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11-23-2012, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
What I find kind of funny is that if someone started a thread, "has Ovechkin been as good as Crosby during their careers", this forum would rightfully be all over that with rants about how there is more to the game of hockey than scoring points. The conclusion would be that he might have been the most dominant scorer in flashes, but not the best player for the whole period.

And if someone started a "has Malkin been the best player since the lockout" thread, it would be rants about inconsistency, laziness and lacking a complete game. The inevitable conclusion would be that he may have been the best in flashes, but not for the whole period.

And here we are in a Crosby thread, talking about inconsistency and injuries. Conclusion? Best player in flashes, but not for the whole period.

Which leads to the question: if none of these guys can be called the best player in the post-lockout period, who can? I mean, someone has to be the best of the era, right?
I thought about this interesting question for some time.

I would say the main problem is that we can say any of them could be the best player post-lockout. Not none of these guys as you phrased the problem.

So we have three players who have a case to be called as the best player post-lockout. It's not even Gretzky-Mario thing in the late-80s. Three is a small group already. Add that even Datsyuk is not that far behind those three. And within very near future Stamkos might be in the conversation.

All this means that we have a small group of forwards who have been dominant post-lockout. Not a single one. There is no reason to believe that one of them has to be the best. You can have an opinion, but it will largely depend on what one values. Peak performance or consistency for example. But nothing is clear-cut.

Actually we had a similar problem not too long ago. Who was the best forward in 2001 - 2004? You had four different Art Ross and four different Hart winners. The most consistent, during this more or less randomly selected period of time, was probably Markus Naslund. But Jagr, Sakic, Iginla, and Forsberg had their peak seasons in that timeframe. Who do you choose? Who was the best forward? It's not clear-cut to me. What happens if we "adjust the era" and add... 2000, 1999 or 2006? Who is the best then?

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