The news was completely expected. Curtis Joseph hadn’t played a game all season. His last game, an April 9, 2009 loss to Buffalo in Toronto, his second stint with the Maple Leafs. He had himself a very long (19 seasons) and storied career that started during the 1989-90 season. He would go on to win 454 games (4th all-time to only Brodeur, Roy, and Belfour) and 352 losses (2nd to only Gump Worlsey).
Joseph may not have been one of the elite goaltenders during his time in the league. As evidence by the lack of Vezina Trophies. However, consider how many great goaltenders played during his tenure (Roy, Brodeur, Belfour, and Hasek). In a recent poll of NHL fans 66% felt that his career was good enough to gain entrance into the Hall of Fame. Although he deserves merit for his accomplishments, his popularity is eventually going to get him in if he does indeed get into the Hall.
He was considered a fan favorite no matter where he played. He was considered a great teammate and got involved with the community off the ice. Every time he was moved to another team, the fans from the previous team would always be mad at management. He won nearly everywhere he played. Along with the 454 games won, he had a GAA of 2.45 and a career save percentage of 91.7%.
Some interesting stories about CuJo:
- After the 1990 – 91 season the Blues signed Brandon Shanahan from the Devils. They offered Rod Brind’Amour, Curtis Joseph and 2 draft picks as compensation. The Devils wanted Scott Stevens and eventually won that right in court. If Joseph would have gone to the Devils, he would have been Brodeur’s backup.
- His real name was Curtis Munro, but he changed it to his adopted parent’s surname after being picked up by the Blues.
- He was signed as an undrafted free agent.
- He is the only goaltender to win a post-season game with five different teams.
As far as his autographed cards on eBay, they could be had for between $2 – $8. Some of his fancier cards can be had for $10 – $20. The card posted below was the lowest numbered multi item card I could find on eBay. It’s final price was $27. His cards may never appreciate in value like Brodeur’s or Roy’s but to a die hard puckhead, his cards are a must to own.