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11-17-2012, 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Theokritos View Post
But value judgment? I'm not sure. In the end you cannot argue for or against the intersubjective validity of a value judgment because it is rooted in your personal worldview and if I don't share your worldview, your argument becomes useless. If we argue about hockey however we already share a common notion: Contributing to scoring goals and preventing goals against is what defines a good hockey player. It's just difficult to decide what a player contributes or fails to contribute in many individual cases, but that's "only" methodical problem.
I should narrow my phrasing a bit -- we make judgements based on what we value in a hockey player. Peak vs prime, offense vs defense, positioning vs hitting, qualities of leadership and integrity... those are values at the end of the day. All other things equal, we rely on our individual perspectives to sort out those messy questions that don't fall neatly into an equation. That messiness really bothers some people, and engages others.

Be that as it may be: Is originality of merit in hockey?
And that is an excellent example of a messy question!

Originally Posted by Hardyvan123
In his 1st season in 92 he is in the mix for the Calder (probably should have won it)
We discussed this in detail during the first vote. While Lidstrom had an argument, it's simply not the case that he "probably" should have won it. He was leading the race at midseason and wasn't very good in the second half. Bure scooped it out from under him on merit.

Still overall in his 1st 3 years he has been pretty productive and has been during that stretch at least one of the top 20 Dmen overall IMO.
That bolded line is extremely generous. We're talking about a 26-team league, so "at least" top-20 would make Lidstrom a solid #1 defenseman in that league -- which he definitely was not.

Now, putting aside those nitpicks, I do think you laid out a strong case for Lidstrom in that post. Even if he wasn't super until around 1997, which is one of his only blemishes, you score some points against Harvey by showing that Lidstrom actually began his prime at around the same age and lasted longer as an elite player.

If Lidstrom had a longer elite career, and played against tougher competition for a significant part of his career (and yes, I agree that he did), then it's on Harvey to blow Lidstrom away with peak, right? And it seems clear enough from the voting you cited that Harvey has maybe a season or two advantage of being ludicrously far ahead of the pack. Factoring in the difference in era and team circumstances, I think it actually comes out looking good for Lidstrom here. At the least, it's really really close... a lot closer than the argument between him and "he who shall not be named".

The biggest missing piece in your analysis, perhaps something to tip the scales, would be playoff performances.

Nick's dominance, longevity and totality of his career make him the #1 Dman of all time IMO.
I think that's a bridge too far, but he has a strong case to leapfrog Harvey into the #3 spot behind Orr and HWSNBN (on the logic that if HWSNBN is ahead of Lidstrom by consensus and Lidstrom jumps Harvey, HWSNBN must also be ahead of Harvey... but then again I would have put HWSNBN #2 in the first place).

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