Players Poll taken before 1980-81 season
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09-14-2009, 10:59 AM
Student Of The Game
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Regina, SK
Originally Posted by
I don't buy it.
Gainey was a much better skater than Clarke and more physical than either Clarke or Ramsay.
He was probably the number 3 forward on the Canadiens after Lafleur and Lemaire in terms of importance to the team's success. An argument could be made that he was #2 in the 78 and 79 seasons. IIRC, only Lafleur saw more ice-time among the forwards than Gainey, as both were frequently double-shifted.
Gainey was a true impact player, despite his non-existant puck skills.
There is no doubt that he is awesome, but I have a feeling that his contributions to 5 Stanley Cups made a greater imapct on his all-time legacy than he truly deserved. The statistics show that he was no better than Clarke or Ramsay at actually keeping the puck out of his net (skills like speed and bodychecking are nice, but the end result matters - did you get scored on or not?) Playing on Montreal gave Gainey a significant advantage in this regard and he still did not distance himself from those two.
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