Burton 40: Robert Rogers
Dustin Blair was godlike, but only skated 14 games spread over three years. Dustin Marchischuk should have wiped out the record book, but never had the desire to. Pat Elischer, now he comes pretty close. But there is no one - not one person - who has been able to dethrone Robert Rogers as the most consistently awesome force in the history of Burton Hockey.
Robert Rogers completely laid waste to the Burton Hockey record book during his two-season-plus-a-session stay in Burton, combining stifling defence with overwhelming speed, strength, and offensive flair. His per-game totals aren't just good, they're stultifying: 2.24 GPG (best ever), 3.65 PPG (best ever), 29.22% shooting (best ever until that Barlow guy came around). All of this as a 16-and-17-year-old, to boot.
It was Robert who played his first session as a 15-year-old, went in goal, posted a best-ever-at-the-time .917, and never went back. He stayed on skates for the next two years, and immediately asserted himself as the most dominant force in Burton. In 2003, he never had less than 26 points in a single session, and did the unthinkable by posting 40 points in a single session, a mark that took six years to beat. The next season was even better, as he averaged 3.70 PPG and posted a session of 36 points in just eight games. The only session he didn't win was one where he could barely move from the flu (and still finished second). In only 89 career games, Robert finished with an unbelievable 325 points and led ten of the twelve sessions he skated in (finishing second in the other two).
Robert was solid muscle (the proto-de Wit of ridiculously insane workout regimens); a brick s*ithouse on wheels, impossible to contain because he could do whatever he wanted whenever he wanted on the rink. A humble, shy player, it's not as if he was going out there on purpose to put up stupid points (in the KIJHL and later the Powell River Kings of the BCHL, he was a stay-at-home defenceman). These were 'he can't help it because he's just too damn good points'. To go with his physical gifts and hockey prowess, he was also insanely intelligent both on and off the ice. Perhaps that's why he didn't need satisfaction from hockey. Robert, unfortunately for us, left for Edmonton in 2005 when he quit hockey at the ripe old age of 18 to start his own business. Being Robert, of course, he worked his ass off and he's been wildly successful at it the entire time. A freight train in the night, no one has dominated Burton Hockey like Robert Rogers, one of the Burton 40.
Awards: Goaltending Champion - 2002; Most Outstanding Player - 2003, 2004; 1st All-Star - 2003, 2004.
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Ben de Wit