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03-25-2004, 04:26 PM
Park #2
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Originally Posted by True Blue
Because they viewed him as a very good 4th line center.

I would guess not many. Messier did not seem like he was leading all that much in the past several years. I do not confuse results with leadership. However, the Messier that threatened Kent Nilsson with bodily harm unless he would play with more intensity, was not around. The Messier that intervened with Kennan on behalf of his team was not around. Messier was as guilty about lack of defensive play as anyone else. He refused to make the simple play, opting for overpassing and perfect passes instead. He took MANY stupid, unnecessary penalties.
I do not even see the Messier that purportedly had such an effect on Bertuzzi & Naslund. All I see is a guy seeking to hang on so that he can pass Gordie Howe.
Now that may be rough, but that's just my opinion. I respect Messier, but I need for him to be gone so that I can forget the Messier of the last several years and recall only the mid 90's verison.

"I would just ask you to provide examples as to why you believe that."

Not once did I see him lead by example and hustle to back-check. I DID see tons of cherry picking at the blueline. Not once did I see pr hear of him take a teamate to task for lazy play. Not once did I see a simple dump in instead of overpassing. I did see him refuse to help the organization in the end by refusing to be traded to a contender. There may be many reasons for this, but I maintain that amongst them are selfish reasons. He knew that another team would just make him a 4th liner with no letters.
Ok, so you admit that you are completely guessing. You have no facts, just a general opinion. That is fine.

You can knock his game, but his game has deteriorated because of age - not his leadership or lackthereof. How would you "Hear" of him taking a teammate to task? How would you hear about what he says or talks about behind closed doors? You wouldn't hear, or wouldn't know. And I don't mean that to offend.

Teams wanted him because of his leadership qualities - not because he was a "Good 4th line center". Teams looking for good fourth line centers trade for Jim Dowd.

As I said earlier, Messier had an agreement with Sather for the past two years that he would not be traded. It wasn't a clause, it was a gentleman's agreement. He has a new baby girl in NYC, and did not wish to be traded. I think he's earned that right. As you witnessed in the Ron Francis Trade, the return on Messier really wouldn't have helped the organization much anyway. Leetch was traded because his return could GREATLY help the franchise.

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