LBC's All-Time Florida Panthers Roster Countdown: 108-106
Welcome back to another week of your Florida Panther's all-time roster countdown. For a brief explanation on how the players were ordered for this list, click here.
On Friday, we looked at Florida Panther alumni D Lance Pitlick (165 games, five goals, eight assists), C Kamil Kreps (232 games, 18 goals, 42 assists), and C Mike Sillinger (68 games, 17 goals, 25 assists). Today, we check out a Canadian goaltender and two defensemen, one from Minnesota and the other from North Vancouver.
If you're still with me, click to read on.
108. Kirk McLean
McLean was a 6' goaltender from Willowdale, Ontario. He was originally picked by the New Jersey Devils in the sixth round of the 1984 NHL Entry Draft, 107th overall. He compiled a 52-47-4 record with a 3.58 GAA in three seasons with the OHL Oshawa Generals. He joined the Devils near the end of the 1985-86 season, going 1-1-0 in his first look at professional hockey.
In 1986-87, McLean went 15-23-4 with the AHL's Maine Mariners. He again went 1-1-0 with the Devils in limited action with the team near the end of the season. He would not appear with the Devils again, nor would he ever again be demoted to the minors throughout his career. After the season, the Devils traded him to the Vancouver Canucks with Greg Adams and a second round pick for Patrik Sundstrom and second and fourth round picks.
For most of 11 seasons, McLean was Vancouver's number one or co-number one goaltender (see HOCKEY STYX, below, lol). He ranks first on the Canucks all-time list in games played in goal, with 516, and ranks second with 211 wins (behind only Roberto Luongo, small world). He appeared on the all-star team in 1990 and 1992, leading the NHL with 38 wins in 1991-92. He posted a 211-228-62 record and 20 shutouts, with an .887 save percentage and a 3.28 GAA. He also appeared in 68 playoff matches for the Canucks, posting a record the very definition of "average," at 34-34. On January 3, 1998, the Canucks sent him to the Carolina Hurricanes with Martin Gelinas for Sean Burke, Geoff Sanderson, and Enrico Ciccone.
Kirk McLean- Mr. Roboto (via undertakerpitt)
McLean only appeared with the Hurricanes for about two months (4-2-0, .878, 3.29) before getting traded again, to the Panthers for Ray Sheppard on March 24. He finished the season with Florida, posting a 4-2-1 record in seven games, with a 3.25 GAA and an .894 save percentage.
In 1998-99, McLean opened the season with the Panthers as the number two goaltender to fellow recent addition Sean Burke. He posted a shutout in his first start of the season, blanking the Nashville Predators, 1-0 on 26 shots October 10. After his shutout, McLean had a mostly substandard season, going 5-10-4 through April 10. He managed to close the season on a high note, winning the Panthers last three matches, including his second shutout of the campaign in a 2-0 win over the Ottawa Senators. He stopped 39 shots in the game. After the season, McLean signed on with the New York Rangers.
For New York, McLean posted a 15-18-5 record over two seasons, retiring following the 2000-01 season. He was hired as a goaltending coach by the WHL Kamloops Blazers, later broadcasting for the Canucks pay-per-view telecasts.
All-Time Statline: Two seasons, 37 games, 2,003 minutes, 13-12-5 record, 934 shots faced, 839 saves, 95 goals allowed, .898 save percentage, 2.85 GAA, 3.2 APS.
107. Sean Hill
Hill was a 6' defenseman from Duluth, Minnesota. He was picked by the Montreal Canadiens in the eighth round of the 1988 NHL Entry Draft with the 167th overall pick. In three seasons of collegiate hockey with the University of Wisconsin Badgers, he totalled 35 goals and 94 assists in 124 games.
In 1990-91, Hill made his pro debut with Montreal, playing in one playoff game against the Boston Bruins in a 2-1 loss. The following season he appeared exclusively with the AHL Fredericton Canadiens through the regular season, scoring seven goals and 20 assists in 42 games. He played in four contests with Montreal through the postseason, all losses to the Bruins. He split 1992-93 between Fredericton (six games, one goal, three assists) and the NHL Canadiens (31 games, two goals, six assists). He played in three postseason matches, helping the team to their first Stanley Cup since 1986. Left unprotected, the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim claimed Hill in the 1993 Expansion Draft.
Hill scored the Ducks first ever goal, in a 7-2 loss to the Detroit Red Wings on October 8. Through the season, he scored seven goals on 165 shots, dishing out 20 helpers and finishing with a minus-12 rating and 78 PIM. Later on, he would skate with the Ottawa Senators (143 games, nine goals, 29 assists, minus-33 rating, 134 PIM), the Carolina Hurricanes (158 games, 13 goals, 46 assists, plus-10 rating, 155 PIM), the St. Louis Blues (71 games, one goal, 13 assists, plus-6 rating, 79 PIM), and a second go-round with the Canes (211 games, 25 goals, 73 assists, plus-1 rating, 286 PIM). The Panthers signed him during the 2004 offseason.
After the 2004-05 non-season, Hill played the full 2005-06 season with Florida. He averaged 20:09 TOI per game, scoring two goals on 110 shots while assisting 18 others, posting a plus-3 rating and 80 PIM in 78 games. He signed as a free agent with the New York Islanders prior to the 2006-07 season.
Hill played in 81 games for the Islanders that season (one goal, 24 assists, plus-6, 110 PIM) before testing positive for performance enhancing drugs. The resultant 20 game suspension started in game five of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against the Buffalo Sabres, a game the Islanders lost. He signed with the Minnesota Wild the following season, starting out by serving the last 19 games of the suspension. He finished the season with two goals and seven assists in 35 contests. Hill played with the Swiss-A team, Biel, in 2008-09, scoring three goals and 17 assists in 47 games.
All-Time Statline: One season, 78 games, two goals, 18 assists, 20 points, plus-3 rating, 80 PIM, 3.3 APS.
106. Todd Simpson
Simpson was a 6'3" defenseman from North Vancouver, BC. After two WHL seasons between the Tri-City Americans and the Saskatoon Blades (132 games, 14 goals, 40 assists), he signed a free agent deal with the Calgary Flames prior to the 1994-95 NHL season. He played the entire season with the AHL Saint John Flames, and most of the next (146 games, seven goals, 23 assists). He started the 1995-96 season with Calgary, playing in six games through October before getting optioned back to the AHL.
Simpson appeared with Calgary for four seasons in total, collecting a grand total of four goals on 191 shots (2.1 S%), along with 26 assists, a minus-6 rating, and a robust 500 minutes in the penalty box. The Flames traded him to the Panthers for Bill Lindsay just before the 1999-00 season.
Simpson did not get in any fights for the Panthers...in February. He managed to get in 13 tussles otherwise, ending up leading the Cats in PIM with 202 (see video for awesome fight). His shooting percentage stayed steady on with his career numbers, as he scored one goal on 50 shots with six assists in 16:31 ATOI, finishing the season at plus-5. He played in all four of Florida's postseason matches, failing to score and racking up a minus-4 rating.
Shayne Corson vs Todd Simpson (via sabrz)
In 2000-01, Simpson started off the season on the Panthers roster, appearing in 20 games before losing three months to injury in December. After returning, he added five more games with the Panthers before getting traded on March 13 to the Phoenix Coyotes for a second round pick. For Florida, he scored one goal on 26 shots, adding three assists in 16:29 ATOI, an even rating, and 74 PIM.
After playing with the Coyotes (146 games, four goals, 21 assists, plus-23 rating, 299 PIM), Simpson split the 2003-04 season between the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim (46 games, four goals, three assists, minus-6 rating, 105 PIM) and the Ottawa Senators (16 games, one assist, minus-1 rating, 47 PIM). During the lockout, he would join the Danish team, Herning Blue Fox, with his brother, Kent as the team won the League Championship. He returned to the NHL in 2005-06 with the Chicago Blackhawks (45 games, three assists, minus-2 rating, 116 PIM) and the Montreal Canadiens (six games, even rating, 14 PIM). He joined the Hannover Scorpions in Germany in 2006-07 (45 games, one goal, nine assists), getting suspended late in the season for "abuse of an official." The New York Islanders tried to sign him during his suspension for a late season playoff push, but the NHL decided to uphold the German League suspension. Simpson never again played in the pros.
All-Time Statline: Two seasons, 107 games, two goals, nine assists, 11 points, plus-5 rating, 276 PIM, 3.3 APS.
That's it for today's entry. Thanks for joining us, and make sure to leave comments below. Come back tomorrow for the next three players in the countdown, all defensemen. One from Minnesota, one from Saskatchewan, and one Swede.