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11-09-2012, 08:35 AM
Join Date: May 2012
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I'd say they are pretty much equal. Not much separating them although they were two completely different players.

I will take the minority view here and say Brian Leetch. It's more Aesthetics for me than anything. I prefer the puck moving, free dangling guys like Leetch. Their effectiveness is pretty much a wash. I think Leetch reached a higher peak, but Al lasted longer at his peak. Both were a treat to watch. Al had the most intimidating slap shot I have ever seen from a dman and Leetch had the skating ability and puck possession of very few. Obviously Al was better defensively, but if you give credence to the idea that puck possession is also a form of defence, I think Leetch closes the gap some.

Leetch drove the play to the oppositions end as well as any dman in a long time, to me, that has as much value as being solid in your own end.

It's the same reason I value Jagr above some of the lesser talented, but more defensively polished guys who are somewhat close. It's hard to make up the gap, Jagr's defensive short comings are overblown imo, because the puck was always on his stick, puck possession and the ability to drive the play towards the opponents goal is just as valuable as being solid in your own end, maybe even moreso, and you can't win without scoring as the game starts 0-0. I'd take an offensively talented guy over a Rod Langway type most of the time.

Not to say leetch was miles ahead of Al on the stats sheet, but I believe in a controlling the game sense, he was more effective at their best. I guess it comes down to what you prefer and your roster makeup.

Last edited by habsfanatics*: 11-09-2012 at 08:46 AM.
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