPRECIATING JOE THORNTON
2023-11-01 · 2 min read · NHL/Hockey
Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports | Brandon Magnus/NHLI | Sporting News
Legendary playmaker “Jumbo” Joe Thornton announced his retirement in his classic style.
I wanted to take a minute to look back on his amazing career, as Thornton is one of the greatest players of his generation. He amassed 430 goals and 1,539 points in a 24-year career, primarily spent with the Boston Bruins and San Jose Sharks. He also had short stints with the Toronto Maple Leafs and Florida Panthers at the end of his illustrious career. The 44-year-old last played during the 2021-22 campaign as a member of the Florida Panthers. Thornton appeared in 1,714 NHL games in a career that began with the Boston Bruins in 1997, leaving him sixth in all time games played.
On the international stage, Thornton played for Canada at the World Junior Hockey Championship in 1997 (winning gold), the 2004 World Cup, the 2006 Winter Olympics and the 2010 Winter Games (winning gold again). Thornton also played pro hockey in Switzerland for HC Davos and participated twice in the Spengler Cup and once in the Swiss Cup. Overall Jumbo Joe leaves the game 12th in points, and 7th in assists, while being the only player to ever win the Art Ross and Hart Memorial trophies while switching teams during the season. He also has the highest point total recorded by a player who switched teams during the season (125). Thornton is easily one of the all-time great San Jose Sharks; standing as their all-time leader in assists (745), +/- (+172) and points per game (1.01). Fun fact he also has the most games played by a 1st overall pick (1,714)
When I first started watching hockey like many I quickly gravitated to a few stars, one of them was a young Joe Thornton (who I'll admit I liked a lot more once he left Boston). I will always have fond memories of him from watching him play on TV to seeing him play in and later for Toronto, even racking up filthy numbers with him in Chel franchise mode. Likely due to the above, I just want to end this piece by saying thank you to a legend and good luck in whatever you do next.
By: Chase Howard