Posted by: emmaharger | March 8, 2012

Man of the Day 3/8: Marty Turco

Marty Turco

Born August 13, 1975 (age 36) in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada

Goaltender for the Boston Bruins

Welcome to Boston, Turk. Can I call you that? Yesterday I posted a bunch of videos that might provide a little multifaceted insight into who this guy is, beyond the game records and save percentages and all of that. Let’s learn more. Turco forewent junior hockey, the traditional province of many young Canadian players, and instead played for the University of Michigan after being drafted by Dallas in 1994. He was lauded with awards during his time as a Wolverine and, upon graduation, went to play for Dallas’ affiliate at the time, the IHL level Michigan K-Wings. He spent two years as a K-Wing before getting called up (or down, geographically) to Texas to back up the Stars’ Ed Belfour. Another two-year stint saw him gaining experience as Belfour’s backup until he assumed the role of starter and Belfour went to Toronto.

"That one time, I poked my goal stick between Ryan Kesler's legs. Hey, he was screening me and I decided to do a man check." (not actual quote, but would be awesome if it were)

He impressed right away, setting an NHL record for lowest goals-against average in his first season, 1.72. (Miikka Kiprusoff broke that the next season, though.) His save percentage of .932 was the best in the NHL that year as well and he finished second in Vezina votes. He continued to do well in Texas, leading the Stars to quite a few playoff series (although no Cup wins) and visiting the All-Star Game .. times, including the time it was hosted in Dallas in 2007. 2009 saw him break a Stars record for games played by a goalie. Actually he broke three records that year: games played by a goalie, total minutes played and consecutive starts. But April 2010 saw him end his time with the Stars and head to Chicago.

As a Blackhawk, he did struggle a bit, eventually losing the starting gig to Corey Crawford (and maybe touching off some of the goaltending drama that Krista tells me is still rampant in Chicago), so this was when he became known more for his personality. On the bench, he did more than just open the door, sometimes at the wrong time to make an opposing player lose his balance; he also made friendly bets with fans and made fun of Pierre McGuire. Sounds good to me. After Chicago, he provided some TV analysis for NHL Network (something he said he might do after he hangs up the skates for good) and went to the Austrian leagues and got in on a deal that was originally supposed to last just two games, but was extended to the rest of the season. Then of course came the after-trade-deadline signing by the Bruins. One time, Don Cherry called him the smartest goalie in the NHL. Let’s see if he can bring those smarts to Boston!

Here is the first look at him practicing inside TD Garden.

-Emma


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