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Will we ever see a better player than Gretzky? Will we know it?

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Old
02-23-2013, 11:51 AM
  #76
jigglysquishy
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Originally Posted by revolverjgw View Post
It's NOT the same though, I don't even see how people can come to that conclusion. You go through a list of top players in the 80s and it's almost exclusively Canadians. 23 of the top 100 scorers from Gretzky's prime years (I picked 80-81 to 87-88 because it's the same length of time as the post-lockout era) are non-Canadian, just 3 in the top 20. HALF of the top 100 since 2005 are non-Canadian, 10 in the top 20. Nowadays, more often than not it's a non-Canadian winning the Art Ross, Hart and Vezina.

Look at the goalies. During Gretzky's prime, only ONE non-Canadian is in the top 20 winningest, since the lockout it's well under half. This year it's more like one-third.

How is it even logical to think, that with so many countries producing so much more talent and all of them coming to the NHL, that talent HASN'T increased? With so many kids playing hockey, with the system being so efficient now, with so much money in the industry, I'd say even Canada is producing more skill than ever... but it's so much harder for them to stand out. And none of them are going to put up Dale Hawerchuk numbers... even though plenty of them are more skilled.

And this talent is spread out. Every team has a good goalie, whereas before half the league's teams had to make due with some 5'9'' Canadian. You can't pad your stats in an era of parity like you could in a watered down league comprised of mostly North Americans.

Gretzky has said as much... there is WAY more talent out there today, it's not even comparable. And he deserves a lot of credit for this. The old guys grew the game tremendously. It's illogical to think their efforts haven't resulted in a talent boom, and yet some people that don't want to accept it.

The talent pool is NOT a static thing, not in a global, big-money sport like this.
I would actually argue that the change in talent is as much a decrease in Canadian players as it is an increase in foreign talent.

And don't discredit the 87 Canada Cup. The Canadian went up against arguably the greatest non-Canadian team ever and Gretzky put up 2.33 PPG and Lemieux 2.00 PPG.

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02-23-2013, 12:18 PM
  #77
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Originally Posted by alko View Post
some time ago Peter Stastny (the one you from your list) said, he sometimes laugh, when he looks to the videos from 80s. And he means now the overall quality of the players. The movement, skills ... His words were, that the game level this days is far far above his years.
You have to remember one thing too, if the common player has improved (and human nature suggests we do that) then the stars would improve too. Peter Stastny himself would be a better skater in today's game then he was 30 years ago because of more training. Every player had the same advantages and disadvantages in the 1980s as Gretzky did. Yet he outclassed them at a mind boggling level. These were all-time greats he was doing this to. The names I mentioned are HHOFers and are at least as good back then as the stars of today are. That was the point.

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Originally Posted by SnowblindNYR View Post
I feel very ignorant but why was Gretzky's last dominant year at 30? Seems young to me for a guy that relied on his mind more than physical attributes. Was it injuries?
I meant "dominant" from a Gretzky standpoint. In other words this was the last time he really "lapped" the entire field of competition in the NHL. After 1991 he still had three 100 point seasons, an Art Ross and a legendary Cup run, not to mention leading the NHL in assists three times. But 1991 was one of those years where he did things similar to the 1980s as far as domination. It was his 12th season. I think that's still pretty impressive to be peeling apart the entire NHL that whole time and only having a peer once another generational talent showed up (Lemieux).

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02-23-2013, 12:38 PM
  #78
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Originally Posted by revolverjgw View Post
It's NOT the same though, I don't even see how people can come to that conclusion. You go through a list of top players in the 80s and it's almost exclusively Canadians. 23 of the top 100 scorers from Gretzky's prime years (I picked 80-81 to 87-88 because it's the same length of time as the post-lockout era) are non-Canadian, just 3 in the top 20. HALF of the top 100 since 2005 are non-Canadian, 10 in the top 20. Nowadays, more often than not it's a non-Canadian winning the Art Ross, Hart and Vezina.

Look at the goalies. During Gretzky's prime, only ONE non-Canadian is in the top 20 winningest, since the lockout it's well under half. This year it's more like one-third.

How is it even logical to think, that with so many countries producing so much more talent and all of them coming to the NHL, that talent HASN'T increased? With so many kids playing hockey, with the system being so efficient now, with so much money in the industry, I'd say even Canada is producing more skill than ever... but it's so much harder for them to stand out. And none of them are going to put up Dale Hawerchuk numbers... even though plenty of them are more skilled.

And this talent is spread out. Every team has a good goalie, whereas before half the league's teams had to make due with some 5'9'' Canadian. You can't pad your stats in an era of parity like you could in a watered down league comprised of mostly North Americans.

Gretzky has said as much... there is WAY more talent out there today, it's not even comparable. And he deserves a lot of credit for this. The old guys grew the game tremendously. It's illogical to think their efforts haven't resulted in a talent boom, and yet some people that don't want to accept it.

The talent pool is NOT a static thing, not in a global, big-money sport like this.
And the league has also expanded right along with the influx of players from Europe so ultimately it's a wash: The average talent level per team has stayed roughly the same precisely because the league expanded by nine teams.

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02-23-2013, 01:12 PM
  #79
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Originally Posted by Dennis Bonvie View Post
You would have to disregard the numbers and awards and judge them by who was the better hockey player.

Its not hard to see Orr as being better as his game was great all over the ice, not just from the red line in.

Howe dominated offensively early in his career almost as much as Grtezky. He did it while also playing responsible defense and adding a physical aspect that was somewhat terrifying.

Mario is the most difficult, as you said. Like Gretzky, he played little defense. He played in the same era that Gretzky dominated. But Mario was still able to put up incredible production in the dead puck era while being old and sick and injuried. Gretzky's production slid as defense became more prevalent.
Honestly it's hard to see any player better at his game than Gretzky, and to disregard the numbers is a bit silly considering that the whole point of the game is to outscore your opponent. Gretzky wasn't physical but it didn't prevent him for being a master of takeaways, he wasn't the greatest defensive forward ever but still played almost every PK.

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02-23-2013, 01:50 PM
  #80
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Originally Posted by ot92s View Post
goal tending strategies/technique, shift length & equipment for gaolies and skaters are the only differences.

the talent level is about the same. you know, not counting mario and gretz (thats not fair to today's players)
Nonsense.

The US has nearly as many people playing hockey as Canada now, which wasn't nearly the case 30 years ago. The European nations (Sweden, Finland, Czech, etc.) are also better at producing elite talents now. Then you have nations that never produced elite talents that do now such as Austria (Vanek) and Slovenia (Kopitar).

Just look at the recent best vs. best tournaments such as the Olympics and World Juniors and you don't only see Canada and Russia vying for top spot anymore. The US, Sweden, Czech Republic are often right there with Canada and Russia. This reflects what's going on.

This all has a huge affect on the NHL and elite talent level.

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02-23-2013, 02:49 PM
  #81
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To me the argument that the field is too strong now for another Gretzky to come in the NHL was destroyed by a couple of things , such as Lemieux's 00-01 season , the fact that the supposely best players from this era got beat out of two Art Rosses by the Sedins (good players , but come on) , or even by athletes like Roger Federer/Tiger Woods completely destroying the field in their respective sport in the 2000s.Or is the field only better in hockey? That would be a ridiculous statement to make.

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02-23-2013, 02:57 PM
  #82
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
Prime Gretzky wouldn't have let Henrik Sedin even get close to him, let alone steal an Art Ross.
they also played in entirely different eras with the makeup of the NHL being entirely different as well.

Let's use your example of when Sid was 22 in 10 compared to Wayne age 22 season.

In 82-83 the NHL which Wayne played in had this breakdown of players that played in 40 or more games in a 21 team NHL

Canada 303
United States 43
Sweden 20
Finland 9
Germany 1
Russia 0
Czech 13

Here is Sid in 10 in a 30 team NHL

Canada 326
United States 113
Sweden 36
Finland 20
Germany 7
Russia 28
Czech 44

Denmark 3
Switzerland 1

Even if one assumes that all eras are equal with 9 more team in the NHL there are only 23 more players From Canada for Sid's NHL.

Clearly things were different for both players and this is only 1 example.

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02-23-2013, 03:11 PM
  #83
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Originally Posted by superroyain10 View Post
Even if we accept this as true, why use an absolute scale? What would be the point? If Crosby today is better than Gretzky only because Crosby played in the more modern-era, what is the point of comparing them? The newer player always wins!

When people mean better, they often mean greater. Which player was more accomplished, etc.
This is the problem, the new players absolutely has the possibility of being better but the older player also has a weaker pool to dominate in so it works both ways.

Also your line of thinking often gets applied to 06 guys who are "more accomplished" than guys playing in a 21 plus team league.

Hopefully more consideration will be given to these differences in future evaluations and projects.

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02-23-2013, 03:15 PM
  #84
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Originally Posted by SaintPatrick33 View Post
As I pointed out, the league hasn't been static either: It's expanded right along with the growth of the talent pool so that any growth in available talent has been mitigated.
The average talent level of each team isn't the same thing as the talent pool. Increasing the number of elite talents in the NHL makes it harder to win scoring titles regardless of how many teams there are. Of course when you look at how dominant Gretzky was compared to other Canadians, then apply a similar level of dominance compared to only the Canadians of today, it is clear that Gretzky wouldn't struggle to dominate scoring.

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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
they also played in entirely different eras with the makeup of the NHL being entirely different as well.

Let's use your example of when Sid was 22 in 10 compared to Wayne age 22 season.

In 82-83 the NHL which Wayne played in had this breakdown of players that played in 40 or more games in a 21 team NHL

Canada 303
United States 43
Sweden 20
Finland 9
Germany 1
Russia 0
Czech 13

Here is Sid in 10 in a 30 team NHL

Canada 326
United States 113
Sweden 36
Finland 20
Germany 7
Russia 28
Czech 44

Denmark 3
Switzerland 1

Even if one assumes that all eras are equal with 9 more team in the NHL there are only 23 more players From Canada for Sid's NHL.

Clearly things were different for both players and this is only 1 example.
That's hardly significant at all when Gretzky is blowing away the competition to a ridiculous degree. Take out the non-Canadians that Crosby competes against if you want and he still doesn't sniff Gretzky's level of dominance.

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02-23-2013, 03:19 PM
  #85
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Originally Posted by JackSlater View Post
The average talent level of each team isn't the same thing as the talent pool. Increasing the number of elite talents in the NHL makes it harder to win scoring titles regardless of how many teams there are. Of course when you look at how dominant Gretzky was compared to other Canadians, then apply a similar level of dominance compared to only the Canadians of today, it is clear that Gretzky wouldn't struggle to dominate scoring.

That's hardly significant at all when Gretzky is blowing away the competition to a ridiculous degree. Take out the non-Canadians that Crosby competes against if you want and he still doesn't sniff Gretzky's level of dominance.
The average talent per team is the effect the talent pool has on the league. The talent pool doesn't exist in a vacuum especially when the subject in question is play in a particular league.

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02-23-2013, 03:29 PM
  #86
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Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
There almost always is a thread once a week about Gretzky and how he would do in today's game. He would destroy the NHL talent today, no question about it. For starters, hockey IQ transcends eras. No one was smarter on the ice than Gretzky. Also, I know the less enlightened (and I don't mean that with disrespect) will say the NHL was less competitive then but if we look at top flight talent it looks like this:

1980s offensive stars - Bossy, Trottier, Hawerchuk, Savard, Stastny, Dionne, Messier, Kurri, Lemieux (eventually)

Current offensive stars - Crosby, Ovechkin, Malkin, Stamkos, Sedin, Sedin, Thornton


Call me crazy, but I don't think you can put the 1980s stars any worse than today's stars. It is more or less the same. A healthy Crosby lost the scoring title to Sedin in 2010. It is the equivalent of Gretzky losing it to Stastny. The best we saw Stastny do was 139 points. That year Gretzky had 212. He also routinely scored more goals than Bossy, sometimes by large margins. Bossy is better as of now than Stamkos. Crosby has never surpassed Stamkos in goals, they tied in 2010. As great of a talent as Malkin is he won both of his scoring titles by 3 and 12 points. That's nice, but Gretzky once won a scoring title by 79 points and it was his own teammate in Coffey who was about as good offensively as a prime Ovechkin, I think.

So hopefully people are seeing a trend here. We saw Lemieux win a scoring title with 60, 64 and 70 games played. That's good stuff. Gretzky would have won a scoring title once or twice in 45 games. Also, in the last year of Gretzky's true dominance - 1991 - he would have won the Art Ross after 66 games had he stopped playing. This may have been different without an injured Lemieux but at the same time this was Gretzky against the entire NHL and he wins a scoring title at 30 years old in 66 games. Incredible.

I don't think Gretzky is playing in 2013 and still tied with Thomas Vanek at 25 points for the scoring lead this late in the season. I think he has 40 by now, at least. Why is that? Because the one underrated thing about Gretzky is that he always kept the pedal to the metal. He worked extremely hard and never took a night off. I was watching the Pens/Panthers game tonight. Yeah Crosby and Malkin are the stars of today's game and we love watching them. They can surely have their "on" games where they rack up 4 points. But too often you see them have games like tonight. Nothing special. Gretzky just didn't do that very often. In his last dominant season in 1991 he had a 25 game scoring streak.

So not only does a player have to have the on-ice vision of Gretzky to come around again but he also needs to have the drive to be the best day in and day out. That's what makes someone like Gretzky who he is.
Lots of assumptions here as usual, but heck we all do that right.

I'll focus just on the 40 points compared to 25 for Vanek and Sid right now.

On which team does he accomplish that feat?

Wayne scored around 50% of his teams points at his peak (maybe slightly more). to ahve 40 points he needs to be on a team that has around 80 goals right now.

TB has 61, Pitt 60 and Chcicago 57.

Let's for argument sake take Sid out of the Pens lineup and put in Wayne.

Does anyone seriously see that team in 2013 under current conditions scoring 20 more goals at this point of the season right now?

I watch a lot of NHL games and think Wayne is the best player of all time but that is one circle that would be extremely difficult to square, close to impossible IMO.

Either you think too much of Wayne or too little of current players and the landscape of the NHL.

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02-23-2013, 03:31 PM
  #87
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
This is the problem, the new players absolutely has the possibility of being better but the older player also has a weaker pool to dominate in so it works both ways.

Also your line of thinking often gets applied to 06 guys who are "more accomplished" than guys playing in a 21 plus team league.

Hopefully more consideration will be given to these differences in future evaluations and projects.
And yet in the early 90's (90/91-93/94) when the League was never more packed with talent (from ALL Nations) jammed into much fewer teams than today...
All an already past his prime, with a major back issues after '91 Gretzky did was win 2 Art Ross (lost the other 2 to some guy named Lemieux) scoring 479 points in just 278 games (led all scorers during those 4 years).

Please, do us all a favour and take this tired old argument back to the proper thread where you still haven't even made your case there yet.

A prime Gretzky destroys the League in ANY Era. The only thing that changes is the actual raw amount he does it by.


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02-23-2013, 03:34 PM
  #88
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Honestly it's hard to see any player better at his game than Gretzky, and to disregard the numbers is a bit silly considering that the whole point of the game is to outscore your opponent. Gretzky wasn't physical but it didn't prevent him for being a master of takeaways, he wasn't the greatest defensive forward ever but still played almost every PK.
That can be accomplished by stopping goals as well as creating them. When Gretzky led the league in scoring with 130 points in 93/94, he was a -25. By far the worst number for an Art Ross trophy winner ever.

Mario holds the record for shorthanded goals in a season so playing on the PK really has nothing to do with defensive play for these guys. IN their era all the offensive stars played on the PK.

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02-23-2013, 03:36 PM
  #89
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A critical back, plus he had a LOT of hockey on his body at that time...playing since he was 19, long seasons + playoffs, getting more than 30 minutes a night very frequently....

Plus, a natural decline in his physical attributes. Goal-scorers tend to decline at that age anyways...

Gretzky also went to a less gifted team and was surrounded by less talent.
Waynes goal scoring dropped off quite a bit at age 23,24,25,26 depending on what kind of metric one uses.

The talent level on his teams might have been a bit different but not as great as you are indicating here.

We also don't have accurate MPG for the 80's either it's pure speculation.

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02-23-2013, 03:36 PM
  #90
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Originally Posted by Dennis Bonvie View Post
You would have to disregard the numbers and awards and judge them by who was the better hockey player.

Its not hard to see Orr as being better as his game was great all over the ice, not just from the red line in.

Howe dominated offensively early in his career almost as much as Grtezky. He did it while also playing responsible defense and adding a physical aspect that was somewhat terrifying.

Mario is the most difficult, as you said. Like Gretzky, he played little defense. He played in the same era that Gretzky dominated. But Mario was still able to put up incredible production in the dead puck era while being old and sick and injuried. Gretzky's production slid as defense became more prevalent.
Not really. Howe dominated offensively almost as much as Lemieux, but Gretzky was a big step above both of them - in terms of offensive domination of his peers, only.

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02-23-2013, 03:45 PM
  #91
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
Waynes goal scoring dropped off quite a bit at age 23,24,25,26 depending on what kind of metric one uses.

The talent level on his teams might have been a bit different but not as great as you are indicating here.

We also don't have accurate MPG for the 80's either it's pure speculation.
Another fallacy that was disproved in another thread.
His goals per game actually makes for quite a nice bell curve. The only SHARP drop off is after the '91 Canada Cup.
But by all mean, you go ahead and keep using the raw totals of his 64 game season in 87/88 and his 73 game season in 89/90 to manipulate a drop off that isn't actually there.

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02-23-2013, 03:46 PM
  #92
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It's NOT the same though, I don't even see how people can come to that conclusion. You go through a list of top players in the 80s and it's almost exclusively Canadians. 23 of the top 100 scorers from Gretzky's prime years (I picked 80-81 to 87-88 because it's the same length of time as the post-lockout era) are non-Canadian, just 3 in the top 20. HALF of the top 100 since 2005 are non-Canadian, 10 in the top 20. Nowadays, more often than not it's a non-Canadian winning the Art Ross, Hart and Vezina.

Look at the goalies. During Gretzky's prime, only ONE non-Canadian is in the top 20 winningest, since the lockout it's well under half. This year it's more like one-third.

How is it even logical to think, that with so many countries producing so much more talent and all of them coming to the NHL, that talent HASN'T increased? With so many kids playing hockey, with the system being so efficient now, with so much money in the industry, I'd say even Canada is producing more skill than ever... but it's so much harder for them to stand out. And none of them are going to put up Dale Hawerchuk numbers... even though plenty of them are more skilled.

And this talent is spread out. Every team has a good goalie, whereas before half the league's teams had to make due with some 5'9'' Canadian. You can't pad your stats in an era of parity like you could in a watered down league comprised of mostly North Americans.

Gretzky has said as much... there is WAY more talent out there today, it's not even comparable. And he deserves a lot of credit for this. The old guys grew the game tremendously. It's illogical to think their efforts haven't resulted in a talent boom, and yet some people that don't want to accept it.

The talent pool is NOT a static thing, not in a global, big-money sport like this.
Well, first of all you've built a bit of a straw man here. I believe I said the talent level is "about the same" or something to that effect. I didn't say it was definitely better or definitely worse.

So, you believe that the supply of NHL level talent has outpaced expansion. From what I observe I don't believe it has.

If you sit up close during an NHL game you'll see LOTS & LOTS of very sloppy play from the current crop of NHL players. It's a lack of talent. The pace of play is certainly different now compared to the 80's. I mean, a 1 min shift is practically unheard of now. If you're looking to diminish the accomplishments of the guys from the 80's I would start with how many minutes per game they logged. If you think there was a big difference in the talent level I would disagree.

I understand that I probably won't change your mind. Maybe the league will add ten more teams and be forced to go into Kazakhstan to find bodies to fill the rosters. Then some kid might tell you that this is evidence that the talent level is much better than in crosby's day. I guess you would have to agree.

Here's a question for you. I suspect the talent level of the original 6 era of the 50's until the late 60's was the highest ever, do you agree or do you suspect the highest talent level came in a different era?

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02-23-2013, 03:49 PM
  #93
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Originally Posted by ot92s View Post
goal tending strategies/technique, shift length & equipment for gaolies and skaters are the only differences.

the talent level is about the same. you know, not counting mario and gretz (thats not fair to today's players)

crosby reminds me of denis savard more than he does gretzky.

bigphil pretty much summed it up a pew posts ago.
Except thsoe statement are not backed up by any facts.

Savard top 10 finishes, i a 21 team league (1st 8 years)

Goals 9th
Assists 2,3,3,6,7
Points 3,3,6,7

Sid is in his 8th year, 3 injured years so what could have been) 30 team league.

Goals 1
assists 1,2,2,7,8
Points 1,1,2,3,6

Injuries aside Sid is closer to Wayne than Savard IMO.

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02-23-2013, 04:00 PM
  #94
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I would actually argue that the change in talent is as much a decrease in Canadian players as it is an increase in foreign talent.

And don't discredit the 87 Canada Cup. The Canadian went up against arguably the greatest non-Canadian team ever and Gretzky put up 2.33 PPG and Lemieux 2.00 PPG.
Are you somehow implying that Canadian talent has decreased in the last 10 years from where it was in the 80"s?

I would be very interested on hearing that theory or idea.

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02-23-2013, 04:02 PM
  #95
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Originally Posted by Dennis Bonvie View Post
You would have to disregard the numbers and awards and judge them by who was the better hockey player.

Its not hard to see Orr as being better as his game was great all over the ice, not just from the red line in.

Howe dominated offensively early in his career almost as much as Grtezky. He did it while also playing responsible defense and adding a physical aspect that was somewhat terrifying.

Mario is the most difficult, as you said. Like Gretzky, he played little defense. He played in the same era that Gretzky dominated. But Mario was still able to put up incredible production in the dead puck era while being old and sick and injuried. Gretzky's production slid as defense became more prevalent.
And I agree, which is why I said I can see arguments for any one of them individually to be above him, but not all 3. As I mentioned, the strongest arguments in favor of Howe are defense and longevity, both of which preclude Lemieux from the discussion. The strongest for Orr is all around game, which again precludes Lemieux, and peak dominance, which Gretzky has about equal to Orr, and both have over Howe IMO. I'd also say Gretzky has a strong edge on Lemieux there, unless we begin to go by era-adjusted PPG, when it becomes close. But this also credits Lemieux for many games (entire seasons even) worth of production when he didn't actually play.

If we try to pick Lemieux's prime seasons and say they were better though (a hard sell, IMO) then we can't really say Howe was better than Gretzky as well, since we are clearly disregarding longevity and consistancy and looking only at peak performance in select seasons where Gretzky dominates Howe very badly.

The only way to rank all 3 above Gretzky is if we disregard consistent application of these rules - we have to use longevity and defense only when comparing Gretzky and Howe, while ignoring longevity completely for Orr/Lemieux vs Gretzky. We have to ignore defense when comparing Gretzky and Lemieux, while valuing it enough to place Orr above him. We have to overlook injuries for Orr and Lemieux to look only at their peaks, while ignoring Gretzky's superior peak over Howe.

To do all these things at the same time just seems hypocritical and IMO shows a strong degree of bias. One may as well just say "I rate the other 3 above him because they could bench more", because that's really the only thing left. Its no coincidence that many who put Gretzky outside the top 3 also call him a runt or pipsqueak.

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02-23-2013, 04:07 PM
  #96
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
Except thsoe statement are not backed up by any facts.

Savard top 10 finishes, i a 21 team league (1st 8 years)

Goals 9th
Assists 2,3,3,6,7
Points 3,3,6,7

Sid is in his 8th year, 3 injured years so what could have been) 30 team league.

Goals 1
assists 1,2,2,7,8
Points 1,1,2,3,6

Injuries aside Sid is closer to Wayne than Savard IMO.
Heh, now try eliminating Gretzky, Lemieux and their lackey's from the equation and see where he ranks.

Savard Top 10 finishes
Goals 4
Assists 1,1,2,3,5
Points 1,2,3,5,5,8

Yep, pretty comparable really.

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02-23-2013, 04:09 PM
  #97
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And yet in the early 90's (90/91-93/94) when the League was never more packed with talent (from ALL Nations) jammed into much fewer teams than today...
All an already past his prime, with a major back issues after '91 Gretzky did was win 2 Art Ross (lost the other 2 to some guy named Lemieux) scoring 479 points in just 278 games (led all scorers during those 4 years).

Please, do us all a favour and take this tired old argument back to the proper thread where you still haven't even made your case there yet.

A prime Gretzky destroys the League in ANY Era. The only thing that changes is the actual raw amount he does it by.
I provided actual numbers of position players only, feel free to provide some numbers to back up your claim.

90-91 for instance has 3 guys from the US and one from Sweden in the top 20 in scoring, 11, 14,17 and 19th.

then there is the whole goal tending situation as well.

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02-23-2013, 04:12 PM
  #98
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We might but we won't know it.

No one will ever dominate the game like Gretzky because the game has reached its relative peak. Gretzky entered the game at a transitional age, when it was rapidly improving and was able to turn it on its head.

Now the game is far too good for someone to be so much better than anyone else.

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02-23-2013, 04:16 PM
  #99
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I provided actual numbers of position players only, feel free to provide some numbers to back up your claim.

90-91 for instance has 3 guys from the US and one from Sweden in the top 20 in scoring, 11, 14,17 and 19th.

then there is the whole goal tending situation as well.
Whether they were in the top 20 scoring or not matters not.
They WERE in the League now and boosted a 22-24 team League;s talent level by a crazy amount. Even more so in the 3 years that followed before the League went all expansion happy and, IMO, actually reverted back to 80's level talent per capita ratio's, which the League is just recently starting to overcome.

Yes I did notice that you only picked out the 90/91 season. How about going through the other 3 years I mentioned and see how your argument holds up?

And AGAIN, we're talking about a past his prime Gretzky with major back issues STILL dominating a more talented and tighter packed League.
At the end of the day you simply just can't get around this fact!


Last edited by Rhiessan71: 02-23-2013 at 04:23 PM.
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02-23-2013, 04:28 PM
  #100
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The average talent per team is the effect the talent pool has on the league. The talent pool doesn't exist in a vacuum especially when the subject in question is play in a particular league.
Not really. If the NHL expanded to 100 teams tomorrow, the average talent level would decrease dramatically but the talent pool would be unchanged. It wouldn't be any more or less difficult to win a scoring title, the scoring numbers would just go up for everyone.

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