303 QUICK POLL: Should Sullivan and Kariya have their numbers retired?
- Updated: June 29, 2011
When it was announced on Monday that Steve Sullivan would not be returning to the Nashville Predators next season, many asked how the Preds would honor him and his time served. And today when former Nashville winger Paul Kariya announced his retirement, fans started speculating on whether he deserved to have his number retired.
Sullivan was the first star to make his home Nashville, Tennessee. Kariya, however, was the first star that chose to make his home Nashville, Tennessee. Both were fan favorites in their time and both legitamized the Predators organization to the hockey world in one form or another.
Sullivan donned a Nashville sweater during six seasons, amassing 263 points in 317 games. He also brought some postseason hardware to Music City for the first time ever when he won the Masterton Award in 2009. Kariya wore his famous number nine for only two years in Nashville but in those two years he was an offensive star like nobody in Nashville before him. Or since, for that matter. He collected 161 points in 164 games. And, in the playoffs for the Preds, he registered nine points in ten contests.
Watching both men, at times, was like watching a highlight reel. In Sullivan’s case, he was showing off his moves even on his last goal as a member of the Predators.
Kariya, on the other hand, delivered what Peter Forbserg would later call “the best pass I’ve ever seen” in a February 2007 game against the Detroit Red Wings.
So which player deserves to have their number retired by the Predators? Either? Both? Was Sullivan consistent enough to warrant such an honor? Is Kariya’s two-year stint not long enough for the accolades?
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