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NYR Top 10 Centers of All-Time (Preliminary Top 20 List Due!)

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Old
04-11-2013, 08:06 AM
  #76
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OT, but I'm pretty sure Raleigh died not too long ago.

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Old
04-11-2013, 11:05 AM
  #77
Crease
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ATD Bios

Our fellow posters did a fantastic job putting together biographies of some of the all-time greats for the ATD project. Here are the ones for some of the Rangers centers we're evaluating:

Frank Boucher
Neil Colville
Phil Goyette
Camille Henry
Edgar Laprade
Mark Messier
Buddy O'Connor
Jean Ratelle
Clint Smith
Red Sullivan
Phil Watson

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Old
04-11-2013, 12:14 PM
  #78
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Laprade's nickname was beaver. That immediately takes him off my top 10 list.

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Old
04-11-2013, 12:29 PM
  #79
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Frank Boucher is #1 on this list, and it is not even remotely close. Here, an updated Boucher bio:

http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/sh...&postcount=260

Frank Boucher was the original Rangers playoff hero. You'll see in the link above that he was being dicussed as possibly the greatest playoff performer in NHL history in 1933 as the Bread Line Rangers were on their way to their 2nd Cup win. Boucher was just as good a scorer as Bill Cook (they literally scored the exact same number of points over their ten peak seasons in blue), and was a great two-way player. Among many other great achievements, Frank Boucher scored 4 of the 5 Rangers goals in the 1928 Cup finals, which the Blueshirts won in an incredibly tight series over the Montreal Maroons (this was the year Lester Patrick played goal for one game in the finals). It is arguably the greatest playoff performance by any player in NHL history. In a very tight-checking era, Boucher scored 10 points in those playoffs (and 4 of 5 goals in the finals) when the #2 scorer in that playoff season (his linemate Bill Cook) had 5 points.

Frank Boucher is a Steve Yzerman level player in the history of hockey. He is the greatest Ranger center without the slightest doubt.

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Old
04-11-2013, 01:03 PM
  #80
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Many historians have Messier at or above Yzerman. Granted we're looking at accomplishments as a NYR only, and Messier is ranked above or near Yzerman on all-time NHL lists for what he accomplished in Edmonton as well. Boucher did it all as a Ranger.

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Old
04-11-2013, 01:04 PM
  #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crease View Post
Sturm, if Boucher is on Yzerman's level, then where is Messier? Many historians have Messier at or above that.
Messier's whole career might be above Yzerman and Boucher's, but Messier's Rangers career isn't.

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04-11-2013, 01:11 PM
  #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg02 View Post
Messier's whole career might be above Yzerman and Boucher's, but Messier's Rangers career isn't.
My edit beat you.

Anyone wanna throw out some names they're considering for spots 10-20? I'm having trouble figuring out where to begin there.

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Old
04-11-2013, 01:52 PM
  #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crease View Post
Many historians have Messier at or above Yzerman. Granted we're looking at accomplishments as a NYR only, and Messier is ranked above or near Yzerman on all-time NHL lists for what he accomplished in Edmonton as well. Boucher did it all as a Ranger.
I think you've got it right. I would choose Messier above Boucher, myself, for his whole career (though it's a lot closer than many modern fans think), but just considering years as a Ranger, it's Boucher in a walk.

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04-11-2013, 02:04 PM
  #84
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I foresee Messier vs Ratelle being an interesting discussion in Round 2. Still struggling on the back end of my top 20 right now. It's like choosing your favorite method of pulling teeth.

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Old
04-12-2013, 02:51 PM
  #85
Rob Scuderi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crease View Post
Our fellow posters did a fantastic job putting together biographies of some of the all-time greats for the ATD project. Here are the ones for some of the Rangers centers we're evaluating:

Frank Boucher
Neil Colville
Phil Goyette
Camille Henry
Edgar Laprade
Mark Messier
Buddy O'Connor
Jean Ratelle
Clint Smith
Red Sullivan
Phil Watson
Here are the 2013 updates to some of those bios. Sturm already posted Boucher, and TDMM linked his 2013 bio of Clint Smith back a page.

Neil Colville
Phil Goyette
Mark Messier

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Old
04-12-2013, 03:33 PM
  #86
CM Lundqvist
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crease View Post
Major Awards won as Rangers:

Hart
O'Connor
Messier

Lady Byng
Boucher (7x)
Smith
Laprade
Henry
Ratelle
Gretzky

Calder
Laprade

Masterton
Ratelle

Ted Lindsay
Ratelle
Messier

The Rocket was first awarded in the late 80s. Anyone on our list lead the NHL in goals prior to then?
You're missing Leetch on the Calder. Unless you're just counting centers?

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Old
04-12-2013, 03:52 PM
  #87
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Originally Posted by CM Lundqvist View Post
You're missing Leetch on the Calder. Unless you're just counting centers?
He is just counting centers.

See: Thread title. And... the rest of the thread.

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Old
04-12-2013, 04:32 PM
  #88
Ratelleitlikeitis
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Jean won two lady byngs, '72 and '76

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Old
04-12-2013, 04:37 PM
  #89
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Originally Posted by Crease View Post
Goyette seems like a good darkhorse candidate for the top 10.

Slick playmaker who spent the middle years of his career with the Rangers. Four of the six he was top 10 in the NHL in assists. Twice top ten in points. You're right though, complete non-factor in the playoffs.

According to this bio, Goyette was pivot between Don Marshall and Bob Nevin. Looks like both their numbers dipped dramatically in 1969/70 after Goyette was picked up by St. Louis (where he coincidently had his career year).
You've pretty much nailed it.
Hazy recollection to my earliest years as Ranger fan.
Thin, tall, a very poor man's Ratelle as to a passer, which was still pretty good for setups. Not much of a scorer, career year w/St. Lou.

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Old
04-12-2013, 05:05 PM
  #90
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Originally Posted by Ratelleitlikeitis View Post
Jean won two lady byngs, '72 and '76
For this we are only considering what the players did during their careers with the Rangers. For the '76 lady byng he was on the Bruins.

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Old
04-12-2013, 07:43 PM
  #91
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Ratelle is still the boss of the list in my books. Always felt confident with the depth of Jean, Walt and Stemmer in the early 70s. On the side, Duguay's hair has to be worth some consideration. Man he had flow!

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Old
04-12-2013, 08:10 PM
  #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg02 View Post

Shouldn't be top 10
Stemkowski
Nemchinov
Nedved
Popein
Dubinsky
Rogers
Betts
Boyle
Drury
Anisimov
Why no love for Mike Rogers? How many Ranger centers have scored over 100 points in a season?

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Old
04-12-2013, 08:35 PM
  #93
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Why no love for Mike Rogers? How many Ranger centers have scored over 100 points in a season?
He and Pavelich have almost identical stats, if you consider one you really have to consider the other

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Old
04-12-2013, 08:49 PM
  #94
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And this is why I posted my groupings

Don't really know anything about Rogers, but I will look into him.

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Old
04-14-2013, 10:10 AM
  #95
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Any info on Pavelich and Rogers? Both have very similar stats playing at the same time. Did anyone on here see them live?
Both Rogers and Pavelich aren't getting enough respect here. I watched both play.
Similar in many ways. Both very good on their skates, creative hockey players who would absolutely thrive in todays NHL. Similar size wise both around 5'9". Played together for a couple of seasons - however at this point Mike was finishing up his career.

Pavelich was the better playmaker while Rogers was a better finisher. If I remember correctly Pavelich was never drafted and after the Olympics actually spent a season or two in Europe. He was brought over by Herb Brooks and instantly became a fan favorite. Brooks teams played a puck control, skating game and Pavelich was a natural for that. For 4 seasons Mark put up some very nice stats and was one of the better centerman in the league. After Brooks left and Sator took over he basically drove Pavelich out of the league. Too bad because Pavelich had the talent to be a 10 year guy in the NHL.

Rogers, on the other hand, is one of those guys who spent many seasons in the WHA (almost 10 seasons or something like that) before it merged with the NHL. He was on the Whalers and was actually a pretty big scorer for them - he had a couple 50 goal seasons if I recall correctly. By the time he got to the Rangers he was in his 30's and winding down his career. His first season he was great, after that he kinda wound down.

Both of these guys deserve consideration in the 7-10 slot. Better then Nedved, Nemchinov or some of the other guys mentioned here previously.

Obviously the top 4 spots gotta be Ratelle, Mess, Boucher and Tkachuk.

Also, don't forget Espo. I know alot of people hate that trade (and they should, it was horrible). However, Espo did have 3 or 4 very good seasons for the Rangers. Given the fact that Boyle is on the list Espo, during his time as a Ranger, was about 100 times better!

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Old
04-14-2013, 07:54 PM
  #96
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Rangers top 10 centers in order in my opinion.

1. Mark Messier
2. Andy Bathgate
3. Jean Ratelle
4. Walt Tkaczuk
5. Wayne Gretzky
6. Phil Esposito
7. Ron Duguay
8. Frank Boucher
9. Eric Lindros
10. Bernie Nicholls

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Old
04-15-2013, 06:55 AM
  #97
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GJ, Bathgate was primarily a RW for the Rangers. Also, Lindros and Nicholls are not eligible (yet, exceptions can be argued for) due to short tenure. Just some things to keep in mind if you wish to submit a 1-20 list and participate in the voting.

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Old
04-15-2013, 07:47 AM
  #98
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GJ, Bathgate was primarily a RW for the Rangers. Also, Lindros and Nicholls are not eligible (yet, exceptions can be argued for) due to short tenure. Just some things to keep in mind if you wish to submit a 1-20 list and participate in the voting.
Are you going with 3 full seasons I assume? Nicholls played for the Rangers in 3 seasons (granted one was half way through and the final one was only 1 game)

Any reason we are going with 3 seasons? Pat Lafontaine really impressed me when he was here before we killed him.

Didn't know Bathgate played RW, I would have sworn he was a center. Thanks for the info.

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Old
04-15-2013, 08:04 AM
  #99
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Are you going with 3 full seasons I assume? Nicholls played for the Rangers in 3 seasons (granted one was half way through and the final one was only 1 game)

Any reason we are going with 3 seasons? Pat Lafontaine really impressed me when he was here before we killed him.

Didn't know Bathgate played RW, I would have sworn he was a center. Thanks for the info.
We originally decided to open the door to any player who played center for at least 75% of a minimum 4 seasons. Exceptions were made for Gretzky and Nilsson. Gretzky played three very-high level seasons for the Rangers. Nilsson played 3+ before his career was cut down by injuries.

I'd be happy to add Lindros and Nicholls to the list if you think they deserve consideration. I certainly don't want to preclude someone from arguing in favor of a player before the voting rounds begin. If the consensus is that a player with 2 very strong seasons is more worthy of being on a franchise's all-time list than a player with 5 or 6 above average seasons, then so be it. That's what the voting process is for. What are other people's thoughts on this?


Last edited by Crease: 04-15-2013 at 08:11 AM.
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Old
04-15-2013, 11:28 AM
  #100
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After Messier, Ratelle, Boucher, and Espo it's really hard for me to fill out a list. If I consider Gretzky worthy (which I do) Lindros also might have an argument because he was pretty good for his first 2 seasons with us.

Also, good lord this is a weak position for us. You never really think about it until you try to make a list.

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