BY MIKE MCGLENISTER – FAN FUEL BLOGGER
Mats Sundin will be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame on Monday night, along with Joe Sakic, Pavel Bure and Adam Oates. Throughout his 13 seasons in Toronto, he had many great moments with the Maple Leafs.
Here is my list of the top 13 most memorable Mats Sundin moments.
Mats Sundin scores his 500th goal of his career against the Calgary Flames at home in the Air Canada Centre. The goal was scored on October 14, 2006, and it was his third goal of the night and his fourth point of the game. Sundin showed a flair for the dramatic while beating Miikka Kiprusoff in overtime.
2. OLYMPIC GOLD MEDAL
During the 2006 Winter Olympics, Mats Sundin won Olympic hockey gold with Sweden. He played like a champion and deserved to be one.
3. TRADE TO THE LEAFS
The Maple Leafs acquired their future captain on June 28, 1994 from the Quebec Nordiques. The Leafs sent Wendel Clark, Sylvain Lefebvre, Landon Wilson and a 1994 first round pick for Sundin, Garth Butcher, Todd Warriner and a 1994 first round pick. This trade signaled a changing of the guard in Toronto.
4. NAMED CAPTAIN
Sundin was named captain in 1997, and became the first European to wear the “C” for the Leafs. At the end of 2007-08 he was the longest serving non-North American captain in the NHL.
5. 2002 PLAYOFF RUN
Mats Sundin scores a late game playoff goal on May 28th 2002 versus the Carolina Hurricanes.
6. SIX POINT NIGHT
On April 11, 2006 with the Leafs fighting to stay in the playoff picture, Mats Sundin scored four goals and added two assists against the Florida Panthers. The Leafs won the game 6-5 in overtime.
7. ALL-TIME LEAFS LEADER IN GOALS
On October 4, 2007 against the Ottawa Senators, Sundin tied Darryl Sittler for the all-time team lead for goals with 389. Then one week later against the New York Islanders, Sundin scored his 390th goal in a Leafs uniform.
8. ALL-TIME LEAFS LEADER IN POINTS
On October 11, 2007 vs. the Islanders, Sundin recorded his 917th point as a Maple Leaf, breaking Darryl Sittler’s franchise all-time record.
9. 1,000th CAREER POINT
On March 10, 2003 versus the Edmonton Oilers, Sundin recorded his 1000th point with a game-winning goal in overtime. He became the first Swedish player to reach that milestone.
10. TRADE REFUSAL
In February of 2008, Mats Sundin refused to waive his no trade clause. This set off a fan and media frenzy, with some fans demanding the he be forced to give up his captaincy.
11. NO SUPPORT
For Sundin’s entire career with the Leafs he had little support. Night in and night out Sundin was on the ice with sub par players such as Jonas Hoglund, Fredik Modin and Steve Thomas. He still was able to match point totals of other top players around the league who had more complete line ups to play with.
12. RETURN TO TORONTO
In his emotional return to Toronto the fans gave him a standing ovation. Sundin scored the game-winning shootout goal for his new team the Vancouver Canucks to sink the Maple Leafs that night.
Everyday Sundin showed a great deal of leadership and class by being the face of the franchise. During his time with the Leafs he faced a lot of adversity and maintained his stoic poise.
What are your favourite moments from Sundin’s career?
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