Wendel Clark enjoyed his time with Mats Sundin in Toronto.
The former Toronto Maple Leafs captain joined Jeff Marek and Ric Nattress on HOCKEY CENTRAL @ Noon on Sportsnet 590 The Fan on Wednesday to discuss his experiences playing with Sundin, who was selected on Tuesday to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
“Just a big horse of a player,” Clark said. “Could play game any way he wanted to play — whether it was skill level, the power level. He played as good as anyone could play up and down the ice.
“It probably showed when he played with lots of talents; he won the Gold medal and led that team. Came every day and was our best player in Toronto.”
Clark, who was traded for Sundin by the Quebec Nordiques in a blockbuster trade in 1995, ended up re-joining the Leafs in 1998 where he was able to play with Sundin for parts of four seasons.
He valued Sundin’s leadership style and how the Swedish superstar treated his teammates with the Leafs.
“Led by example — dealt with everything in a class way,” Clark explained. “He was always the team’s best player… He handled everything right — he was part of making you a better player. As good as he was a player, he was happier when (teammates) scored. Very much a team guy. He had all those qualities.”
Clark, who played under Pat Burns in Toronto, believes it’s a certainty that the three-time coach of the year will be eventually inducted to the Hockey Hall of Fame.
“His time will be coming, he explained. “ Don’t get too frustrated. Pat won coach of the year three times. Won the Stanley cup. Only a matter of time. Just think to the positive side. It’s coming and he definitely will be getting in there in time.”