Messier vs. Esposito
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11-22-2012, 08:32 PM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Originally Posted by
Killion;55948363And to your post [I
[/I] as much as I respect Esposito, fact is, had I been selecting Team Canada in 72, I would not have drawn his card from the deck of the then roughly 360+ players I had to choose from. Indeed, there are numerous players from that squad who wouldnt have been invited to my Camp, including the selection of Goaltenders. In many ways, his sweaty diatribe in upbraiding the fans in Vancouver after another loss was simply illustrative of the mistakes Sinden & Ferguson (with Eaglesons overarching influence) had made, were making in terms of player selection. Slow on the uptake behind the bench, won the dealeo by a whisker, a frankly no-name Born Again Christian the Hero.
I always enjoy the humour in your posts, so on this one I am not clear whether you are being sarcastic or not. You really would have left Esposito off the 1972 team?
Originally Posted by
Really, is he?
Considering he was
a much better player when Orr played with him, that is far from open-and-shut.
He was also in his peak years in Boston. Playing with Orr would make anyone better, not just Esposito. And let's not ignore just how much better Orr was playing with Esposito as well. We tend to gloss over that part, why can't do Hall of Fame players be able to play off each other and make each other better (Bossy, Trottier)?
Like I said, I'll give Orr #1 status in 1972. I'd put Esposito over Hull in 1972 but even if some don't who else is near the player that Esposito is in 1972 other than those two?
Originally Posted by
Phil cracks top 10 in scoring 2 times before coming to Boston.
He doesn't top 50 goals until he is 28 and Bobby Orr has taken over that Bruin team.
Maybe Phil cracks top 10 in scoring and goals several times in a career without Orr but it's almost impossible to see him scoring over 55 goals even once in a non Orr environment, never mind he did it 5 straight years when Orr was in full swing.
72 series should get Phil as much credit as it does Henderson when we are talking about a guys career IMO.
To be fair, without Phil Esposito, there is no Paul Henderson. No disrespect to Henderson at all, but the backbone of that team was Phil Esposito, it is right there in black and white on 8 games of footage. That man was a force.
Also keep in mind one other thing too. Up until as late as 1970 no one has scored 50 goals in a season other than Hull, Geoffrion and Richard. Esposito has 49 in 1969 as much as Gordie Howe did at his peak. Orr hadn't quite reached the crazy level he would reach by 1969 so this was Espo's Bruins team. Same for 1968. A guy that finished 2nd in scoring behind Mikita should give all of his credit to a sophomore defenseman who missed half the season? I don't think so. There is too much evidence that points to Esposito being an elite individual talent on his own.
Let's also look at the evidence here. Esposito won 5 Art Rosses. They look like this:
1969 - Esposito 126, Hull 107, Howe 103
1971 - Esposito 152, Orr 139, Bucyk 116
1972 - Esposito 133, Orr 117, Ratelle 109
1973 - Esposito 130, Clarke 104, Orr 101
1974 - Esposito 145, Orr 122, Hodge 105
From 1971 to 1974 it is true that Orr was godly at that time but not so in 1969. That being said, take Orr out of the NHL. I still think Esposito wins 5 Art Rosses and as strange as it may sound, he may even win a couple by even bigger degrees (1971, 1974) without Orr. I don't know how that can't answer anyone's question.
Plus he plays 5 years on NYR and other than his last season he gets between 78-83 points including scoring 42 goals as a 36 year old. The Rangers were also a very mediocre team those years and Esposito was the driving force in getting them to the Cup final in 1979 when he's well past his prime. Messier was toiling around in those lean years in Vancouver at that time.
I'll say this about the truth about being a "leech" or not. A leech doesn't outpoint the person he is supposedly leeching from. Nor does a leech win the MVP over the player he is leeching from.
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