Blackhawks: Who was better, Marian Hossa or Patrick Sharp?
By Benjamin Otero
The argument of if Patrick Sharp should be a Hall of Famer came up recently and that begs the question, who was the better player on the Chicago Blackhawks, Marian Hossa or Patrick Sharp?
Marian Hossa, formerly of the Chicago Blackhawks, was recently inducted into the NHL Hall of Fame. That has brought back a nostalgic feeling of Stanley Cup success coursing through the veins of every Blackhawks fan. That has also brought back the debate and question of whether Patrick Sharp is Hall of Fame worthy or not.
We can start with the recent Hall of Famer in Hossa. Marian Hossa in his career won three Stanley Cup finals with the Blackhawks, made it to five All-Star games, and had a second All-Star Team selection in 2009. He also made the All-Rookie Team in 1999.
Hossa’s best years were not with Chicago, he only appeared in one All-Star game, had only one season over 70 points with the club. However, in eight seasons he was a solid option for the Blackhawks and was a veteran presence on a young team.
Hossa’s limelight came in the 10 full seasons he played before donning the Blackhawks uniform. Those seasons were spent mainly in Ottawa with the Senators, a couple of years with the Atlanta Thrashers, with quick stops at Pittsburgh and Detroit.
In that time he had one season with 100 points, five with over 70 points, and several 30 goal campaigns. His +/- also stayed consistently high on the plus side as well.
When Hossa retired in 2017, he left a legacy in multiple city’s that will be there forever. A consistent player with great team relationships is always valued, but Hossa was also Elite while doing it.
But was he better than Patrick Sharp?
Patrick Sharp was a three-time cup champion, a one-time All-Star, and an All-Star Game MVP. He does not have nearly as many goals, assists, or many other areas of the game as Hossa, but that doesn’t mean he is a worse player.
Sharp played 15 seasons in the league, but only had 11 mostly full seasons with the rest of those being injury-ridden and shorter because of his age. He started with the Philadelphia Flyers for two and a half years, the Blackhawks for nine and a half, Dallas Stars for two years, and then one last season for Chicago.
Patrick Sharp only had one year over 70 points and it was in 2011, he followed that with an impressive +28 the next year. Sharp’s heyday was shorter than Hossa’s but he did occur during his time with the Blackhawks.
Sharp’s success with the Blackhawks was mainly in the postseason, with his best campaign coming in 2010 where he scored 11 goals and had 11 assists en route to a Stanley Cup. He followed that up with 10 goals in 2013 and 15 points in 2015.
These numbers eclipse Hossa’s in almost every year. Hossa’s stats are still good and he came up clutch a lot for the team but they were no match for Sharps.
The postseason is not long and never willfully show how good career is, but the Blackhawks were made on these championship runs. The legacy of the Blackhawks in the 2010s never was the one guy dominating, but rather the team stepping up when it counted.
That was Sharp, Sharp was the guy who stepped up when they needed a guy to be a superstar. That’s why I believe Sharp is the better Blackhawk and Hossa is the better player overall.
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Hossa had a Hall of Fame career and Sharp had a Blackhawks legend type of career. Whether he gets that Hall of Fame nod or not is still up for debate, but for Blackhawks fans, Sharp will always hold a close place in our hearts, as the superstar we needed in the playoffs.