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Gilbert Perreault - Underrated?

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Old
02-21-2012, 05:48 AM
  #26
JetsAlternate
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Perreault showed up at #5 on TSN's "most skilled players of all time" list last year -- only behind Kovalev, Orr, Lemieux and Gretzky. This is all with testimony from Wayne Gretzky, Brett Hull, Brendan Shanahan, Darryl Sittler, and Dale Hawerchuk.

Hull called him a "mixture of Savard and Bure" as well as a great skater; his skating was "ahead of his time" like Orr, and he had moves like Savard. He was one of Hull's favorites as a kid. Shanahan called him "big and strong and sort of like Mario Lemieux before there was Mario Lemieux." Gretzky talks about his speed and "extra gear" that not a lot of other guys had.

Sittler said he could start from behind his own net, use his shiftiness to go through the whole opposition and score coast-to-coast. Hawerchuk, meanwhile, credits him for making a lot of defenseman look silly with his lateral movement, as they would start swimming for the puck. Rick Jeanneret agrees his side-to-side ability was extraordinary.

Pierre McGuire's assessment: Speed, terrific hands, great balance, shiftiness, and strength with the puck. Tremendous acceleration as well. With all these qualities, he could turn defensemen inside-out.

6:10


The total package, and vastly underrated. He went first overall that year. Canucks fans look back and wonder what could have been if the roulette wheel had given them that pick.


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02-21-2012, 06:44 AM
  #27
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Hey I'm not even gonna knock the playoffs, I'm not one of those guys, hell I've defended Ratelle quite vigorously on this forum.

But if you hear the laurels, if you see what JetsAlternate posted, you'd be shocked that Perreault never won an Art Ross (not even a runner-up finish), never won a Hart, never finished top 5 in goals, no 1st team All-Star spots. That's why he's not Marino - Marino owned the NFL stat book for passing until very recently.

And Robert, Martin and Gare aren't quite Hall of Famers, no, but neither are Taylor and Simmer. Of course, around these parts you mention the word Dionne and "but playoffs" is an instant response, but I'm talking regular season here, where 90% of a career plays out. Dionne beat Perreault out for that 1st All-Star team spot in 1977 and Dionne was on the barely over .500 Kings not the 100+ point Sabres. The very Bobby Clarke beat out Perreault in 1976.

Now most people will have Dionne and Clarke pretty easily over Perreault on an all-time list, but then neither Dionne or Clarke are usually given the flowery descriptions Perreault gets or feature on "top skilled players" lists. They were the better players, but probably not the more skilled players and that hints at Perreault's skill maybe not translating to success as well as it has in the cases of several other players and that's what's meant by effectiveness.

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02-21-2012, 09:54 AM
  #28
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Originally Posted by TheMoreYouKnow View Post
Hey I'm not even gonna knock the playoffs, I'm not one of those guys, hell I've defended Ratelle quite vigorously on this forum.

But if you hear the laurels, if you see what JetsAlternate posted, you'd be shocked that Perreault never won an Art Ross (not even a runner-up finish), never won a Hart, never finished top 5 in goals, no 1st team All-Star spots. That's why he's not Marino - Marino owned the NFL stat book for passing until very recently.

And Robert, Martin and Gare aren't quite Hall of Famers, no, but neither are Taylor and Simmer. Of course, around these parts you mention the word Dionne and "but playoffs" is an instant response, but I'm talking regular season here, where 90% of a career plays out. Dionne beat Perreault out for that 1st All-Star team spot in 1977 and Dionne was on the barely over .500 Kings not the 100+ point Sabres. The very Bobby Clarke beat out Perreault in 1976.

Now most people will have Dionne and Clarke pretty easily over Perreault on an all-time list, but then neither Dionne or Clarke are usually given the flowery descriptions Perreault gets or feature on "top skilled players" lists. They were the better players, but probably not the more skilled players and that hints at Perreault's skill maybe not translating to success as well as it has in the cases of several other players and that's what's meant by effectiveness.
And, yet, there Gil is, at No. 13 all-time in PPG (1.11) among those with at least 1,000 regular season games played (No. 23 if you include everyone, and 11 spots ahead of Clarke). His 1.14 PPG in the playoffs is No. 11 all-time among everyone (no minimum number of games played), with Dionne and Clarke well outside the Top-50. For such an "ineffective" player, care to explain how Gil's incredible level of production came to be?

BTW, smooth of you to omit two HHOFers Dionne skated alongside: Alex Delvecchio and Luc Robitaille.

Again, Gil managed to become one of the most productive point producers of all time despite always being surrounded by a supporting cast that was inferior to those that surrounded his contemporaries, thus making him exceptionally "effective." Minus parts of two seasons with a geriatric Tim Horton, Gil never played with another HHOFer at any other point in his 17-season career, making his totals and PPG look all the more impressive. He never played alongside elite talent. He WAS the elite talent.


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02-21-2012, 10:25 AM
  #30
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Will be interesting where he ends up on the 'Top Forward' list.

Correct me if I mixed something up here but I think I've seen some poster (70slord?) made an argument that in fact he is comparable to Alfredsson, which kind of shocked me.

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02-21-2012, 11:16 AM
  #31
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I always liked Perreault and have to agree that the guy was under-rated. Definitely one of the best players to never win the Cup.

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02-21-2012, 12:00 PM
  #32
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BTW, smooth of you to omit two HHOFers Dionne skated alongside: Alex Delvecchio and Luc Robitaille.
Um, I mention Taylor and Simmer because those were his main linemates on the Triple Crown line when he racked up his best seasons and all his awards and All-Star spots. Delvecchio was what 40 by the time a young Dionne played with him for a few years and he played with rookie Robitaille in his last year as a King. Nobody talks about Delvecchio or Robitaille when discussing Dionne's career achievements because in fact it would be rather dishonest to pretend those two players had anything to do with Dionne's prowess.

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02-21-2012, 03:52 PM
  #33
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There's far more to winning championships than what us fans on the outside could possibly know. First off, there's 20 guys on a roster, not one. Take in to account that the one player isn't on the ice for 60 minutes, good fortune or lack there of, coaching, goaltending, luck or lack there of, and a million other circumstances play a role. So it's kind of ignorant for anyone on the outside to look at a player that has never won a championship and make an automatic assumption without truly knowing the circumstances.

There are those that have great showings and are heralded because of it, but they also had a ton of support and everything else going for them, but let's give them credit because they still stepped up and did what they did. Then there are those who have had the showings, but everything else it takes for a TEAM to win just hasn't fallen in place. It's not necessarily that they COULDN'T win, but just that they DIDN'T win. Those are two very different things.

Jim Paek won his second Cup 9 years before Ray Bourque hoisted his one and only. Go from there.


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02-21-2012, 04:00 PM
  #34
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He was the best player on the '81 Canada Cup team until he got injured in the round robin (against Sweden?).

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02-21-2012, 04:09 PM
  #35
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As Nalyd said, his numbers are really nothing special in comparison to his all-time reputation.

The small Buffalo rink seems to have had an effect. I remember once we tried to accommodate for that and then re-run Perreault's seasonal and career numbers. He looked better, but still not at the level that would match his reputation with the over-40 crowd.

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02-21-2012, 04:56 PM
  #36
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Perreault did have Richard Martin. We forget about Martin because he only played 10 seasons, but his early retirement probably cost him a HHOF spot. Martin's knees were shot.

But Martin was a 4 time all-star at LW. Had he played a full career he probably would have had a career similar to Michel Goulet. The RW was Rene Robert. Not really close to a HHOFer, but at least PLAYING like one at the time in the mid 1970s. No doubt Perreault is a clear cut above either one of them, but while it is amazing to see he never played with another HHOFer in his career (save for Tim Horton two years when he was old) the truth is if you had done a poll in 1976 asking if Martin and Robert would be HHOFers you would probably have a lot of posters predicting they would be.

Not to mention Danny Gare scored 50 goals twice as Perreault's teammate. No, the Sabres didn't have a star goalie or a star defenseman, but they could score goals.

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02-21-2012, 07:13 PM
  #37
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As good as Robert and Martin were, Perreault remains the only HHOFer from those Sabres teams, and that's saying something given his production over his 17-season career (1,191 GP - 512 - 814 A - 1,326 PTS), ESPECIALLY his playoff production: 90GP - 33 G - 70 A - 103 PTS. He did all that without any elite help. There is not a single other star from the period Perreault played, with his output, who never skated alongside a fellow future HHOFer, and don't even bother bringing Tim Horton into this discussion, as he was 42-44 years old as a Sabre, producing just 124 GP - 1 G - 22 A - 23 PTS (6 GP - 0 G - 1 A - 1 PT in the playoffs) for Buffalo before his death. Perreault, the lifeblood of the French Connection, literally made himself a HHOFer. I'd also argue that of all the NHL's stars during Perreault's peak, he is also the only one who played in front of the worst goaltending; heck, even Marcel Dionne had Vachon. It was only at the end of his career that Buffalo saw an infusion of better talent (Housely, Andreychuk, Barrasso), and even then, there isn't a HHOFer in the bunch (all three have been eligible, having been passed over a combined 17 times).

Ratelle is a horrible comparison as his playoff resume doesn't measure up to Perreault's. Gilbert was not soft. The way I interpreted Bobby's comments about Gilbert's lack of physicality was that Perreault was simply able to dominate the game in a non-traditional game (i.e. skating and creativity with the puck, as opposed to muscling through opponents like Clarke himself).

Perreault is basically the NHL's version of Dan Marino.
Richard Martin was a superstar sniper and well onto his way into the hall before an injury that basically ended his career.

The not playing with a HHOF guy is more trivia than anything else as he played with Martin for almost 10 seasons.

Perreault was an excellent player but I don't think he was under rated.

He also wasn't Dionne in the playoffs but Dionne deserves to be ranked higher overall IMO.

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02-21-2012, 07:18 PM
  #38
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No doubt Perreault had talent to play with.

But I wonder if he and his team would have been better off with a Steve Larmer/Dave Taylor type who was defensively responsible and could do the dirty work.

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02-22-2012, 09:21 AM
  #39
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Um, I mention Taylor and Simmer because those were his main linemates on the Triple Crown line when he racked up his best seasons and all his awards and All-Star spots.
Taylor had (3) 40-goal seasons, (6) 40-assists seasons, (2) 100-point seasons and (7) PPG seasons while skating alongside Dionne, though was unremarkable in their postseasons together (25 GP - 21 PTS ; 0.84 PPG).

Simmer had (3) 40-goal seasons, (6) 40-assists seasons, (2) 100-point seasons and (5) PPG seasons while skating alongside Dionne, with decent showings in their postseasons together (15 GP-14 PTS; 0.93 PPG). Simmer was also a 2-time First Team All-Star selection.

Neither will ever make it into the HHOF.

Rick Martin had (4) 40-goal seasons, (1) 40-assists seasons, (0) 100-point seasons and (5) PPG seasons while skating alongside Perreault, and was underwhelming in his playoffs with Gil (63 GP - 53 PTS ; 0.84 PPG). Martin was also a 2-time First Team All-Star selection & 2-time Second Team All-Star selection, though at a position with weak competition at the time (Hadfield? Vickers?), especially compared to what Taylor and Simmer were later up against at their respective positions.

Martin was barely a regular season PPG player at the time of his forced retirement (1.02), with his production showing steady decline by the early age of 26 (if not, 25).

Martin's regular season career before age 26...

374 GP - 414 PTS ; 1.11 PPG

Martin's playoff career before age 26...

32 GP - 31 PTS ; 0.97 PPG

Martin's regular season career after age 26...

311 GP - 287 PTS ; 0.92 PPG

Martin's playoff career after age 26...

31 GP - 22 PTS ; 0.71 PPG

So not only was Martin inferior to Dionne's Triple Crown linemates, but this idea that some posters in this thread have raised that Martin was a HHOF-quality player who would have made it to the HHOF if not for his untimely retirement...

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Richard Martin was a superstar sniper and well onto his way into the hall before an injury that basically ended his career.

The not playing with a HHOF guy is more trivia than anything else as he played with Martin for almost 10 seasons.
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Perreault did have Richard Martin. We forget about Martin...his early retirement probably cost him a HHOF spot. Martin's knees were shot.
...is absurd, and the trend in his numbers indicates such. That injury against the Caps didn't take place until well after his yearly decline in production began.

And if Rick Martin is the very best player Perreault played a significant amount of time with, that it makes Gil look even better.

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Delvecchio was what 40 by the time a young Dionne played with him for a few years...
Yet that decrepit Delvecchio still posted 163 GP - 141 PTS (0.87 PPG) while with Dionne, which is significant production.

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...and he played with rookie Robitaille in his last year as a King.
That "rookie" took the Calder that season, and was playing at a PPG during the 67 games he played with Dionne.

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As Nalyd said, his numbers are really nothing special in comparison to his all-time reputation.
LOL "Nothig special?" What reputation?

He barely made the HOH's '09 Top-100 at No. 85 (and will probably miss cut on the next list y'all make) despite being ranked No. 13 all-time in regular season PPG (1.11) among those with at least 1,000 regular season games played (No. 23 if you include everyone) and No. 11 all-time in postseason PPG (1.14 PPG) among everyone (no minimum number of games played required).

Whatever reputation you guys ranked him on clearly has nothing to do with his numbers.


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02-22-2012, 09:33 AM
  #40
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Perreault was such a sick stickhandler , his stickhandle is also ageing very well from every videos I've seen of him.

His balance , right-left fakes (agility) and the speed of execution of these , + his eye-hand coordination when controlling the puck and his patience would still be on top in today's league.He might even be the best stickhandler in today's league.

He also had a great shot and a great vision.

and he did all that with old skaters and stick.Watching Perreault play today would be superb.

I don't know how to quantify that in a statistical way , but on the ice , Perreault very rarely looked like he wasn't the best player on it.


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02-22-2012, 11:06 AM
  #41
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LOL "Nothig special?" What reputation?

He barely made the HOH's '09 Top-100 at No. 85 (and will probably miss cut on the next list y'all make) despite being ranked No. 13 all-time in regular season PPG (1.11) among those with at least 1,000 regular season games played (No. 23 if you include everyone) and No. 11 all-time in postseason PPG (1.14 PPG) among everyone (no minimum number of games played required).

Whatever reputation you guys ranked him on clearly has nothing to do with his numbers.
haha, settle down there, guy. I'm referring to his reputation among "hockey people", for example, look at where he ranked on the 1998 THN list.

I don't care about the kinds of numbers you're quoting as they're heavily influenced by career GP and era.

When I say his numbers are "nothing special" I am referring specifically to more advanced methods than career number counting, such as how highly he tended to place in leaue scoring from year to year, how often he did so, and what percentage of the league scoring leader he achieved - in relation to other players typically thought of as top-150 players. he's "nothing special" in comparison to them, but obviously special compared to an average player.

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02-22-2012, 11:07 AM
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RECsGuy, nothing you showed there really moves it beyond the fact that Taylor/Simmer vs Martin/Robert/Gare isn't that big a difference. If I was snarky, I would say of course they had better stats, they played with the better player in Dionne.

And please, stop the Delvecchio and Robitaille stuff, Dionne played 19 years in the NHL and he played 2 years with Delvecchio and 1 year with Robitaille. His best season with Delvecchio was the 12th best season of his career, the Robitaille year wasn't even relevant (74 points), in other words, the best 11 (!) seasons of Dionne's career were without either one.

Perreault was a great player but your aggressive efforts to maximize his appeal simply distort the historical record.

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02-22-2012, 02:20 PM
  #44
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He's overrated, actually. They don't ask how, they ask how many.

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02-22-2012, 02:59 PM
  #45
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He's overrated, actually.
Care to explain why you feel this way?

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They don't ask how, they ask how many.
You wouldn't be talking about Stanley Cups, would you? B/c I've got Kirk Maltby and Sergei Brylin waiting in the wings if you want to go down that path.

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02-22-2012, 04:01 PM
  #46
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haha, settle down there, guy. I'm referring to his reputation among "hockey people", for example, look at where he ranked on the 1998 THN list.
To be fair though, that was 14 years ago. A lot has changed since then. For sure there have been players since then to bump him well out of the top 50. But in 1998? I don't remember a lot of fuss.

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I don't know how to quantify that in a statistical way , but on the ice , Perreault very rarely looked like he wasn't the best player on it.
I, and anyone else who watched Perreault, know what you are talking about. I don't know if that necessarily makes him a better player, but it doesn't hurt him either. There is something to be said for being the central focus on the ice.

c
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So not only was Martin inferior to Dionne's Triple Crown linemates, but this idea that some posters in this thread have raised that Martin was a HHOF-quality player who would have made it to the HHOF if not for his untimely retirement...

...is absurd, and the trend in his numbers indicates such. That injury against the Caps didn't take place until well after his yearly decline in production began.

And if Rick Martin is the very best player Perreault played a significant amount of time with, that it makes Gil look even better.
He was still doing fine at the time of his injury and retirement. His last full season was 1979-'80 and he had 45 goals and 79 points. In 1980-'81 he had 21 points in 23 games before his injury. Then in 1981-'82 he had 4 points in 3 games before his retirement if you want to count that.

In 1974 he was 6th in scoring in the NHL. He had 52 goals, second to Esposito, and 86 points. The next best Sabre was Robert at 65 points (Perreault missed a chunk of time). In 1975, 95 points in 68 games, another 52 goal season. 1976, 49 goals.

So Martin was a player himself. I wouldn't say he had any worse of a career than Simmer. Robert certainly can't match up overall to Taylor but the supporting cast on the Sabres was better than on the Kings. So I don't ever really associate Perreault being on a team that held him back at all. If this is the mid 1970s the best line in hockey is the "French Connection Line". Martin made the 1972 and 1976 Canada teams as well. He wasn't a scrub. I'm a huge Perreault supporter who believes he was better than his stats suggest so it isn't as if I have a biased approach either.

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02-22-2012, 04:04 PM
  #47
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Care to explain why you feel this way?



You wouldn't be talking about Stanley Cups, would you? B/c I've got Kirk Maltby and Sergei Brylin waiting in the wings if you want to go down that path.
Im pretty sure his point is, if were judging an offensive player, its the points you score that matter (with era relativity and all that stuff thrown in, of course), not how pretty you look doing it.

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02-22-2012, 05:03 PM
  #48
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I’m pretty sure his point is, if we’re judging an offensive player, it’s the points you score that matter (with era relativity and all that stuff thrown in, of course), not how pretty you look doing it.
It depends , if you are just flashy a la Pavel Bure , I agree , but if you are flashy a la Gilbert Perreault , there is something to be said about controlling the puck more often , being the ''main guy'' on the ice every shift considering both club.If we could have a statistic about puck possession time for every player (which would be a hockey statistic dream) Perreault would be damn high.There isn't any stats to show offensive zone entries , dekeing a couple of players and installing the play even if you are not to get any points on the play , being the center of attention of the other club (most superstars got this treatment , but did we ever try to compared the difference between them?).I understand numbers are more important , but a player like Perreault has more chance of succeeding in any kind of hockey from any era on any club with any player because of his superior dominance on the ice.

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02-22-2012, 05:41 PM
  #49
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Hey I'm not even gonna knock the playoffs, I'm not one of those guys, hell I've defended Ratelle quite vigorously on this forum.

But if you hear the laurels, if you see what JetsAlternate posted, you'd be shocked that Perreault never won an Art Ross (not even a runner-up finish), never won a Hart, never finished top 5 in goals, no 1st team All-Star spots. That's why he's not Marino - Marino owned the NFL stat book for passing until very recently.

And Robert, Martin and Gare aren't quite Hall of Famers, no, but neither are Taylor and Simmer. Of course, around these parts you mention the word Dionne and "but playoffs" is an instant response, but I'm talking regular season here, where 90% of a career plays out. Dionne beat Perreault out for that 1st All-Star team spot in 1977 and Dionne was on the barely over .500 Kings not the 100+ point Sabres. The very Bobby Clarke beat out Perreault in 1976.

Now most people will have Dionne and Clarke pretty easily over Perreault on an all-time list, but then neither Dionne or Clarke are usually given the flowery descriptions Perreault gets or feature on "top skilled players" lists. They were the better players, but probably not the more skilled players and that hints at Perreault's skill maybe not translating to success as well as it has in the cases of several other players and that's what's meant by effectiveness.
This is a very good post. It's interesting that many view Dionne so differently than Perreault (including myself) but your point is perfectly valid.

While Perreault did perform better (from memory anyway) in both playoffs and international play, he wasn't exactly a key part of championships any more than Dionne was.

It almost hurts Dionne that his numbers are too good, too close to the best of the best EVER and that, by comparison, his awful playoff numbers (and he sucked in international play as well, from memory, not looking it up) seem to stand out more relative to his incredible regular season numbers.

Perreault's regular season numbers were much worse than Dionne's (though still incredibly impressive) but had marginally-significantly better playoff/intl numbers, relatively speaking.

Plus, Perreaut's elegance and flair with the puck was amazing, made him seem even more effective out there, not unlike's Lafleur's speed/stickhandling and Bure's rocket-speed.

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02-22-2012, 06:09 PM
  #50
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Originally Posted by BenchBrawl View Post
It depends , if you are just flashy a la Pavel Bure , I agree , but if you are flashy a la Gilbert Perreault , there is something to be said about controlling the puck more often , being the ''main guy'' on the ice every shift considering both club.If we could have a statistic about puck possession time for every player (which would be a hockey statistic dream) Perreault would be damn high.There isn't any stats to show offensive zone entries , dekeing a couple of players and installing the play even if you are not to get any points on the play , being the center of attention of the other club (most superstars got this treatment , but did we ever try to compared the difference between them?).I understand numbers are more important , but a player like Perreault has more chance of succeeding in any kind of hockey from any era on any club with any player because of his superior dominance on the ice.
but if this had a significant impact on the game it would show up in his point totals, GF/GA, etc. It doesn't appear to.

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