Could Joe Thornton Win The Hart This Season?

I have been a close follower of the San Jose Sharks in season 2005-2006, a campaign many would call ‘A Tale of Two Seasons.’ The monumental trade that saw Joe Thornton arrive in San Jose has certainly changed the fortunes of the Sharks, who after 7 games with the big number 19, only lost for the first time yesterday in a close match to the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim.

Joe Thornton has brought so much to the Sharks, and whilst the team is greatly benefiting from having him on board, there’s no doubt that he too, is faring better after a change of scenery from his former pressure-cooker situation in Boston.Joe Thornton is currently second in the league in scoring, with 48 points, only 3 behind Jaromir Jagr, at whom he is now scoring at a much more rapid pace. Thornton also leads the league in assists, with 36. In his 7 games at San Jose, he has now scored 15 points, more than 2 per game, frequently on a line with players such as his cousin Scott, as well as Patrick Marleau and Jonathan Cheechoo. Thornton has increased the scoring rate of all of these players and more on the team, and has ensured the playoffs are not the distant hope for San Jose that they seemed to be in a horrible November.

So whilst it is possible that Thornton may win the Art Ross trophy, the bigger question, is can he win the Hart (or even Pearson) trophy, for the league’s most valuable player? Sure he can technically, anybody can. But I ask this question in regard to Thornton because here is one of the league’s best players, who has changed team’s midseason. He’s brought SO MUCH to his new team, taking them from 10 straight losses, to 6 straight victories today, and has been in the very least, the main inspiration behind these victories.

There are a number of Hart contenders this year. Eric Staal has carried Carolina on his back, Jaromir Jagr has been the face of the New York Rangers, Daniel Alfredsson has led by example in Ottawa and more. But none of these guys have changed teams. Thornton in many people’s opinions may not have been the best player this season so far, and even with his 2 plus points per game so far in San Jose, he may not have even been the best in the last 7 games or so. But he’s up there.

The question is: Has he been the most valuable player to his team? By definition alone, Thornton doesn’t even qualify for the Hart, as he has had more than one team to play for this season. Hart trophy calibre players rarely get traded to another team, especially mid-season, and when they do, it’s because they’re slumping. Thornton though, has been in his prime, he was performing well on a dismal Bruins team and has performed even better on the Sharks, being their most valuable player during his time there.

I don’t think the Hart trophy has ever gone to a player who has played on two different teams in the season in which he won it. Joe Thornton winning this season would challenge the very logic behind the trophy, but it would be a landmark achievement for a player no longer wanted by the Boston Bruins management.

Could a player moved mid-season be the most valuable to his team? Possibly. And if Joe Thornton keeps going the way he is right now, and the Sharks turn their season around and make the playoffs and contend, we may have to re-address this hypothetical situation again in the near future.

29 Responses to Could Joe Thornton Win The Hart This Season?

  1. paul_dc10 says:

    i think you right he will

  2. toronto77 says:

    i dun know about thornton winning the hart….he could.

    but as far as the sharks winning streak goes, i think it will die soon, every time a team makes a good trade, they are hot at first than shit, but maybe not.

    I think the sharks were really, really smart tryn to go for thornton way before the trade deadline because i don’t know if anyone has noticed but, most of the time a team trades for a guy at the trade deadline, he plays good for the rest of the season and plays like shit in the playoffs or not as great.for ex. toronto with nolan(2003),toronto with leetch(2004),ottawa with bondra(2004),boston with gonchar(2004) etc…

    but this way thornton has a whole season with the sharks to experience hot and cold streaks with them, and maybe he will be awesome in the playoffs.

  3. hockeyhead says:

    great goobledie god….

    i hope joe does win it to show the fans of boston what a fake he was for all his tenure for the bruins with the exception of when mike keenan coached.

    thanks for the cheated memmories joe.

    signed, p!$$ed off bruin fan.

  4. tml28 says:

    BELFOUR MUst Be TRAded

  5. 24_cups_and_counting says:

    Why? Is allowing 14 goals in the past 2 games not concidered good?

  6. skatefast says:

    The Sharks will have to finish in the playoffs and go fairley deep for Joe to be considered.

  7. habsoverserver says:

    I think you meant Good Goobly Goo, right Grady?

  8. habsoverserver says:

    Thornton was a floater for the Bruins. So, even if he won the scoring title, he wasn’t going to win the Hart as a Bruin. As a Shark, he is on a scoring streak. He has not sustained, MVP type performance for the entire season. The leading candidates at this point would include Forsberg, Alfredsson and Jagr.

    These awards are often won in the final weeks of the season. I’m not willing to count anyone out yet.

  9. 19AVSFANFoLIFE19 says:

    no you have to have 20 goals in 2 games to be considered good. get it right. besides i think the best they will get for belfour is a vintage jersey of brad may lol.

  10. SabresFan220 says:

    He has a legitimate chance at being nominated for the Hart trophy to say the least if the Sharks make the playoffs. Winning it over Heatley or Alfredsson is a questionable thing though. Keep in mind your winning streak was broken by the Ducks, at least it wasn’t Pittsburgh or Washington huh.

  11. hockeyhead says:

    LOL….it just came to my head but i did watch sanford and son when i was younger.

    must of been from the subconscience.

    joe is still a fraud.

  12. LeafyMcLeaf says:

    Hey Ross, been a while since you posted here,

    I think Thornton deserves it, he’s been the best player in the league. My opinion is that Sakic abd Thornton are the best in the league, and Thorntons having the better season.

  13. LeafyMcLeaf says:

    By the way, Jagr has played a few more games then Thornton, and Thornton is more then a point per game player, so he will pass him.

  14. Hockey_Fan_99 says:

    Thornton was also DTD near the beginning of the season………………………..

  15. paul_dc10 says:

    yeah both of those players are great, but i dont know why you wouldnt include iginla

  16. Kraut182 says:

    Could he win the Hart? Yes, but he would have to finish so far and above everybody else it would be ridiculous. He’d have to dominate the scoring race and probably help the Sharks win the division, otherwise I don’t think you can discount what happened in Boston.

    When you’re a teams franchise player, and they have to move you because the team is underachieving (not that I think it was all his fault, or even much his fault) that’s a big negative working against you in the Hart.

  17. FoppaFlyers21 says:

    I agree with your picks…. so far at least.

  18. FoppaFlyers21 says:

    as long as Forsberg stays healthy he’ll pass them both….. he led the league the whole season before he missed a week

  19. JannettyTheRocker says:

    Although Joe Thornton is in the runnings, I think his hot-streak will stop……….I’d pick one of the Senator’s top three to win the heart………….Alfredsson, Spezza, or Heatley. How could you not pick one of them?

  20. JannettyTheRocker says:

    I’m dense today, forgive me…………I know I know, it’s the Hart Trophy. Don’t know what came over me.

  21. SabresFan220 says:

    You know, typo aside, there really isn’t much difference. Wouldn’t most people agree that the player who displays the most heart, leadership, and determination on the ice is the league MVP? Numbers don’t always win it for you, sometimes it’s the guy with the most intangibles who wins.

  22. JannettyTheRocker says:

    Very true. That’s a good way to look at it………I still like one of the Senators for the Hart. But yeah, a guy like Joe Thornton could still win it.

  23. Hockey_Fan_99 says:

    too bad forsberg staying healthey is as likely as jesus coming to my house for dinner

  24. Nothingman says:

    The point of this article wasn’t me trying to say I think Joe Thornton should win the Hart.

    It was more about the idea that a two-team player could or whether he couldn’t.

  25. Deadman says:

    Its possible, but right now I like Jagr. Unfortunately for Ottawa fans I think that Alfredson is surrounded by too much talent, he is not the kind of stand out on his team that Jagr or Thornton are, but in conselation you will probably win the cup, so you win some you lose some.

  26. tml28 says:

    HAHAHAHA LOL FAG not funny Avs Fan.

    Actually they could get more for him.

  27. FoppaFlyers21 says:

    Jesus is at your house as you speak child. hahahaha. But yes let’s just hope he does stay healthy instead of assuming the worst. Check the PPG stat at…. Forsberg holds the #1 spot.

  28. Deke says:

    Good observation….Keenan was the best thing to ever happen to Thorton.

    He admits it himself.

  29. cecilturtle says:

    Hell, If the Tinman can get a heart at the end of the wiz of oz… Why cant Thornton grow one before the end of the season?

    Cecil Turtle

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