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Top 25 Swedish Hockey Players of All-Time - #25 - FINAL POLL

View Poll Results: #25
Pekka Lindmark 1 4.35%
Honken Holmqvist 5 21.74%
Bengt-Ake Gustafsson 1 4.35%
Tomas Sandstrom 3 13.04%
Tomas Jonsson 0 0%
Jorgen Jonsson 2 8.70%
Calle Johansson 1 4.35%
Thomas Gradin 2 8.70%
Patrik Sundstrom 0 0%
Stefan Persson 0 0%
Pelle Lindbergh 8 34.78%
Michael Nylander 0 0%
Voters: 23. You may not vote on this poll

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Old
09-05-2012, 01:44 AM
  #26
Howe Elbows 9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jagorim Jarg View Post
Where would you rank the Sedins on your personal list?
Given their respective Art Ross' winning seasons, it's tough to keep them out of the top 15.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
Maybe you could post your own personal top 25 list and the reasoning behind it as well?
I think something like 20 of the poll winners definitely deserve to be there. Here are the ones I don't really agree with...

Samuelsson - when I think of players with an impact on Swedish hockey, Ulf isn't likely to be among the first 25 names on my list. He can be argued as belonging somewhere in the 23-30 range, in my opinion.

Sjöberg - great peak, but maybe a few spots too high?

Öhlund - Can someone explain why he should be seen as one of the top 25 Swedish players of all-time?

Steen, Jönsson - Well, I think these guys deserve to be on the list, I'd just like to see more discussions and comparisons to players who didn't spend portions of their careers in North America.

Bäckström - Too soon. While I'm not going to ignore his success in the NHL, I don't value these years as equal to other players entire careers.

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09-05-2012, 01:54 AM
  #27
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I'm not going to jump on board now (i.e. voting, though I guess I couldn't anymore even if I wanted), but I do have a little soft spot for Pelle Lindbergh.

1980 Winter Olympics, Sweden versus Czechoslovakia (4-2); seeing it as a 5-year old has really stuck in my memory above any other game from my childhood. I don't understand why, since I was rather a fan of USSR hockey (certainly not a fan of Sweden then!), and even in those Olympics, there was a 'slightly' more famous game in which the Soviets (under)performed and yet I don't remember the game (Miracle) nearly as well.

Anyway, Lindbergh must have been sensational in the game, since it's his performance what made the game so memorable for me. Later I've seen highlights of the match and they've only strengthened my feelings; even the 2 goals that CSSR managed in the game were a bit questionable, I think.
A few days later, on the other hand, Lindbergh was in net when the Soviets destroyed Sweden in a game where the Silver medal was on the line. At 35:02 USSR already led 9-0 and basically stopped trying too hard after that (the final score 9-2). But this was the game where the Soviets finally played like you would have expected from them, though it was too little, too late for the Gold medal. Overall, the young Lindbergh was always fairly defenseless against the Russians, but he was unfortunate to meet the Soviets at the start of their true peak (e.g. 1979 WC, USSR-SWE 11-3 and 9-3).

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09-05-2012, 08:18 PM
  #28
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It is quite obvious that this list isn't made by Swedes, it feels more like a Canadian list of who they think are the best Swedish players, some of todays NHL-players are way too high in this list. I think it is based too much on trophies/awards/votes and NHL stats to actually be a valid list but maybe that's just me.

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09-05-2012, 11:37 PM
  #29
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It is quite obvious that this list isn't made by Swedes, it feels more like a Canadian list of who they think are the best Swedish players, some of todays NHL-players are way too high in this list. I think it is based too much on trophies/awards/votes and NHL stats to actually be a valid list but maybe that's just me.
I feel that native Swedes would rank the pre-NHLers far too high. That, or they value contributions to the national team higher than NHL accomplishments, which is a legitimate opinion but one that I strongly disagree with. The NHL in its modern state is the best, most world-inclusive hockey league in history, and has the strongest, most difficult competition, so the achievements gained in the NHL have to be considered greater than all-star team nominations from tournaments where Canada was sending junior teams from small towns in Ontario.

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09-06-2012, 01:56 AM
  #30
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I feel that native Swedes would rank the pre-NHLers far too high. That, or they value contributions to the national team higher than NHL accomplishments, which is a legitimate opinion but one that I strongly disagree with. The NHL in its modern state is the best, most world-inclusive hockey league in history, and has the strongest, most difficult competition, so the achievements gained in the NHL have to be considered greater than all-star team nominations from tournaments where Canada was sending junior teams from small towns in Ontario.
You don't seem to grasp that in Sweden people don't stare themselvs blind on individual achievements because if that was the case a guy like Eldebrink would be in your top-25. In Canada they didn't use to do that either. When discussing players back in the early era nobody said Howe or Richard were the best because of a Hart Trophy but their skills. What they brought to the game were far more important than who GMs or the media thought had been the most valueable.

It's already been established that most swedish (and other europeans) fared well when facing tougher competition than candian amateurs.

NHL in its modern state is further away from being a dominant league on a per-team basis than it were in the O6 era. People are underrating the other leagues because they don't contain the absolute best.

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09-06-2012, 03:05 AM
  #31
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You don't seem to grasp that in Sweden people don't stare themselvs blind on individual achievements because if that was the case a guy like Eldebrink would be in your top-25. In Canada they didn't use to do that either. When discussing players back in the early era nobody said Howe or Richard were the best because of a Hart Trophy but their skills. What they brought to the game were far more important than who GMs or the media thought had been the most valueable.

It's already been established that most swedish (and other europeans) fared well when facing tougher competition than candian amateurs.

NHL in its modern state is further away from being a dominant league on a per-team basis than it were in the O6 era. People are underrating the other leagues because they don't contain the absolute best.
Howe and Richard were also playing against the best players in the world.

Hart trophy is definitely relevant. As is the Pearson. It shows without argument that professional sports journalists considered this player to be the league MVP. I'd be a narcissist to think that my interpretation was justifiable to supercede those of the GMs or the players or the PHWA.

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09-06-2012, 04:29 AM
  #32
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Originally Posted by Jagorim Jarg View Post
Howe and Richard were also playing against the best players in the world.

Hart trophy is definitely relevant. As is the Pearson. It shows without argument that professional sports journalists considered this player to be the league MVP. I'd be a narcissist to think that my interpretation was justifiable to supercede those of the GMs or the players or the PHWA.
There is a difference between relevant and absolute. You speak of NHL play and awards as an absolute. It's a selective truth. When you value you players you look at them differently. "The NHL player were great because of X" and "The international player were bad because of Y". They are not valued in the same way and that creates the gap between them.

Same thing with leagues, coaches, eras and so on.

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09-06-2012, 04:47 AM
  #33
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Even if some believe that the true MVP was another player, it still undeniably indicates that the winner had a season worth commemorating with an award. Ray Bourque should have won the Hart over Mark Messier in 1990, but that doesn't detract from the fact that Mark Messier had an amazing year that contributed to his legend.

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09-06-2012, 07:42 AM
  #34
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You don't seem to grasp that in Sweden people don't stare themselvs blind on individual achievements because if that was the case a guy like Eldebrink would be in your top-25. In Canada they didn't use to do that either. When discussing players back in the early era nobody said Howe or Richard were the best because of a Hart Trophy but their skills. What they brought to the game were far more important than who GMs or the media thought had been the most valueable.

It's already been established that most swedish (and other europeans) fared well when facing tougher competition than candian amateurs.

NHL in its modern state is further away from being a dominant league on a per-team basis than it were in the O6 era. People are underrating the other leagues because they don't contain the absolute best.
It's not necessarily that I think people are underrating other leagues, it's more that I think Sweden has had their most successful period in their history in the last 15 years, which is why we see an inordinate amount of players from that era on this list. I DON'T think we should see guys like Ohlund, Samuelsson, Backstrom, or people like that on this list since they really haven't necessarily left their mark on Swedish hockey like guys like Honken or Lindmark, but having said I don't have the same problem you do with guys like Sedin and Naslund since, again, in my opinion we're talking about the golden era of Swedish hockey at this time.

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09-06-2012, 09:33 AM
  #35
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It's not necessarily that I think people are underrating other leagues, it's more that I think Sweden has had their most successful period in their history in the last 15 years, which is why we see an inordinate amount of players from that era on this list. I DON'T think we should see guys like Ohlund, Samuelsson, Backstrom, or people like that on this list since they really haven't necessarily left their mark on Swedish hockey like guys like Honken or Lindmark, but having said I don't have the same problem you do with guys like Sedin and Naslund since, again, in my opinion we're talking about the golden era of Swedish hockey at this time.
If this is the prevailing reason why some posters here are upset at this list, is it really anything more than a disagreement over what the list should be? To tell you the truth myself, I think a list of "the best players ever who happened to be Swedish" is a more interesting exercise on a community like hfboards HOH, since all of us are capable of researching how good these players are, but only a select few really have much of a valid case to make about anyone's impact on the Swedish cultural fabric.

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09-06-2012, 09:45 AM
  #36
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If this is the prevailing reason why some posters here are upset at this list, is it really anything more than a disagreement over what the list should be? To tell you the truth myself, I think a list of "the best players ever who happened to be Swedish" is a more interesting exercise on a community like hfboards HOH, since all of us are capable of researching how good these players are, but only a select few really have much of a valid case to make about anyone's impact on the Swedish cultural fabric.
I guess my point by saying that is this: I feel a guy like Ohlund is just going to end up blending into the fabric of Swedish history without anyone particularly remembering him, whereas Honken or Lindbergh has already stood the test of time and will continue to do so in the future.

Doesn't necessarily make him worse or better, but I do feel that when making a Top 25 list like this, prestige, contributions to the beginnings of a country's hockey, and other factors possibly tangential to his actual playing ability should be taken into account.

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09-06-2012, 09:56 AM
  #37
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I guess my point by saying that is this: I feel a guy like Ohlund is just going to end up blending into the fabric of Swedish history without anyone particularly remembering him, whereas Honken or Lindbergh has already stood the test of time and will continue to do so in the future.

Doesn't necessarily make him worse or better, but I do feel that when making a Top 25 list like this, prestige, contributions to the beginnings of a country's hockey, and other factors possibly tangential to his actual playing ability should be taken into account.
I would counter that part of the point of discussing hockey's history is to remember players who others don't, especially if they were actually as good or better than some players who were. For example, I think it's a real shame that so many New York Rangers fans seem to have forgotten their team's greatest players, Bill Cook and Frank Boucher, whereas comparable players from other clubs — Conacher in Toronto, Morenz in Montreal, Shore in Boston etc — are much more celebrated. Not exactly the same thing, but you catch my drift here.

But anyway, my point is really that some people who are coming in and flinging all kinds of poo at the composition of this list just because they disagree on what the purpose of such a list is, are being silly.

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09-06-2012, 03:11 PM
  #38
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Originally Posted by vecens24 View Post
I guess my point by saying that is this: I feel a guy like Ohlund is just going to end up blending into the fabric of Swedish history without anyone particularly remembering him, whereas Honken or Lindbergh has already stood the test of time and will continue to do so in the future.

Doesn't necessarily make him worse or better, but I do feel that when making a Top 25 list like this, prestige, contributions to the beginnings of a country's hockey, and other factors possibly tangential to his actual playing ability should be taken into account.
that's not how I see it. it should be about how good they were. Like Kasatonov being better than Sologubov. If you are looking at the USSR in a vaccuum and judging their dominance and significance as soviets, then Sologubov is clearly and significantly better. But when we compare them to a constant (i.e. the best in the world in their time) the answer is completely the opposite. I was always looking at this list in the second way, not the first.

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09-06-2012, 04:36 PM
  #39
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I guess my point by saying that is this: I feel a guy like Ohlund is just going to end up blending into the fabric of Swedish history without anyone particularly remembering him, whereas Honken or Lindbergh has already stood the test of time and will continue to do so in the future.

Doesn't necessarily make him worse or better, but I do feel that when making a Top 25 list like this, prestige, contributions to the beginnings of a country's hockey, and other factors possibly tangential to his actual playing ability should be taken into account.
i'll just point out that on many occasions during these 25 polls, i invited posters (swedish or non-swedish) to tell us about what loob, mats naslund, sterner, svedberg, the jonsson brothers, etc. meant to swedish hockey. few, if any, took me up on it.

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09-06-2012, 05:12 PM
  #40
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that's not how I see it. it should be about how good they were. Like Kasatonov being better than Sologubov. If you are looking at the USSR in a vaccuum and judging their dominance and significance as soviets, then Sologubov is clearly and significantly better. But when we compare them to a constant (i.e. the best in the world in their time) the answer is completely the opposite. I was always looking at this list in the second way, not the first.
See but to a point talent has to trump what you've done. I'm saying that it should be a factor, not the be all end all.

For instance, Kasatonov was in the top 50 defensive players ever (I threw out a number because I don't remember his exact placement) when HOH did the list. Sologubov never was up for voting even. That I think constitutes talent trumping founders. But do we really have a situation like that here where Mattias Ohlund, a guy who surely was a big minute eater but never got much in the way of Norris/AST voting while playing in the Vancouver market? I don't see that at all. Lindmark and Lindbergh are guys who will get placements on people's top 60 lists for goalies I'd assume. Ohlund? Not so much. I see Ohlund as a guy who will be forgotten by history whereas guys like Honken and Lindmark clearly haven't been forgotten.

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09-06-2012, 05:28 PM
  #41
vadim sharifijanov
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See but to a point talent has to trump what you've done. I'm saying that it should be a factor, not the be all end all.

For instance, Kasatonov was in the top 50 defensive players ever (I threw out a number because I don't remember his exact placement) when HOH did the list. Sologubov never was up for voting even. That I think constitutes talent trumping founders. But do we really have a situation like that here where Mattias Ohlund, a guy who surely was a big minute eater but never got much in the way of Norris/AST voting while playing in the Vancouver market? I don't see that at all. Lindmark and Lindbergh are guys who will get placements on people's top 60 lists for goalies I'd assume. Ohlund? Not so much. I see Ohlund as a guy who will be forgotten by history whereas guys like Honken and Lindmark clearly haven't been forgotten.
i didn't have ohlund in my top 25, but being that he was better than jovo but routinely finished behind him in norris/AST voting, i think it's fair to say that he was underrated by that metric.

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09-06-2012, 05:35 PM
  #42
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Lindmark and Lindbergh are guys who will get placements on people's top 60 lists for goalies I'd assume. Ohlund? Not so much. I see Ohlund as a guy who will be forgotten by history whereas guys like Honken and Lindmark clearly haven't been forgotten.
Well, each team generally has 6x the defensemen as it does goalies..

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09-06-2012, 05:40 PM
  #43
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I think Ohlund made a few of the original top 80 lists.

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09-06-2012, 05:43 PM
  #44
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i didn't have ohlund in my top 25, but being that he was better than jovo but routinely finished behind him in norris/AST voting, i think it's fair to say that he was underrated by that metric.
I defintiely thought that he was better than Jovo in Vancouver, but still, to not even get ONE season of legitimate voting in that market is something that is troubling to me. I understand your point that he was consistently underrated, but just ONE season is all I'm asking for here and he doesn't have it. His game certainly wasn't conducive to getting votes, but hell neither is Ryan Suter's game and now he has two seasons better than Ohlund's in a career less than half as long (I'm just using Suter as an example of a quieter player who played next to a "louder" guy like Jovanovski).

I'm just saying by this that it isn't impossible to play a quiet game and still get Norris/AST votes.

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09-06-2012, 05:44 PM
  #45
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I think Ohlund made a few of the original top 80 lists.
He made one, Hardyvan's. Which is unsurprising. Absolutely respect Hardyvan's opinion, but he clearly and admittedly has a preference towards modern players.

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09-06-2012, 05:48 PM
  #46
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Well, each team generally has 6x the defensemen as it does goalies..
Thought about this too (and we'll ignore the fact that it hasn't been 6 to 1 throughout most of the history of hockey and just go with your original point, a point I have actually made before when comparing Cameron and Paton).

I understand your point, but don't we think on average goaltender is a more important position than defenseman because of minutes played (I think it was different in the early eras of hockey where players played full games, which is why I made said earlier point about Paton and Cameron)? For instance, I think a #1 defenseman can certainly be more important than a goalie, even a #2 in certain situations (for instance Anaheim with Pronger and Niedermayer). But is there any #4 defenseman throughout history who has been more important than a goalie?

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09-07-2012, 01:52 AM
  #47
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that's not how I see it. it should be about how good they were. Like Kasatonov being better than Sologubov. If you are looking at the USSR in a vaccuum and judging their dominance and significance as soviets, then Sologubov is clearly and significantly better. But when we compare them to a constant (i.e. the best in the world in their time) the answer is completely the opposite. I was always looking at this list in the second way, not the first.
So what made Öhlund better than Stoltz for example?

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09-07-2012, 02:04 AM
  #48
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But is there any #4 defenseman throughout history who has been more important than a goalie?
I have to imagine most of the Canucks defensemen during Ohlund's time were more important than Dan Cloutier.

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09-07-2012, 10:00 AM
  #49
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So what made Öhlund better than Stoltz for example?
Ohlund, for a good 6-7 year period was a serviceable #1 physical/shutdown defenseman with decent upside. If I was to guess where he ranked in the world during this time, he would have been approximately 20th-best.

Was Stoltz a top-20 defenseman in the world for the 1960s? I don't see it. Plus, if he was, 20th in the 1960s is not nearly as impressive as 20th in the 2000s.

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09-07-2012, 10:43 AM
  #50
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I have to imagine most of the Canucks defensemen during Ohlund's time were more important than Dan Cloutier.
They may have been better, sure. But were they more important to the team's success? I think that it's very clear that they weren't.

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