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01-02-2013, 03:42 PM
  #2
Sens Rule
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Mario was almost certainly the best player in the world in the years of his retirement. I mean he came back older and slower and HUGELY overweight and put up the best PPG in the NHL for half a season and almost had a GPG average.. after 4.5 years off. I think the entire time of his retirement he was likely the best player in the world.

Was Hasek the best goalie in the world in his early to mid 20's as he was behind the iron curtain?

Not that Selanne was the best player in the world.. but he did not come over right after being drafted and exploded to 76 goals as a rookie in the NHL as soon as he did come over to the NHL.

None of the great Russians of the 80's could have been better then Gretzky. In the mid to late 70's it is possible a Soviet player could have been the best in the world?!?!?

Jean Beliveau quickly emerged as a star after the Habs bought out his contract from the Qubec Aces. Not sure if he would be better then Howe and others in his late teens early 20's.. but he was almost certanly the best player in the world not in the NHL back then.

Eric Lindros at 18 on the Canadian National Team was close to the best player around. Mario at 17 in Junior? Orr at 17 in Junior? Gretzky in the WHA as a Junior? Hull in the WHA in the early to mid-70's? Could Hull have still led the NHL in goals at that point or come close? Ovechkin in the lockout season that would have seen him 18 years old and in the NHL... Crosby at 17 and a junior would have done a number in the NHL if he was eligible.. and if there was a season!!!!

Potvin's last year in junior he could have been among the best defencemen in the NHL likely... since he was as a rookie. Bossy was subject to the 20 year old draft years and immediately got 50 goals in the NHL as a rookie... his junior career is 4 seasons at pretty much the same pace... seems to me he could have been an 18 and 19 year old 50 goal scorer possibly in the NHL.

Paul Kariya held out at the peak of his game.

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