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Oates, Stastny Among Top Playmakers

by Chris Pinkert / St. Louis Blues

Former Blues forwards Adam Oates and Peter Stastny made a recent list ranking some of the greatest playmakers in the history of the League.

Oates ranked No. 3, while Stastny earned the No. 9 spot.

Here's what had to say about Oates:

"If you were a goal-scorer, Oates was the guy you wanted on your line. Though he was never drafted and didn't begin his NHL career until age 23, Oates became one of the most prolific passers in NHL history -- his assist total in the 1990s was second only to Wayne Gretzky.

He led the League in assists three times and was in the top 10 on 12 occasions. Oates is also the only player in NHL history to center for three 50-goal scorers. He was the principal setup man for Brett Hull in St. Louis, Cam Neely in Boston and Peter Bondra in Washington. Oates had 79 or more assists in five consecutive seasons from 1989-90 to '93-94, then let the NHL in assists in 2000-01 and repeated in '01-02 -- at the age of 39.

His prolific passing skills (1,079 career assists) earned Oates a berth in the Hockey Hall of Fame -- he will be inducted this fall."

Oates scored 58 goals and assisted on another 228 in just three seasons with the Blues from 1989-1992. In an NHL career that spanned 1,337 games, Oates had 341 goals and 1,079 assists (1,420 points). He will be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame this fall.

Here's what said about Stastny:

"The most prolific of the three Stastny brothers to play in the NHL didn't arrive in North America until 1980, when he defected from Czechoslovakia at age 24 and joined the Quebec Nordiques. He wasted no time making an impact, becoming the first rookie in NHL history to record 70 assists in a season, then boosted that number to 93 in 1981-82 on the way to a 139-point season.

Stastny averaged more than 77 assists in his first six seasons and finished his career with 789 in only 977 games -- his average of .808 assists per game is fifth among the top 100 on the all-time list."

Stastny's career with the Blues was short-lived. He played in 23 games, recording 6 goals and 12 assists. Over his 977-game NHL career, he scored 450 goals and 789 assists (1,239 points).

Other playmakers on the list include Gretzky, Bobby Orr, Mario Lemieux and Sidney Crosby.

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