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12-16-2012, 11:31 PM
vadim sharifijanov
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Originally Posted by toob View Post
Physicality isnt the same thing as playing defensively. A guy like Lindros was OK defensively but he was legitimately called the most complete player in his prime. I agree that physical play is a feather in Messier's cap, and unlike some who would seek to marginalize it, i think it is fairly big. But let's not conflate it with D.
of course. but my point was that messier's game was so defined by his physicality that, like scott stevens, it becomes almost impossible to talk about his defensive play without focusing on the physicality. all i'm saying is that it seems like jumping to conclusions to assume that writers discussing messier's defensive play were confusing physicality with defensive ability, as you suggest.

Originally Posted by toob View Post
So if Messier is going to get credit for shutting Trottier down in 84 (despite the stats) based on anecdotes, well why should we disregard the anecdotes that Yzerman got credit for shutting Gretzky down in 87 (supported by stats)?

Demers does seem to deserve a ton of credit, he was the one who made Yzerman captain after a talk with him despite others misgivings, and Yzerman noted that the captaincy made him take his play more seriously and it's no surprise that his best years followed after. And he seems to have got the credit with all the recognition. However, in 88 that team under Demers made an incredibly strong run after Yzerman's injury, and then next year key players in that run (Probert/Klima) were having off ice troubles, and Demers was losing the team. Yzerman still carried them that year as well.
i don't think i suggested that yzerman did or did not shut down gretzky. all i was saying is that the same team did just as well the next year, which might suggest that it was as much demers' coaching as yzerman's stellar play. i don't doubt that yzerman was great. whether it was messier in '84 great... well if it was, that's conn smythe great.

Originally Posted by eva unit zero View Post
Fedorov posted 24-27-51 in 45 games before the trade (pace for 45-50-95 on 84 GP) and 10-26-36 in 28 games (pace for 30-78-108) after the trade. His final line was 34-53-87 in 73, pace for 39-61-100 in 84GP.

Yzerman put up 21-43-64 in 31 games after the trade (pace for 57-117-174 in 84, which would win the Ross and assist title) compared to 37-36-73 in 53 (59-57-117 in 84) before the trade.

For completeness, Jimmy Carson posted 26-25-51 in 52 games (pace for 42-40-82 in 84) with Detroit, and 12-10-22 in 34 (pace for 30-25-55 in 84) with LA. So clearly Carson was the big beneficiary of the "timeshare" system - he finished with 38-37-73 in 86 (NHL record for GP!).

It's hard not to take into consideration that '84 Trottier outscored '87 Gretzky in the relevant series, and that '84 Trottier scored MORE againt Edmonton than other opponents while '87 Gretzky scored considerably less against Detroit.

Again, compare Trottier's finals numbers to the rest of his playoff. Messier didn't shut down Trottier any more than anyone else did. So unless you are suggesting Yzerman's 1987 performance against Gretzky was "otherwordly defense", don't perpetuate the idea that Trottier suddenly ran into a brick wall and stopped scoring. He already wasn't scoring.
we would do well to notice that outside of one single game where the islanders won, trottier scores one point in four oilers wins. that's a LOT lower than his playoff average. which is to say, you need four games to win a playoff series. messier neutralized trottier four times out of five.

Originally Posted by toob View Post
Bob Probert scored almost 30 goals in 87-88 (granted, he played much of the year with Yzerman, but he did score 21 points in 16 playoff games). Also, the Wings added John Chabot, who put up a respectable season. With a young Adam Oates filling in for Yzerman, and Chabot able to provide another center who wasn't an AHLer, the Wings suddenly could survive an injury to their star player and not see their season end in a last-place finish. Were Yzerman healthy that year, it's likely he is a finalist or even wins the Hart, and the Wings have a much better shot at beating the Oilers with one of the league's three best players.
right. the point is, if the team can add john chabot to fill yzerman's role and not miss a beat... well you connect the dots. john chabot, for the record, played his entire relatively brief career in the 80s and never scored more than 60 points in any season.

oates, klima, probert, they were all there in '87 too.

Originally Posted by toob View Post
Maybe Carson needed to leave and Coffey needed to come over earlier? I dont think there's too much to be read into it except that maybe he didnt have the story of the other players and those guys and Lemieux had insane years themselves along with a lot of players in 93. It wasnt really Yzerman's best year though.

Honestly maybe it was just because at that point Yzerman was underrated? This article hints towards that (some quotes below).

"Steve Yzerman may be the best hockey player hardly anyone has heard of ...he's not even the most popular player on his own team."

"When hockey fans gather, they talk of the superstars - Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Eric Lindros. Somehow Yzerman's name doesn't come up."

"I think the fans, even here in Detroit, tend to take Stevie for granted," Red Wings Coach Bryan Murray says. "I think people have seen him skate and go quietly about his own business for so long that sometimes they forget he's even there."

"Steve leads the same way Gretzky leads," Coffey says. Neither guy says a whole lot. They don't talk just to be making noise. Nobody would doubt that Wayne Gretzky is a leader. It just kind of amazes me that Steve is taken so much for granted here in Detroit. This guy is a wonderful hockey player."
i can buy that. i mean, not that yzerman in '93 was as great as lafontaine, gilmour, or oates, but i can buy that he was starting to become underrated after fedorov came onto the scene. classic what you have done for me lately syndrome.

"best hockey player hardly anyone has heard of" is a little much though, considering that his face was on the upper deck box alongside gretzky, messier, and hull.

but all of this is okay. we all acknowledge that yzerman was a phenomenal player. and i acknowledge that his '93 season was excellent. but the suggestion several pages back that he should have been the second team all-star center would have seemed ridiculous at the time, and seems ridiculous in retrospect. i mean, the guy had a scorching hot end to the season, played in an original six market that was newly reinvigorated, was the captain of a marquee first place team. seems like if he was really as good as those other three centers (and yeah, maybe in most years stevie's '93 season would be a second team all-star year in many other years, but '93 was a very very special season for four other centers), all the pieces were in place for him to take that second team all-star spot. it's not like he was playing on a last place team in hartford.

Last edited by vadim sharifijanov: 12-16-2012 at 11:45 PM. Reason: typos
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