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12-30-2012, 10:53 AM
Big Phil
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Originally Posted by Czech Your Math View Post
There are similarities at the top, at least during Dionne's peak, but the depth of competition was substantially better during Selanne's era. There's just no denying that when Euro/Russian/US players make up roughly half the top 5/10 in goals/points, that it's a lot harder to have high finishes.

If you look at their Hart finishes among forwards:

Dionne 2,2,3,3
Selanne 2,2,3

Again, very close. I don't think one should split hairs too much with award voting, it has some value, but it's not gospel either. Dionne has more depth of finishes, but that was when just a vote or two might be the difference between top 5 and out of the top 10, so almost meaningless IMO.

Dionne was the straw that stirred the drink, but it's not like his linemates dropped off the proverbial cliff once they were no longer playing with him (league GPG weighted by GP in parentheses):

'82-85 LAK (ages 27-30): 214 GP, 89 G, 212 Pts, 0.99 PPG (7.85)
'85-87 BOS (ages 30-33): 198 GP, 98 G, 192 Pts, 0.97 PPG (7.65)

'84-86 (ages 27-30): 218 GP, 94 G, 232 Pts, 1.06 PPG (7.86)
'87-89 (ages 30-33): 205 GP, 70 G, 192 Pts, 0.94 PPG (7.41)

That's not far different from the decrease one might expect from a player simply due to age. Simmer doesn't really decline at all and Taylor's decrease is not more than would be expected due to age and decrease in league GPG. In fact, I'd say the decline from their last 3 years with Dionne to their next 3 years without him was less than most would expect, even without considering the difference in having (or not having) Dionne as their center.
Alright, I was always a big Teemu fan and I know he was a great player on his own comparable to some very great names. But I think we are losing the fact that Simmer was literally a nobody until he teamed up with Dionne. That has to go for something. The guy was a first team all-star two years in a row. We've seen instances with players when they were up and comers and when they hit their stride they exploded, but with Simmer he just went from a guy who had 25 points in 83 career games to a star.

I will agree that Selanne would have had an NHL with more depth when you compare Dionne in the 1970s, but let's face it, neither Dionne nor Selanne were guys who were worried about 70-80 point men catching them. When you evaluate guys like this I think really only the top level talent matters. There were more Ray Whitneys in Teemu's time, but does that count? Plus once the 1980s arrived and the 21 teams then I think what Dionne saw in the 1980s depth wise and certainly top end-wise, it would be similar to the 1990s with Teemu.

I guess we'll have to disagree on this and how boring would these boards be if we didn't, right? I think Dionne beats Selanne based on being slightly more revered during his peak years and being able to maintain a higher level of play for longer with more elite seasons. It isn't like Dionne blows him out of the water, it is just that there is too much offense in Dionne's arsenal to ignore and this is one of those players where I believe he beats him at his own game.

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