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02-10-2013, 01:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Darth Yoda View Post
So what happened when the goalies and perhaps defensive coaching got better around 1990? His shot just could'nt beat it?
I don't understand this arguement - goaltending wasn't really any different in 1990 than it was in 1988 or 87. Gretzky was just getting old, which happens to everyone. He already has more 60+, 70+, 80+ goal seasons than anyone else, the only 90+ goal season ever, is tied with Bossy for the most 50+ goal seasons, and has the most 40+ goal seasons. Gretzky's goalscoring was on the decline - that happens to everyone. This idea that Gretzky was somehow the only player affected by changes in goaltending (which is what people seem to imply when they make these types of statements) is absurd. He was just getting older.

Most goalscorers decline faster than other positions, which is evidenced by Gretzky's numerous records I already mentioned above. Its even further evidenced by a breakdown of the top goalscoring seasons of all time. Last I saw, only about 12% of them were from players past 28 yrs of age. There's never been a single 50 goal scorer past the age of 35. Ever. Gretzky peaked early and declined around when he should have - after posting 9 seasons with 50+ goals. To think anyone would question his longevity as a goal scorer is rather surprising.

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