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-   -   Selänne vs Francis (http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/showthread.php?t=808278)

unknown33 08-10-2010 03:14 PM

Selänne vs Francis
 
As Selänne won the poll against Modano in a landslide let's see how he fares against Francis.

Who is/will be higher on your all time list?

Big Phil 08-10-2010 03:44 PM

It's pretty even. I could support both sides. The thing with Francis is that he's a big exception because you have to take into account just how long the man played and that he was (save for 2-3 seasons) always good, very good or very, very close to elite. When you span that long as a very good player it is harder to judge. I take Francis over Modano for sure, but Selanne does beat Francis in peak value which we also have to consider. I'll come back to this one in a bit.

vulture77 08-10-2010 04:15 PM

Selanne has bit more elite seasons and better peak, but Francis has substantially better career, although he wasn't the top guy for the most of his career.

Got to lean towards Francis here overall, but it's close. 500+ goals and as many assists as Selanne has points is simply too much to ignore.

Ziostilon 08-10-2010 08:14 PM

Selanne is no slouch in terms of longevity.

i think playoff success should play into this debate

Hardyvan123 08-11-2010 12:23 AM

I'm with the Franics crowd here he played at a near elite, elite 2 way level for such a long time. he gets under rated IMO because of his relatively low peak among all time greats. He has only 4 seasons of more than 100 points (adjusted) with 124, 115, 108 and 101.

But overall he has another 16 seasons with more than 64 points along with excellent defensive skills.

Endurance has to count for something just ask the ladies.

tony d 08-11-2010 07:43 AM

Francis but it's thisclose

BraveCanadian 08-11-2010 07:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 (Post 27330703)
I'm with the Franics crowd here he played at a near elite, elite 2 way level for such a long time. he gets under rated IMO because of his relatively low peak among all time greats. He has only 4 seasons of more than 100 points (adjusted) with 124, 115, 108 and 101.

But overall he has another 16 seasons with more than 64 points along with excellent defensive skills.

Endurance has to count for something just ask the ladies.

It is easily Francis for me. 3-100 point seasons and 12 more seasons of 75 points or more along with his 2 way play are pretty overwhelming.

Selanne peaks higher offensively but hasn't come close to the sustained high level play of Francis.

jkrx 08-11-2010 08:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BraveCanadian (Post 27332494)
It is easily Francis for me. 3-100 point seasons and 12 more seasons of 75 points or more along with his 2 way play are pretty overwhelming.

Selanne peaks higher offensively but hasn't come close to the sustained high level play of Francis.

Funny how you in one thread discredit Forsberg for playing behind Sakic in Colorado yet still think Francis wins this easily when playing behind Lemieux and had Jagr as a linemate.

BraveCanadian 08-11-2010 08:52 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jkrx (Post 27332873)
Funny how you in one thread discredit Forsberg for playing behind Sakic in Colorado yet still think Francis wins this easily when playing behind Lemieux and had Jagr as a linemate.

Funny how you didn't realize that Francis was also great on a very poor Hartford team for 8 out of the 9 years in his career before he played with either one of Lemieux or Jagr..

They don't call him Ronnie Franchise for nothing.

jkrx 08-11-2010 04:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BraveCanadian (Post 27332897)
Funny how you didn't realize that Francis was also great on a very poor Hartford team for 8 out of the 9 years in his career before he played with either one of Lemieux or Jagr..

They don't call him Ronnie Franchise for nothing.

Yet the only time he has been a top 5 player in the league is on the Penguins. Selänne didn't exactly play for the hotest teams in the league either. Jets and Mighty Ducks. Im not saying Selänne is better than Francis though but Francis is definitly not easily better.

ushvinder 08-11-2010 05:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jkrx (Post 27339987)
Yet the only time he has been a top 5 player in the league is on the Penguins. Selänne didn't exactly play for the hotest teams in the league either. Jets and Mighty Ducks. Im not saying Selänne is better than Francis though but Francis is definitly not easily better.

Francis had some pretty good seasons in 87, 90 and 2002 without the penguins. Selanne had the better peak, francis had a better career.

TheDevilMadeMe 08-11-2010 06:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jkrx (Post 27339987)
Yet the only time he has been a top 5 player in the league is on the Penguins. Selänne didn't exactly play for the hotest teams in the league either. Jets and Mighty Ducks. Im not saying Selänne is better than Francis though but Francis is definitly not easily better.

Even when Francis was top 5 in scoring on the Penguins, everyone knew he wasn't a top 5 player. He got nil for Hart votes and was not a post-season All Star.

Francis's highest finish in the scoring race without Jagr as his regular linemate was 9th in 2002, a historically weak year for forwards. That's the only season Francis received multiple Hart votes too (finishing 6th).

I originally voted Selanne, but I might vote "even" if I thought about it more.

TheDevilMadeMe 08-11-2010 06:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ushvinder (Post 27341180)
Francis had some pretty good seasons in 87, 90 and 2002 without the penguins. Selanne had the better peak, francis had a better career.

11th, 12th, and 9th in scoring. This illustrates Francis's offensive ceiling when he wasn't playing with Jagr.

Regal 08-11-2010 06:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe (Post 27341715)
Even when Francis was top 5 in scoring on the Penguins, everyone knew he wasn't a top 5 player. He got nil for Hart votes and was not a post-season All Star.

Francis's highest finish in the scoring race without Jagr as his regular linemate was 9th in 2002, a historically weak year for forwards. That's the only season Francis received multiple Hart votes too (finishing 6th).

I originally voted Selanne, but I might vote "even" if I thought about it more.

Thing is though, Francis was 27 when he was traded to the Pens, just coming off a 100 point season where he was 12th in league scoring, and on pace for another 92 point season before the trade. Then his scoring went down the rest of the season with the Pens and he had a mediocre first season with them.

He was in his prime, and I think, at least initially, playing for the Pens might have stifled his totals, as he was used in a more defensive role and wasn't the alpha dog on offense. I'm not sure we really saw what he could do in a first line role with a great teammate until the strike shortened year, when he was 5th in scoring and the Selke winner, which is a pretty damn good peak.

I think Jagr helped his totals that season, and the following years, but probably not by a whole lot. We always talk about stars for the most part producing regardless of who they play with, but why does Francis always get taken down because of linemates? No, he really didn't get any Hart support, but it makes sense when you consider his early years were on a crappy team, and he spent his prime with Lemieux and then Jagr. I doubt Selanne gets much Hart support being on the same team as them either (maybe in a couple years with Jagr, but probably less than he actually received)

TheDevilMadeMe 08-11-2010 06:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Regal (Post 27342031)
Thing is though, Francis was 27 when he was traded to the Pens, just coming off a 100 point season where he was 12th in league scoring, and on pace for another 92 point season before the trade. Then his scoring went down the rest of the season with the Pens and he had a mediocre first season with them.

He was in his prime, and I think, at least initially, playing for the Pens might have stifled his totals, as he was used in a more defensive role and wasn't the alpha dog on offense. I'm not sure we really saw what he could do in a first line role with a great teammate until the strike shortened year, when he was 5th in scoring and the Selke winner, which is a pretty damn good peak.

I think Jagr helped his totals that season, and the following years, but probably not by a whole lot. We always talk about stars for the most part producing regardless of who they play with, but why does Francis always get taken down because of linemates? No, he really didn't get any Hart support, but it makes sense when you consider his early years were on a crappy team, and he spent his prime with Lemieux and then Jagr. I doubt Selanne gets much Hart support being on the same team as them either (maybe in a couple years with Jagr, but probably less than he actually received)

Star players definitely have their totals inflated by even greater players and I really don't think anyone has really argued otherwise. Mario Lemieux definitely inflated Jagr's totals, when he came back in the 2nd half of 2000-01 to hand Jagr the Art Ross. And Jagr definitely inflated the totals of lesser players like the stiffs he played with in 98-99, and I would say Francis. (Just like Francis probably inflated the totals of Kevin Dineen in Hartford).

It's just too much coincidence for me that Francis's first time in the top 10 in scoring (let alone top 5) came in 94-95 at the age of 30, when his linemate Jagr won his first Art Ross. This was the start of 4 straight years in the Top 10 in league scoring, all of them with Jagr as his regular linemate. Francis then goes back to the Hurricanes and immediately falls out of the top 10?

Yes, Francis spiked at 9th in scoring in 2002 at the age of 37, but to me, this was right along the lines of what he was doing in Hartford in his 20s, given the extremely poor competition from forwards that season. Credit to his insane longevity that he was as good at 37 as he was in his 20s. But I think it's pretty clear that on his own, he was a fringe top 10 scorer at his best.

This is all heavily stats-laden, but I watched a lot of Francis in Pittsburgh and Carolina (he was one of my favorite players in the league), and while he was an excellent all-round player, he just didn't have game breaking offensive talent on his own.

unknown33 08-11-2010 06:48 PM

Other thing to add, I don't wanna open a new thread for this:
Would you take either Selänne/Francis over Ovechkin/Crosby in all time value - without using projection - right now as it stands?

BraveCanadian 08-11-2010 09:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe (Post 27342143)
This is all heavily stats-laden, but I watched a lot of Francis in Pittsburgh and Carolina (he was one of my favorite players in the league), and while he was an excellent all-round player, he just didn't have game breaking offensive talent on his own.

Yeah but the thing about Francis is that he has a lot more to offer than offense.

TheDevilMadeMe 08-11-2010 10:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BraveCanadian (Post 27344349)
Yeah but the thing about Francis is that he has a lot more to offer than offense.

Absolutely, he did. One of the best two way players and faceoff men of the era. It's why this is such a close call, since selanne blows him away in sheer offense. Offensively, however, Francis is more the mike gartner of centers with the exception of when he played with jagr.

I take mike modano's peak years under Hitchcock over Francis at any point in time, though Francis wins out based on career value.

MadArcand 08-12-2010 02:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe (Post 27344537)
Absolutely, he did. One of the best two way players and faceoff men of the era. It's why this is such a close call, since selanne blows him away in sheer offense. Offensively, however, Francis is more the mike gartner of centers with the exception of when he played with jagr.

I take mike modano's peak years under Hitchcock over Francis at any point in time, though Francis wins out based on career value.

Oh please. Mike Gartner is at least a level below Francis.

Selanne also doesn't blow Francis away in offense - he does so in goalscoring, but was obviously inferior playmaker. I don't think Selanne's goalscoring edge and skating prowess takes him ahead of a player who was much much better at everything else.

Selanne is largely just Bondra with better playmaking.

TheDevilMadeMe 08-12-2010 03:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MadArcand (Post 27346920)
Oh please. Mike Gartner is at least a level below Francis.

Selanne also doesn't blow Francis away in offense - he does so in goalscoring, but was obviously inferior playmaker. I don't think Selanne's goalscoring edge and skating prowess takes him ahead of a player who was much much better at everything else.

Selanne is largely just Bondra with better playmaking.

In calling Francis the "Mike Gartner of centers" offensively, I guess I was assuming that the average center is better than the average winger. Anyway, I really don't see them as that far off in offense only. Gartner peaked at 10th in points in 84-85. Francis peaked at 9th in points without an Art Ross winner on his line.

Prime Selanne was a much better overall offensive player than Francis and I really can't see how you can argue otherwise. In his prime, he could carry a team in a way that Francis really couldn't. Selanne was top 8 in points 6 times, including 5 straight years in the late 90s, including 2nd in points twice, with or without Kariya in the lineup.

It's not like Selanne was that bad of a playmaker either - 4 times in the top 10 in assists. That's far better than Francis's goalscoring. Comparing a guy who had 50+ assists 6 times to Bondra is pretty farfetched IMO.

Others have posted yearbooks (mostly in the Modano thread) about how Selanne was considered one of the very best players in the world at the time; nobody ever considered Francis one of the very best.

I see why someone would vote for Francis over Selanne - his massive edges in defense, intangibles, and year-by-year consistency. But in terms of peak offense, Selanne has a pretty substantial edge. If I thought about it more before voting I would have said "even."

MadArcand 08-12-2010 05:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe (Post 27347188)
It's not like Selanne was that bad of a playmaker either - 4 times in the top 10 in assists. That's far better than Francis's goalscoring. Comparing a guy who had 50+ assists 6 times to Bondra is pretty farfetched IMO.

One, he played with Kariya instead of Oates. Two, I said he was better playmaker, but otherwise pretty much same - speedy goalscorer with mediocre defensive game and intangibles.

As overall peak player, if one includes defense and intangibles, no, Selanne wasn't better.

Current analogues could be say Datsyuk vs. Kovalchuk. Kovalchuk is much better goalscorer and better purely offensive player, often considered one of the top players in the league, but overall... no.


On a sidenote, what's up with all the incredible overrating of Ducks as team or their players (I constantly see friggin' Getzlaff rated ahead of Staal or even better players)? Do they pay off posters on HF?

jkrx 08-12-2010 06:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MadArcand (Post 27346920)
Oh please. Mike Gartner is at least a level below Francis.

Selanne also doesn't blow Francis away in offense - he does so in goalscoring, but was obviously inferior playmaker. I don't think Selanne's goalscoring edge and skating prowess takes him ahead of a player who was much much better at everything else.

Selanne is largely just Bondra with better playmaking.

You are underestimating Selännes playmaking now. I would also say that Selänne was better physically than Francis.

TheDevilMadeMe 08-12-2010 07:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MadArcand (Post 27347578)
One, he played with Kariya instead of Oates. Two, I said he was better playmaker, but otherwise pretty much same - speedy goalscorer with mediocre defensive game and intangibles.

As overall peak player, if one includes defense and intangibles, no, Selanne wasn't better.

Current analogues could be say Datsyuk vs. Kovalchuk. Kovalchuk is much better goalscorer and better purely offensive player, often considered one of the top players in the league, but overall... no.


On a sidenote, what's up with all the incredible overrating of Ducks as team or their players (I constantly see friggin' Getzlaff rated ahead of Staal or even better players)? Do they pay off posters on HF?

Kovalchuk vs. Selanne is an okay analogy, though Selanne was better at using his linemates (Kovalchuk is more similar to Bure in that he doesn't really use his linemates).

I don't think Datsyuk/Francis is the best analogy though. Datsyuk has shown a game breaking ability at times that Francis never really had - finishing 4th in scoring twice without a generational talent on his line and being Hart finalist.

TheDevilMadeMe 08-12-2010 07:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jkrx (Post 27347612)
You are underestimating Selännes playmaking now.

Right, it isn't just a goal scorer vs. a playmaker offensively. Selanne was a pretty good playmaker himself, even if he was better at scoring goals.

Quote:

I would also say that Selänne was better physically than Francis.
Eh, let's not split hairs here. It's not like either guy was known for it.

MadArcand 08-12-2010 07:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe (Post 27347836)
Kovalchuk vs. Selanne is an okay analogy, though Selanne was better at using his linemates (Kovalchuk is more similar to Bure in that he doesn't really use his linemates).

I don't think Datsyuk/Francis is the best analogy though. Datsyuk has shown a game breaking ability at times that Francis never really had - finishing 4th in scoring twice without a generational talent on his line and being Hart finalist.

Eh, Datsyuk has Zetterberg. You could also compare Francis to Zetterberg, actually. Either way, exceptional two-way players who get less press than the flashy Kovalchuk.

Overall, I simply don't believe Selanne contributed near as much as Francis to his teams' success. Plus, outside his one year in WIN he wasn't the top player either (that was Kariya).


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