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02-10-2013, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by SaintPatrick33 View Post
Gretzky had his last 50+ goal season at age 28. As a number of others have pointed out that's an age where a player NORMALLY sees a permenant decline in his goal scoring. The fact that you're trying to twist it into something else suggests an agenda as you're clearly holding something against Gretzky that gets held against no other player.
There IS something to it, though. You look at the goal scoring arcs of every other of the top career goal scorers, you won't find another that dropped anywhere near as much as Gretzky, who was done as a great scorer by 28. It's even more jarring because he was so much more dominant than the rest of them at his peak. Everybody else carried on as top scorers into the their 30s, even late 30s. Even Yzerman, the only other guy that never hit the top 10 again after 28, was a goal away from being a top 10 scorer at 35 after changing his game drastically.

It can not simply be explained away by injury and natural decline, not when Gretzky is such a big outlier here, stick out like a sore thumb as THE only guy with such an extreme swing as the style of the game changed so rapidly. This affected peers like Messier and even Gartner less (better goal scoring skillsets for a more modern game, really, less reliant on a slapshot as the key in their shot selection). Lots of these guys got injured. They all played tons of hockey, most of them more physically demanding brands of hockey.

Last edited by revolverjgw: 02-10-2013 at 05:07 PM.
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