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Greatest Skaters EVER in the NHL

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Old
12-27-2012, 09:19 PM
  #176
cam042686
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wetcoaster View Post
Gene Carr.

According to many observers the fastest NHL skater may well have been Gene Carr (son of Leafs great Red Carr). A number of pundits have chosen him over such flyers as Cournoyer and Orr. I saw Gene play a number of times over the years and I would have to agree.

Gene was drafted 4th overall by the Blues in 1971. He was injured badly in a car accident after his second year after a trade to the Rangers and was never the same again sustaining severe head and back injuries when the cab he was in was hit in NYC.

Another incredibly fast skater was Willie O'Ree - the first black NHL'er. I saw him play in the old Western Hockey League (after his NHL career) with the Los Angeles Blades and San Diego Gulls. He could just flat out fly.
I agree with Gene Carr. He couldn't do a thing with the puck though.

Craig Wallace

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12-27-2012, 09:23 PM
  #177
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Old
12-29-2012, 03:05 AM
  #178
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I have watched and played hockey since 1968.

The Greatest Skater in NHL history is Bobby Orr. No one else is even close. He was the fastest, the most nimble, had the best agility, and was strong. For most of his career he had bad knees. Everyone from Jean Beliveau to Gordie Howe to Bobby Hull to Guy Lafleur to Darryl Sittler to Lanny Macdonald to Brad Park to Scotty Bowman to Wayne Gretzky ... and so on, has identified Orr as the greatest skater in the history of the game.

Other great skaters were:

Maurice Richard
Jacques Lemaire
Dave Keon
Jean Beliveau
Bobby Hull
Yvan Cournoyer
Guy Lafleur
Gilbert Perreault
Mike Gartner ... and these were all great hockey players.

Other great skaters were Gene Carr, Ron Flockhart, Rick MacLeish, Glen Anderson, and Paul Coffey. Some of these guys were Stars and some were under-achievers, but they were all good skaters.

Reminder: Coffey is not even in Orr's league - in anything.


Last edited by Redscotter: 12-29-2012 at 03:14 AM.
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12-31-2012, 01:14 AM
  #179
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Originally Posted by tjcurrie View Post
Wow. So many to name. Here's 10 for me.

No order:

Orr
Coffey
Bure
Fedorov
Gartner
Modano
Lafleur
Perreault
Zubov
Messier

Edit: I'll add Denis Savard too. Maybe not the fastest, but man was that guy a magician on his skates.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redscotter View Post
I have watched and played hockey since 1968.

The Greatest Skater in NHL history is Bobby Orr. No one else is even close. He was the fastest, the most nimble, had the best agility, and was strong. For most of his career he had bad knees. Everyone from Jean Beliveau to Gordie Howe to Bobby Hull to Guy Lafleur to Darryl Sittler to Lanny Macdonald to Brad Park to Scotty Bowman to Wayne Gretzky ... and so on, has identified Orr as the greatest skater in the history of the game.

Other great skaters were:

Maurice Richard
Jacques Lemaire
Dave Keon
Jean Beliveau
Bobby Hull
Yvan Cournoyer
Guy Lafleur
Gilbert Perreault
Mike Gartner ... and these were all great hockey players.

Other great skaters were Gene Carr, Ron Flockhart, Rick MacLeish, Glen Anderson, and Paul Coffey. Some of these guys were Stars and some were under-achievers, but they were all good skaters.

Reminder: Coffey is not even in Orr's league - in anything.
Both of these lists are missing Pat LaFontaine and Steve Yzerman.
LaFontaine's injuries weren't generally skating related, so he remained pretty slick when he was able to make it out there. Yzerman suffered that big knee injury early on, and then another severe neck injury in his prime. One can only imagine what he would have looked like without those.

Mark Howe even has an argument if we're willing to look at his WHA years and his first NHL year (before the accident) because he was a pretty slick skater even afterwards - and having a spike dug into your thigh will do wonders for your skating.

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Old
12-31-2012, 02:44 AM
  #180
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Bure, Gartner, Orr, Lafleur, Fedorov are my Top-5, Coffey right behind them.

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Old
01-01-2013, 08:56 AM
  #181
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Originally Posted by Hawksfan2828 View Post
Hands down its Denis Savard.
Surprised it took so long for someone to mention him.

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01-02-2013, 03:45 PM
  #182
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It is now very cliched to hear of someone being able to make plays at top speed, but I think Pavel Bure actually did this.
If you look at many of his break away goals, he's moving so fast by the time he makes his final deke, he almost appears to be out of control. As you watch, you are almost left a little bit in fear bc he's moving so fast, you can't help but wonder what would happen if he runs into the goalie, goal posts or end boards.

Best skater is hard to define though. For me, I always think of the guys with the best combination of speed with an effortless stride. Bure definitely did not have an effortless stride (like Paul Coffey).

Some great names mentioned here.

I think Paul Lawless was a beautiful skater. Like someone said though, being a great skater doesn't make you a hockey player, it just gives you a big leg up.

Not to nit pick, but someone mentioned Rod Langway's wheels being responsible for his Norris'...
That is definitely not how I remember Langway...
Anyone else care to comment?

I mentioned Paul Lawless. Another guy I remember from the Nucks, and a former 1st rounder that fizzled, is Jose Charbonneau. He had a great set of wheels on him too, unfortunately, he could only use them to his advantage in roller hockey.

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01-02-2013, 08:45 PM
  #183
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Originally Posted by eva unit zero View Post
Both of these lists are missing Pat LaFontaine and Steve Yzerman.
LaFontaine's injuries weren't generally skating related, so he remained pretty slick when he was able to make it out there. Yzerman suffered that big knee injury early on, and then another severe neck injury in his prime. One can only imagine what he would have looked like without those.

Mark Howe even has an argument if we're willing to look at his WHA years and his first NHL year (before the accident) because he was a pretty slick skater even afterwards - and having a spike dug into your thigh will do wonders for your skating.
Both great skaters for sure. I just picked 10 guys. Hard to pick 10 and not leave anyone off. I'm imagining Yzerman right now just weaving in and out of traffic in his offensive prime. The guy was phenomenal.

Anyone mention Petr Bondra yet?

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01-03-2013, 01:47 AM
  #184
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Helmut Balderis ...maybe not so much when he finally got to the NHL but still one of the best skaters all time

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01-03-2013, 01:34 PM
  #185
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Originally Posted by nutbar View Post
Helmut Balderis ...maybe not so much when he finally got to the NHL but still one of the best skaters all time
Me being a lifelong Stars fan, my dad took me to a game in Edmonton back when Balderis was on the team. I remember seeing him on the ice, but I was too young to really "watch".

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01-04-2013, 01:54 AM
  #186
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Originally Posted by nutbar View Post
Helmut Balderis ...maybe not so much when he finally got to the NHL but still one of the best skaters all time
Absolutely. And while we're at it, Sergei Makarov deserves a mention too.

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01-09-2013, 04:39 PM
  #187
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I would say the top 3/4 guys on this list would deserve to be listed among the greatest skaters ever. I would swap Gabs position with Bure.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/s...age=BOE/skater

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01-23-2013, 10:10 AM
  #188
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Originally Posted by Caballo Blanco View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by IComeInPeace View Post
It is now very cliched to hear of someone being able to make plays at top speed, but I think Pavel Bure actually did this.
If you look at many of his break away goals, he's moving so fast by the time he makes his final deke, he almost appears to be out of control. As you watch, you are almost left a little bit in fear bc he's moving so fast, you can't help but wonder what would happen if he runs into the goalie, goal posts or end boards.

Best skater is hard to define though. For me, I always think of the guys with the best combination of speed with an effortless stride. Bure definitely did not have an effortless stride (like Paul Coffey).

Some great names mentioned here.

I think Paul Lawless was a beautiful skater. Like someone said though, being a great skater doesn't make you a hockey player, it just gives you a big leg up.



Not to nit pick, but someone mentioned Rod Langway's wheels being responsible for his Norris'...
That is definitely not how I remember Langway...
Anyone else care to comment?

I mentioned Paul Lawless. Another guy I remember from the Nucks, and a former 1st rounder that fizzled, is Jose Charbonneau. He had a great set of wheels on him too, unfortunately, he could only use them to his advantage in roller hockey.

Lawless was a great skater. Langway was NOT. Great D man, but skating wasn't his thing.

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01-23-2013, 04:11 PM
  #189
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Originally Posted by VMBM
And while we're at it, Sergei Makarov deserves a mention too.
If we emphasize on smoothness, balance and quickness rather than a pure speed, then Sergei Makarov was definitely one of the best ever. At least during his first seasons as he lost his condition pretty quickly.

HM to NYR d-men Brian Leetch and Reijo Ruotsalainen who were extremely agile skaters.

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01-23-2013, 04:18 PM
  #190
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Bob Gainey and Ray Bourque deserve some mention. Gainey was fast, strong and maybe one of the best body checking forwards ever. Bourque was like an agile fire hydrant. Difficult to beat one on one and even harder to knock down.

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01-23-2013, 04:21 PM
  #191
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Reminder: Coffey is not even in Orr's league - in anything.
Just oozes with bias.

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01-24-2013, 12:43 AM
  #192
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I thought I would share this. This goal was seemingly lost and forgotten, as the footage is difficult to find and nobody ever seems to bring it up. It really shows how quickly Bure could carry the puck, and his ability to tee up a perfect slap shot at such speed speaks volumes about his skill level.

This might be the fastest depiction of Bure available online, but considering how many games he has played that aren't available footage-wise, I'm certain he has skated even faster at some point. Even on his first NHL shift, he isn't skating through the neutral zone as quickly as he is here. Also, the neutral zone was 4 feet longer than it is today, in case you'd like to compare his speed with that of more recent players.



Last edited by JetsAlternate: 01-24-2013 at 01:48 AM.
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01-24-2013, 01:25 AM
  #193
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I just uploaded this today....This might be the fastest depiction of Bure available online.
Ya, thanks, against my Leafs.Pylons...
Oh, and look what I downloaded today...


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01-24-2013, 02:06 PM
  #194
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Originally Posted by IComeInPeace View Post
Best skater is hard to define though. For me, I always think of the guys with the best combination of speed with an effortless stride. Bure definitely did not have an effortless stride
agree, Bure wasn't the most graceful skater ever in the game, he didn't skate ugly though and it was beautiful to watch how he skated with and handled the puck at top speed

Sergei Fedorov was a very graceful skater

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what season is this? is it his first full year with the Panthers when the team made the playoffs, 9900?

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01-24-2013, 02:09 PM
  #195
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Without looking at the article or any responses, it's Pavel Bure, my favorite player growing up even though he was never on my team. He pretty much got me into hockey.

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01-24-2013, 02:17 PM
  #196
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I'm surprised Doug Gilmore hasn't been mentioned... I don't think he's top 10 but he was a joy to watch

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01-24-2013, 02:27 PM
  #197
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Scott Niedermayer - He may not have the fastest overall speed but his edge control and silky stride made him look like he was floating on a cloud out there. Just the perfect skater in terms of technique/mechanics, made it look effortless he was so efficient.

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01-24-2013, 02:53 PM
  #198
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Originally Posted by the edler View Post
agree, Bure wasn't the most graceful skater ever in the game, he didn't skate ugly though and it was beautiful to watch how he skated with and handled the puck at top speed

Sergei Fedorov was a very graceful skater



what season is this? is it his first full year with the Panthers when the team made the playoffs, 99–00?
The footage is from March 17th of the following season, 2000-01, just two years before he was forced to quit playing. It's incredible how much of an impact he made on the Panthers in just 3 years (January 17, 1999 to March 18, 2002) with the team. It's also incredible that he could still skate the way he did after his right knee was almost ruined a few years prior:

http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=645068

Quote:
The first sign of the knee problems that led to Bure's early retirement happened early in the 1995-96 season. He tore the ACL in his right knee on Nov. 9 and was done for the season.

Bure was debilitated by a neck injury the following season, but scored 51 goals in 1997-98. However, he suffered another right knee injury shortly after being dealt to Florida, missed another three weeks and would later be lost for the season due to more surgery.

"At that point it was just another surgery, but I had to get over it," Bure said. "I knew I had to do what I can to come back as soon as I can, through the rehab, and we'd see what happened."
Interesting note about his skating style from Kerry Banks' 1999 book, "Pavel Bure: The Riddle of the Russian Rocket," as cited on Bure's Wikipedia page:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pavel_Bure#Playing_style

Quote:
Vancouver Canucks conditioning coach Peter Twist noticed during Bure's rehabilitation period following his first major knee injury in 1995, that his skating style was particularly unique in comparison to typical North American players. He explained, "Most players skate on their inside edge and push off at a 45-degree angle, but Bure starts on his outer edge and rolls over to his inside edge and pushes back straighter on his stride ... he gets more power and force in his stride to get up to top speed quicker."
And here are some excerpts from a recent article (from this past November) about Bure from NHL.com:

http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=645068

Quote:
"Pavel sold the game just on his skill set alone," Mike Keenan, who coached Bure in Vancouver and Florida, told NHL.com. "People would come to watch just him play. I have coached a lot of great players and Pavel was my wife's favorite player. She would say, 'Every time he gets the puck I have to stand up.' I said, 'Well, you're not alone.'
Quote:
"There were smoother skaters … but Pavel just had this burst of speed that was just so quick," former Canucks captain Trevor Linden told NHL.com. "It was almost like he could fly, it was incredible. Some guys are fast and some guys are explosive -- Pavel was explosive and fast. He chopped at the ice a bit, but he just exploded out of the blocks. It was just so powerful."

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01-24-2013, 02:59 PM
  #199
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Originally Posted by JetsAlternate View Post
I thought I would share this. This goal was seemingly lost and forgotten, as the footage is difficult to find and nobody ever seems to bring it up. It really shows how quickly Bure could carry the puck, and his ability to tee up a perfect slap shot at such speed speaks volumes about his skill level.

This might be the fastest depiction of Bure available online, but considering how many games he has played that aren't available footage-wise, I'm certain he has skated even faster at some point. Even on his first NHL shift, he isn't skating through the neutral zone as quickly as he is here. Also, the neutral zone was 4 feet longer than it is today, in case you'd like to compare his speed with that of more recent players.

I think i saw a similar sequence of Gretzky during the 1987 CC-final, he did'nt score but just that flowing speed through the middle. Perhaps Bures was faster though.

Edit: After watching it again, it definetely was faster.


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01-24-2013, 03:00 PM
  #200
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