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11-29-2012, 02:20 AM
Czech Your Math
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Originally Posted by Rowdy Roddy Peeper View Post
And yes, it's very impressive. But when you consider that Jagr was a relatively one-dimensional offensive winger while Crosby was elite in other aspects of the game, it becomes clear why some people would prefer his half-season when the raw offensive numbers are as close as they are.
Personally, I think the "overall game" vs. "one dimensional" argument is a bit misleading. First, it's quite subjective, at least to the degree to which any perceived difference exists. Second, and one reason for that, is that a player may be as or more effective playing a less "overall game" than one who does. I'm going to sort of merge some frequent examples:

Player A has the same or better offensive skills and often has some combination of size and/or possession game. Size (and therefore reach) and physicality (the ability to deliver hits to get the puck or absorb hits to keep the puck) often contribute to the possession game.

Player B has very good offensive skills, but may be above avg. at more facets of the game.

Player A plays the superior possession game, and between that and his equal or better offensive skills, plays a highly effective game: generating scoring chances and not allowing opponents as much possession to generate their own.

Player B is not maintaining significantly less possession, which often generates fewer scoring chances, and allows the opponents more possession to create their own. Their may be more loose pucks which Player B has to help try to track down ("he goes in the corners more") and more opponent possession causes forces him to play more defense ("he plays more of a two way game"), which creates an illusion to some extent. All that may be remembered is Player A concentrating more on offense, even though he still creates as much or more of an overall advantage, while Player B seems to be doing more of the "little things" which are necessary when his team is unable to keep possession as much. There are other differences as well: a center and wing have different responsibilities... playing "good defense" is not the same as being a potential shutdown forward. It's easy to miss the forest for the trees at times.

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