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NHL Sibling Rivalry: Comparing the Staal Brothers and the Sedin Twins

Alison MyersCorrespondent IDecember 8, 2016

NHL Sibling Rivalry: Comparing the Staal Brothers and the Sedin Twins

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    Over the years, many sets of brothers have left their mark on the NHL.

    The Niedermayers. The Sutters. The Bures.

    In this generation of NHL players, the league has two dynamic sets of brothers who are valuable contributors to their teams.

    Of course, those siblings are Daniel and Henrik Sedin of the Vancouver Canucks and Jordan, Eric, and Marc Staal of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Carolina Hurricanes, and New York Rangers.

    This slideshow will compare the Staals and the Sedins in terms of many NHL categories used to measure player accomplishments.

    To write this piece, I considered both individual and combined measurements of each player's NHL performances.

    Regardless of who I think or you think is better, I still respect what both sets of brothers have done in the league and will continue to do so.

NHL Experience

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    Sedins:

    Henrik and Daniel have been members of the Vancouver Canucks for nine seasons. They both made their debuts in the 2000-2001 season.

    Staals:

    Jordan, Eric, and Marc have a combined 13 seasons of NHL experience. All of them have played with one team during their careers.

    Eric has the most experience, having just finished his sixth season with the Carolina Hurricanes.

    Jordan is not far behind; he has played four seasons with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

    Marc, currently the youngest of the Staals in the NHL, has played three seasons with the New York Rangers.

    Advantage:

    Sedins. Although the Staals combine for more experience than either Sedin twin, neither is about to hit the decade mark of their careers.

Leadership

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    Sedins:

    Henrik is currently an alternate captain of the Canucks. This was his first season in the position. He was given the "A" after former alternate captain Mattias Ohlund signed with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

    Staals:

    This past season, Eric was appointed the captain of the Carolina Hurricanes and replaced long term Hurricanes captain Rod Brind'Amour.

    Jordan held an alternate captaincy with the Penguins in December 2008 when former coach Michel Therrien was rotating between alternate captains every month.

    He also wore an "A" when Sergei Gonchar missed time due to illness this past year.

    Advantage:

    The Staals. This was a tough one to call, but Eric was an alternate captain for the Hurricanes before assuming the captaincy this past January.

    Further, with Brind'Amour retiring, Eric is poised to become the new face of the Canes franchise. 

    Jordan is also establishing himself as one of the Penguins' leaders, and Therrien's and Dan Bylsma's willingness to allow him to take over an alternate captaincy, even on a temporary basis, proves that.

Offense

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    Sedins:

    Daniel and Henrik have each put up more than 80 points in three out of their 10 seasons in Vancouver. They also accomplished the feat in the same seasons, doing so in 2006-2007, 2008-2009, and 2009-2010. 

    Henrik had his first 100-point season this year, scoring 112 points to lead the NHL.

    Daniel averages 55 points a season and has 547 career points, while Henrik averages 57 points a year and has 572 career points.

    Together, they have 1,119 career points and average 56 points a season.

    Staals:

    Jordan has put up more than 40 points in three out of his four seasons with Pittsburgh (2006-2007, 2008-2009, and 2009-2010). He currently has 168 career points and averages 42 points a year.

    Eric has scored more than 70 points in five out of his six NHL seasons. He scored an even 100 points during the Canes' Stanley Cup season in 2005-2006. His total currently sits at 428 career points, which averages out to 71 points a year.

    Marc has 52 points in three seasons, a 17 points per season average. He just completed the best season of his short career, where he had 27 points in 82 games.

    The Staals have a combined career point total of 648 career points, a 217 points per season average.

    Advantage:

    I'm going to call this one even. At first, I wanted to give the edge to the Swedish twins, but five seasons of more than 70 points scored is nothing to sneeze at.

    Jordan is also establishing himself as a consistent scorer as he gains more experience.

    Furthermore, it wouldn't be fair to give the advantage to one set of brothers when at least one sibling has put up a 100-point season.

Defense

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    Sedins:

    Henrik has a plus-132 rating over his career, and Daniel is not far behind with a plus-116 rating.

    That is a combined plus-248 rating and a plus-13 season average. Both have had positive ratings in eight of nine seasons. 

    This past season, Henrik's plus-35 was eighth in the NHL, while Daniel's plus-36 ranked fifth.

    Staals:

    Jordan, Marc, and Eric come in with a plus-38 combined rating. Jordan is the leader of the pack with a plus-35 career rating. That is a plus-three average per season for all three brothers.

    However, Eric struggles on the defensive end and has had a positive plus/minus rating in just two of his six professional seasons. Jordan and Marc have had positive ratings in all but one of their NHL seasons.

    Advantage:

    The Sedins. Not only do they have better numbers, they have also hit the mark more consistently during their careers.

    This would've been even, but Eric's defensive weaknesses set the Staals back a step.

Playoffs

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    Sedins:

    Henrik and Daniel each have more than 40 points in their postseason careers. Daniel has 42 points, which averages to six points per playoff run. Meanwhile, Henrik has 44 points, an average of 6.3 points per postseason.

    However, the Canucks have mostly stumbled in the postseason during their careers. Since the Sedins joined the NHL, the Canucks have not gotten further than the Western Conference Semifinals, including two straight eliminations at the hands of the Chicago Blackhawks.

    Vancouver has gone to the playoffs seven times from 2000 through the end of the past season.

    Staals:

    Eric was the first Staal brother to win a Stanley Cup when Carolina won their first title in franchise history in 2006. The Hurricanes also went to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2009, but were eliminated by Jordan's Penguins.

    Eric boasts a combined 43 points for his postseason participation, an average of 21 points per playoff run.

    Jordan went to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2008 and 2009 and captured the Cup with the Penguins in 2009. Since he joined the team in the 2006-2007 season, the Penguins have been to the playoffs every year.

    Aside from their trips to the Finals, the Penguins were swept by the Ottawa Senators in the first round of the 2007 playoffs and were eliminated by the Montreal Canadiens in seven games in the 2010 Eastern Conference Semifinals.

    Jordan has 24 playoff points for his career.

    Marc has been to the playoffs with the Rangers in two of his three NHL seasons. In 2008, his team was eliminated by the Penguins, and he was part of a team embarrassment in 2009 when the Washington Capitals came back from a 3-1 series deficit to eliminate the Rangers in seven games.

    He has four playoff points for his career.

    Advantage:

    The Staals. The Canucks' consistent playoff appearances can't really hold a candle to two Stanley Cups in the Staal family.

Awards

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    Sedins:

    Daniel was the Vancouver Canucks leading scorer in the 2007 and 2009 seasons. As a result, he was awarded the Cyrus H. McLean Trophy, a Canucks team award given to the leading point scorer.

    He was also a part of the 2006 Swedish Olympic team that won a gold medal in Turin.

    Henrik was also a part of the 2006 Sweden Olympic team. He has won three straight McLean trophies (2008, 2009, and 2010). He was also named the team MVP in 2010 and was awarded the Cyclone Taylor Trophy, another Canucks team award.

    This year, Henrik captured his first Art Ross and Hart Memorial Trophies.

    Staals:

    Aside from their two Stanley Cups, the Staals have had success in other award categories.

    Jordan was named the Penguins Rookie of the Year in 2007, a title he shared with Evgeni Malkin. He was also nominated for the Calder Memorial Trophy in 2007 (lost to Malkin) and the Selke Trophy in 2010 (lost to Pavel Datsyuk).

    Eric is a three time NHL All-Star and has participated in the 2007, 2008, and 2009 events. In the 2008 All-Star Game, he was named the game's MVP after scoring three points in the game.

    Eric was also a part of the 2010 Canadian Olympic team that defeated the USA team in one of the best gold medal games of all-time. He is now a member of the NHL's Triple Gold Club, which is reserved for players that have won a World Championship gold medal, an Olympic gold medal, and a Stanley Cup.

    Advantage:

    This is another even category because I feel it is too hard to place a gold medal over a Stanley Cup, and vice versa. NHL players themselves are often honored to win one or the other, let alone both.

    What should take precedence? The Staals and their two Stanley Cups? The Sedins and their two gold medals?

    I am interested in seeing the discussion on this slide.


Records

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    Sedins:

    Henrik is the current Canucks record holder for all-time assists with 434.

    He also holds the team record for assists in a season with 83. He actually broke his own record of 71 assists that he set back in 2006-2007. This year, his 112 point season set a new Canucks record for points in a season. He passed Pavel Bure's 110 points in 1993-1994.

    Staals:

    Jordan is the youngest player to score two shorthanded goals, accomplishing the feat in an October 2006 game against the Columbus Blue Jackets when he was 18 years and 41 days old. That same game, he also became the youngest player to score on a penalty shot.

    He also holds a record for most shorthanded goals by a rookie, scoring seven during the 2006-2007 season.

    Eric set a Hurricanes franchise record for the most hat tricks in a season when he had four hat tricks during the 2008-2009 season.

    He also has the team record for career postseason points after putting up 43 points during his two playoff runs with Carolina.

    Advantage:

    The Sedins. The Staals may have more records, but Henrik broke one of his own records and passed one of the greatest NHL players in history to get another one.

Is One Better Than the Other?

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    For me, there is no clear cut answer on whether the Staals or the Sedins are the better of these two sets of brothers in today's NHL.

    Both have achieved a lot. From Stanley Cups to Olympic gold medals to valuable team contributors, I would hate to discredit one set of accomplishments. There just isn't a need to, in my opinion.

    Of course, if I had to pick who I'd want at a party, I'd take the Swedish twins. I mean...they can dance!

    And they probably won't get arrested for having a little TOO much fun (although I do forgive Jordan and Eric for their slip up).

    But since this slideshow isn't about deciding which set of brothers can have more fun, I think we need to get ourselves back on track.

    Do you think that the Staals or the Sedins are better than one or the other? Or would you call it even?

    Drop me a line in the comments and let me know what you think.

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