Who is the 5th best NHL player of all time?
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03-08-2013, 12:01 AM
Join Date: Apr 2009
Originally Posted by
eva unit zero
Here's some 'splainin' for you.
Ray Bourque is one of the four best defensemen of all-time. He was a first-team or second-team all-star seventeen straight times from the start of his career (nineteen total). Other guys who were near Bourque's age and among the top Norris vote-getters in the late-90s/early-00s: Chris Chelios, Larry Murphy, Scott Stevens, Al MacInnis. Outside of that group of HHOFers - all of whom are legendary for their staying power - the guys getting Norris votes in the late 90s/early 2000s were guys who played their primes in the 90s or after. Without Bourque and those four from 96-97 on, the Norris trophy and AS teams are affected as is bolded below (if you assume the order of finish in the voting would have stayed the same):
I took out all of those defensemen, and there's still barely a mention of Niedermayer, but nothing more than he already had.
But the fact that so many people were able to compete and still be effective later in their career means players today aren't "automatically" better by virtue of playing today. You can try to dismiss all those guys as being legendary for their staying power, but isn't that the entire point we're discussing? That's not even including guys like Jagr, Selanne, or 40 yr old Mario coming out of retirement for the 17th time and still being good.
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