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04-22-2013, 11:06 AM
  #328
pdd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shazariahl View Post
My thoughts exactly. Even if, per game, Lemieux was just as good (which I don't think, but whatever), I'm left comparing two guys: one who missed tons of games and even entire seasons where he couldn't help his team, vs one who didn't. Both performed at similar levels, but one did it more each season, and for more seasons. While doing so, he also set every major scoring record ever, won more Hart and Art Ross trophies, and won twice as many championships as the person being compared to him. On a per game bases, sure, they're close. As for who was better over a season, decade, or career? Gretzky in every category.
Despite the fact that Gretzky wins the "total accumulation" offensive race, I choose Lemieux as the better player for the 90s.

Why?

Instead of simply being an elite player from the mid 90s on like Gretzky, Lemieux was still DOMINANT. This is where the "Lemieux>Gretzky" view comes from. Those too young to have seen dominant Gretzky saw Lemieux (the best player in the world) playing a significantly higher level of hockey than they ever saw from Gretzky. Lemieux's mirror was shattered after he returned from retirement, in the same way Gretzky's was; an older, declined Lemieux was still a great player but couldn't dominate like he once did.

It's an argument that happens often; many Wings fans prefer Datsyuk to Fedorov, and there have been many who felt Fedorov was better than Yzerman. The historical truth of the matter is the complete reverse.

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