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

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Old
02-26-2013, 07:34 PM
  #176
underslept
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I think we'll see players of that caliber, odds are we won't see a player who's that far ahead of the game again though.

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02-26-2013, 08:56 PM
  #177
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
The game probably changed less from the mid 30's-90 than it has from 90-now.

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02-27-2013, 01:41 PM
  #178
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He didn't have to you are right especially not with those stacked Oilers teams (relatively speaking to the rest of the league) and for a while in LA but that's more a reflection of the era than anything else. The bottom line no player could play that way today and get the same type of results in his team winning and that's the point that is being missed by some IMO.




Well the game hasn't really changed since they brought in forward passing the way you are describing it.

The game probably changed less from the mid 30's-90 than it has from 90-now.
I can assure you that's not true. Do you really believe that?

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02-27-2013, 02:20 PM
  #179
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No... we'll never see anyone like Gretz again. The leagues changed and every player has to be well rounded now. No matter how skilled a player is he'll be taken down a peg offensively to be more "well rounded". To be honest I think the game is so over coached at every level that even a young phenom will be nipped in the bud.

Even extending it past Gretzky... we'll never see another Lemieux, Bure, Coffey or Orr (if you think he didn't cheat a lot you're sadly mistaken) again. Look at Ovy. The numbers he was putting up was insane but instead of building around him the Caps wanted him to change his game and become more of a team player. Well the Caps got what they wished for. Ovy gets blamed for everything while McPhee sits around twirling his neckerchief.

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02-27-2013, 02:22 PM
  #180
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No... we'll never see anyone like Gretz again. The leagues changed and every player has to be well rounded now. No matter how skilled a player is he'll be taken down a peg offensively to be more "well rounded". To be honest I think the game is so over coached at every level that even a young phenom will be nipped in the bud.

Even extending it past Gretzky... we'll never see another Lemieux, Bure, Coffey or Orr (if you think he didn't cheat a lot you're sadly mistaken) again. Look at Ovy. The numbers he was putting up was insane but instead of building around him the Caps wanted him to change his game and become more of a team player. Well the Caps got what they wished for. Ovy gets blamed for everything while McPhee sits around twirling his neckerchief.

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02-27-2013, 04:25 PM
  #181
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I think we'll see players of that caliber, odds are we won't see a player who's that far ahead of the game again though.
Considering we've seen it once in 100 years, you are probably right. I think that's the idea people get is that something must be wrong with the NHL in the 1980s and 1990s if someone could dominate it so well. Not true. These players just don't come around very often. I don't know if any of us alive will see it or not but I do believe it CAN happen.

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No... we'll never see anyone like Gretz again. The leagues changed and every player has to be well rounded now. No matter how skilled a player is he'll be taken down a peg offensively to be more "well rounded". To be honest I think the game is so over coached at every level that even a young phenom will be nipped in the bud.

Even extending it past Gretzky... we'll never see another Lemieux, Bure, Coffey or Orr (if you think he didn't cheat a lot you're sadly mistaken) again. Look at Ovy. The numbers he was putting up was insane but instead of building around him the Caps wanted him to change his game and become more of a team player. Well the Caps got what they wished for. Ovy gets blamed for everything while McPhee sits around twirling his neckerchief.
I think that was Washington's fault in the first place. This is a franchise that has only gotten to the Cup final once in 40 years of existance. They panicked, and instead of looking at the 2010 Caps who were dominant offensively and building on that they did a knee jerk thing and sucked the offensive life out of that team hoping that they could win with defense. Bad coaching and bad management. Sather was patient with the Oilers. Even after 1982. He knew what he had and knew it was only a matter of time before they exploded. Remember, there were lots of critics telling him to blow up the Oilers at that time and start over. Maybe the Caps listened to the media too much, who knows?

But I think the difference lies in the fact that a 2010 Ovechkin, while a VERY dangerous player, still doesn't have the clout of a 1982 or 1983 Gretzky who hadn't won yet either but was on the verge. I think if a player came along as good as Gretzky or Lemieux again even the Ken Hitchcock's of the world would let him do his own thing knowing he would win them more games that way.

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02-27-2013, 05:43 PM
  #182
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Considering we've seen it once in 100 years, you are probably right. I think that's the idea people get is that something must be wrong with the NHL in the 1980s and 1990s if someone could dominate it so well. Not true. These players just don't come around very often. I don't know if any of us alive will see it or not but I do believe it CAN happen.



I think that was Washington's fault in the first place. This is a franchise that has only gotten to the Cup final once in 40 years of existance. They panicked, and instead of looking at the 2010 Caps who were dominant offensively and building on that they did a knee jerk thing and sucked the offensive life out of that team hoping that they could win with defense. Bad coaching and bad management. Sather was patient with the Oilers. Even after 1982. He knew what he had and knew it was only a matter of time before they exploded. Remember, there were lots of critics telling him to blow up the Oilers at that time and start over. Maybe the Caps listened to the media too much, who knows?

But I think the difference lies in the fact that a 2010 Ovechkin, while a VERY dangerous player, still doesn't have the clout of a 1982 or 1983 Gretzky who hadn't won yet either but was on the verge. I think if a player came along as good as Gretzky or Lemieux again even the Ken Hitchcock's of the world would let him do his own thing knowing he would win them more games that way.
Like who?

In 1982, the Oilers had been in the NHL 3 years and had just had a 111 point season, scoring a record 417 goals and they were the youngest team in the league.

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02-27-2013, 05:59 PM
  #183
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No... we'll never see anyone like Gretz again... To be honest I think the game is so over coached at every level that even a young phenom will be nipped in the bud.
Yes I completely agree, almost impossible to not be cynical about it. However, and Im sure you yourself hope your wrong, I hold out hope, optimism. For Gretzky it was the perfect storm, the game itself in flux, arriving at exactly the right place and time. A Phenom. Back in the day criticised as being too small, lithe', cant possibly cut it when the going gets rough & tumble. We might not be alive to see it during our lifetimes, but Im sure they'll come, more Wunderkinds. It would certainly hasten matters if not outright behoove the NHL itself to do something about it, act responsibly as the custodians of the game in turning back the clock some in order to pay it forward. Opening up the game again to individual creativity which in turn filters on down through the ranks but hey, what do we know? Just Walkin Wallets.

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02-27-2013, 11:20 PM
  #184
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Originally Posted by Dennis Bonvie View Post
Like who?

In 1982, the Oilers had been in the NHL 3 years and had just had a 111 point season, scoring a record 417 goals and they were the youngest team in the league.
The nickname surrounding that team was "Weak Kneed Wimps." It was sort of a catchphrase at that time. Many critics believed that, sure, the Oilers could score but they couldn't win. This was in the middle of an Islander dynasty and we were seeing a better rounded team acheiving greatness and the Oilers were just scoring and choking. I've seen an interview where Sather claimed that the media was getting on his case. Gretzky said in the same interview (I think it was around 1993) that this is where you saw Sather's patience come through. Honestly, not a lot of coaches/GMs would ignore the media like that.

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02-27-2013, 11:34 PM
  #185
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Originally Posted by Dennis Bonvie View Post
Like who?

In 1982, the Oilers had been in the NHL 3 years and had just had a 111 point season, scoring a record 417 goals and they were the youngest team in the league.
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The nickname surrounding that team was "Weak Kneed Wimps." It was sort of a catchphrase at that time. Many critics believed that, sure, the Oilers could score but they couldn't win. This was in the middle of an Islander dynasty and we were seeing a better rounded team acheiving greatness and the Oilers were just scoring and choking. I've seen an interview where Sather claimed that the media was getting on his case. Gretzky said in the same interview (I think it was around 1993) that this is where you saw Sather's patience come through. Honestly, not a lot of coaches/GMs would ignore the media like that.
Phil, Dennis has it right, the Oilers were such a young team in 82 and finished 2nd in the standings and got upset by LA in the first round.

Exactly what was Sather supposed to blow up?

The top 5 scorers on that team were aged 20-21, Fuhr was 19, it wasn't like there was a proven track record of futility there.

Sure the team had it's critics but any of them suggesting that they be blown up would ahve been laughed at.

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02-28-2013, 05:05 PM
  #186
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Phil, Dennis has it right, the Oilers were such a young team in 82 and finished 2nd in the standings and got upset by LA in the first round.

Exactly what was Sather supposed to blow up?

The top 5 scorers on that team were aged 20-21, Fuhr was 19, it wasn't like there was a proven track record of futility there.

Sure the team had it's critics but any of them suggesting that they be blown up would ahve been laughed at.
I think we just have forgotten that because it was so long ago now. I don't know about the term "blow up" the team but there was definitely pressure on Sather to at least change the style of the Oilers. For some reason I can't find a video of that interview on Youtube. Anyway, the way the Oilers played was a purely offensive game. The Islanders were in the middle of their dynasty and the idea was that Gretzky and the Oilers could score and such but they couldn't win with that style. The Islanders had a well rounded team that no one questioned. Gretzky was constantly berated at that time as a guy who could score but couldn't win. So that mindset did exist around the Oilers at that time.

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02-28-2013, 09:02 PM
  #187
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We already have. Lemieux was a better hockey player than Gretzky. He sure as hell didn't have the career that Wayne had for sure, but he was bigger, stronger, had puck handling skills exponentially better, and was at least in Wayne's league in terms of playmaking. Stats don't always indicate who was the better player.

While there will be better players, I don't see the best player recording stats at a level Wayne did anymore as opposed to his peers or in general. That was the perfect storm.





.

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02-28-2013, 09:59 PM
  #188
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Lemieux was a better hockey player than Gretzky.
I don't think there's any consensus that that's true.

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03-01-2013, 02:10 PM
  #189
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We already have. Lemieux was a better hockey player than Gretzky. He sure as hell didn't have the career that Wayne had for sure, but he was bigger, stronger, had puck handling skills exponentially better, and was at least in Wayne's league in terms of playmaking. Stats don't always indicate who was the better player.

While there will be better players, I don't see the best player recording stats at a level Wayne did anymore as opposed to his peers or in general. That was the perfect storm.





.
Being bigger and stronger doesnt make you better or Semenko would have been better too. Wayne was the weakest Oiler but still clearly the best.

Mario may have been a superior stick handler but I wouldnt say it was definite. Afterall Gretzky did beat him at the allstar game puck control derby. And imho while Lemieux was a great playmaker Gretzky was clearly way better. You can dismiss stats all you like but Gretzky has the 7 highest assist totals in history and is tied with Mario for 8th. Wayne led the league in assists 16 times. The gap between their playmaking skills was clearly much larger than any supposed advantages Mario's size or strength were to have given him.

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03-01-2013, 03:05 PM
  #190
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I think that is one the biggest myths around - that Gretzky wasn't a great stick handler. He was, imo, the best. He rarely lost the puck in the offensive zone. He always found an open man and when he had to he could beat you one on one with that sidestep move. Lemieux looked flashier because he would go through guys, which is a great skill, but in order to have seasons of 163 assists you have to be able to hold onto the puck long enough to find the open man. Gretzky was the most patient player in the history of the game and that comes from the confidence of being able to hold onto the puck.

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03-01-2013, 03:14 PM
  #191
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I don't think there's any consensus that that's true.
... ah, no, I dont think there is nor would there be, that "Mario Lemieux was a "better hockey player than Wayne Gretzky" general consensus of agreement. Lemieux was far more earthbound, temporal, conscious, proto-typical like Beliveau but better than Big Jean from Centre into the Crease. Beyond dangerous, hard to handle, rangy. Gretzky on the other hand, well, he played sub-consciously, beyond the realms of any other forwards imagination, comprehension. His deceptions subtle, whereas Lemieux's were a lot more obvious & pronounced. Wayne a lot faster with the hands & stick, blades, superior vision in his prime. His smaller size was actually an advantage over Lemieux's on several levels. Not running down Mario here, depending on what kind of team you might be compiling, I just might take him over Gretzky depending on complimentary player personnel & Coaching.

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03-01-2013, 03:20 PM
  #192
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To the OP, we already have and his name is Mario Lemieux. I'd take Prime Mario over Prime Gretzky in any era. Mario would have murdered the early 80s in his prime. (Lemieux's prime was the late 80s).

Lemieux had a better career PPG, before he ruined in with the final years of his career, when he was basically being pushed around the ice on a wheel chair. Sad that his Prime years of his career were ruined.


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03-01-2013, 03:39 PM
  #193
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To the OP, we already have and his name is Mario Lemieux. I'd take Prime Mario over Prime Gretzky in any era. Mario would have murdered the early 80s in his prime. (Lemieux's prime was the late 80s).
Then how come Wayne destroyed Mario in PPG average in 1987-1988 when both were in their prime? If Mario would have "murdered" Wayne in the early 80s, then why couldn't he do it in 1988?

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03-01-2013, 03:43 PM
  #194
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To the OP, we already have and his name is Mario Lemieux. I'd take Prime Mario over Prime Gretzky in any era. Mario would have murdered the early 80s in his prime. (Lemieux's prime was the late 80s).
Mario started in the NHL in 1984. What was so different in 1982 compared to Mario's best statistical season in 1989? I'm a little perplexed at that statement.

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We already have. Lemieux was a better hockey player than Gretzky. He sure as hell didn't have the career that Wayne had for sure, but he was bigger, stronger, had puck handling skills exponentially better, and was at least in Wayne's league in terms of playmaking. Stats don't always indicate who was the better player.

While there will be better players, I don't see the best player recording stats at a level Wayne did anymore as opposed to his peers or in general. That was the perfect storm.
.
Will there be better players? In 100 years there hasn't been. Mario was as close as we've seen. Not saying anything about his playmaking skills because they were top notch but Gretzky had 122 assists as late as 1991 when the next best King (Robitaille) had 91.........points. No Jari Kurri to snap home the perfect pass, it didn't matter. Gretzky had his 4th highest assist total without the help of a ton of Hall of Famers. I don't think there is any argument that Gretzky is unseated or even equalled as a playmaker.

I'd always take Gretzky on my team because he never took a night off. He always kept coming at you and pumping the goals in. He also never seemed to get thrown off his game. Mario could get thrown off his game the odd time and get frustrated. When did we really see this happen to Gretzky?

So yeah, I want Gretzky on my team.

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03-01-2013, 07:48 PM
  #195
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To the OP, we already have and his name is Mario Lemieux. I'd take Prime Mario over Prime Gretzky in any era. Mario would have murdered the early 80s in his prime. (Lemieux's prime was the late 80s).

Lemieux had a better career PPG, before he ruined in with the final years of his career, when he was basically being pushed around the ice on a wheel chair. Sad that his Prime years of his career were ruined.
Mario never had a higher PPG average after the same number games played at ANY POINT in his career. In fact, after 12 seasons (the same number of seasons Lemieux played when he retired the first time), Gretzky MURDERS Lemieux in PPG average. I hate to use this phrase, but it really isn't close.

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03-01-2013, 09:13 PM
  #196
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Then how come Wayne destroyed Mario in PPG average in 1987-1988 when both were in their prime? If Mario would have "murdered" Wayne in the early 80s, then why couldn't he do it in 1988?
If you take the 87-88, 88-89, 89-90 seasons... Lemieux PPG>>>>>>>>>>Gretzky's.

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03-01-2013, 09:21 PM
  #197
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If you take the 87-88, 88-89, 89-90 seasons... Lemieux PPG>>>>>>>>>>Gretzky's.
Anybody can cherrypick seasons.

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03-01-2013, 10:38 PM
  #198
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If you take the 87-88, 88-89, 89-90 seasons... Lemieux PPG>>>>>>>>>>Gretzky's.
You still haven't answered the question. How did Wayne destroy Mario in PPG average in 1987-88 while they were both in their primes if Mario would so unequivocally destroy Wayne in the early 80s? Going by your line of thinking, Wayne should not have even come close once, let alone destroy Mario in his prime!

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03-02-2013, 12:04 AM
  #199
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If you take the 87-88, 88-89, 89-90 seasons... Lemieux PPG>>>>>>>>>>Gretzky's.
Hum look again for the 87-88 season, you might be surprised...

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03-02-2013, 12:09 AM
  #200
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Will there be better players? In 100 years there hasn't been. Mario was as close as we've seen.
When Tavares scored 45 goals at 15, then 72 the year after, there were rumblings of "thenextone". Connor McDavid is playing incredibly for his age and there's some 14 year old who's got 180pts out west, name escapes me. The world media will latch on to these guys and the pressure to perform will certainly hurt them - so it will be much harder (mentally) for a player now.

But Gretzky thought the game so far ahead of other superstars that is just unrealistic to expect that again, along with the competitiveness, the pure love and passion for the game, elusive skating and quickness, health and longevity....I truly hope someone can come close to that but I don't expect it.

Crosby is the best player I've seen since Mario.

I'd say Crosby was as far from Mario as Mario was to 99.

I hope I'm alive to see someone come close.

Like Sid, Tavares and will make some Gretzky-like plays, eyes behind his head, tremendous love for the game, work ethic, drive for improvement....but what Tavares does every 5 games, Gretzky would do in one game. For 20 years straight. Against the best in the world too.

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