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12-07-2012, 10:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Bring Back Scuderi View Post
I'm going to try to do some assassinations, but I'll throw this out there for now. Here's what I have for the best 10 centers in the draft after messing with it throughout the draft. Who am I overrating/underrating? Missing anyone?

1. Don Raleigh - Probably the best offensive player in the draft after Sykora, definitely the best pre-expansion forward in the draft
2. Olli Jokinen - Best regular season resume in a group that's pretty similar
3. Mike Bullard - Very similar to Jokinen, goal-scoring center who wore the C on some weak teams and not the best all-arounder, solid playoff record compared to others
4. Robert Reichel - Regular season resume puts him with his fellow post-expansion guys listed, weak in the playoffs, very good international career but a weak era overall
5. Mike Ribeiro - Not sure why he fell so as long as he did, yes we know his flaws but that resume is pretty much the same as everyone from Jokinen-Olczyk, decent in the playoffs as well
6. Ed Olczyk - Probably my most controversial spot so far, I think he belongs in the same tier as these guys but I don't see his longevity vaulting him any higher (Would team scoring ranks vindicate Edzo?)
7. George Gee - Way too good of a scoring resume to be just a "sparkplug," performed in the playoffs as well
8. Dutch Reibel - Another somewhat low ranking, short career with an incredible peak for this level, the linemate factor plays a big part in this spot
9. Bill Carson - Really underrated Carson coming into the draft unaware of his OHA career, I think it vaults him over the Creighton, McFadden, and Conachers of the world with better NHL resumes.
10. Jozef Stumpel - Solid scorer with a long career, impresses with longevity but a decent peak underneath it

Just missing the cut would be Vladimir Ruzicka (tantalizing talent for this level even with the warts) and John Cullen (better peak than Stumpel).
Not a bad list. I pretty much agree. One quibble I have is that Ribeiro and Stumpel are more or less the same - why have them five spots apart?

Also, I think there has to be room for another guy over Reibel. I've always beek skeptical of that guy.

I agree that Bullard and Jokinen are very similar. I would give him the slight edge as a player because, as you said, he has a bit of a playoff record, and I don't think his deficiencies are as pronounced. I could be wrong. Can the eras account for him having the same career point total in 300 fewer games?

I think Raleigh can take the cake as the best center here. And I definitely agree that Carson is the next best pre-expansion center, ahead of those other names.

Billy Barlow should be a darkhorse candidate for this list.

Also, I agree Cullen and Jimmy Carson should be honorable mentions. They were actually the guys I was thinking of when I tried to put a number on Skene Ronan's legacy when Mike Farkas raised the question of whether he was HHOF-caliber.

I also don't know exactly where to put Olczyk, but I am pretty sure he belongs up there. You're right that his "within team" rankings help his case.

There are other guys I want to consider putting on there due to two-way games - Clement, Schock, Boschman, McKechnie - but who am I kidding, that's a different class of player, they don't have the upside to make the top-10 (which is why we will be making lists for top-6 and bottom-6 centers! )

More or less, you have this right.

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