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Why do you think the scoring is down in the NHL?

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09-21-2003, 06:25 PM
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Why do you think the scoring is down in the NHL?

Why do you think the scoring is down in the NHL compared to how it was back in the 1980s and early 1990s?.........Comments, suggestions, and/OR Opinions..........Let's hear what you have to say about the downturn in NHL scoring.

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09-21-2003, 06:27 PM
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Bigger goalies and equiptment, Traps, Players suck now!

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09-21-2003, 06:29 PM
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Goalie equipment

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09-21-2003, 06:30 PM
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Larger players, ineffectively enforced rules, better systems.

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09-21-2003, 07:01 PM
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There are many factors. One that I think is overlooked is that the goaltending has improved, despite the equipment. You now have many goaltenders going into the butterfly style Roy has popularized. You now have guys who can play well with unorthodox styles like Hasek and Chechmanek. You now have goaltending talents so great that they could go #1 in a draft. You now see most teams (if not all teams) with a goaltending coach (I think this is new at least). Part of the reason scoring is down because the guys who stop the pucks have improved as a whole.

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09-21-2003, 07:08 PM
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Too many teams. There just aren't enough talented hockey players in the world to fill up 30 NHL rosters. Thus, there are too many AHL calibur players in NHL lineups and the game suffers because of the lack of talent. Contraction would be the only sure fire way to make sure only the most talented hockey players are playing in the NHL.

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09-21-2003, 07:12 PM
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i've got a controversial view...

convential wisdom seems to be that the talent pool in the NHL is thinner than it was 20 years ago. i disagree. back then there were 20-23 teams, now 30. but the number of north american players is very close to the same. i don't have the numbers in front of me but i remember seeing them and it was close.

what this means is of course more european players. i don't see how the talent is much thinner now as a result of more teams.

here's the kicker: i think that scoring is down BECAUSE of a higher amount of talent in the league now. no more pylons making $50,000. this is why many casual hockey fans like CHL - there are four or five standouts who skate circles around everyone else, and a bunch of guys who won't make the NHL. this creates more scoring, more exciting hockey.

of course more complex systems, goalie equipment, coaching/drafting tendencies, economics, all play a part but i really see teams full of players that just don't make the mistakes made 20 years ago.

to test my theory i'm maybe going to watch an old game, and not like 87 cup finals game 7, i mean an old NHL regular season game between colorado and hartford or something. maybe i'll prove myself wrong, seems like if this is the main reason then it's kind of hopeless.

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09-21-2003, 07:14 PM
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I think the Goaltending has improved yes but so too has everybody else and that is why I think the scoring is down.........some of you out there might be thinking to yourself; "Wait a second...if the forwards are better too like the Goalies are then shouldn't the scoring also be up?"........Not necessarily so........just to give you an analogy (a rough one anyways).....I'm 35 years old and if I go play street hockey with a bunch of 10-year olds I will be able to score alot of goals on those kids because I am a much more talented player then what these kids are.........HOWEVER, as soon as I start to play with guys my age who are just as talented if not more, then my scoring will start to go down..........I think this is what's happened to the NHL.........everybody seems to think that the talent level is depleted when it actually is the other way around..........

I noticed the NHL scoring start to go down when alot more of the talented Euro players entered the NHL in the late 80's and early '90s..........this raised up the overall talent level in the ENTIRE League and because there are many more great players today then there ever was before, all of these great players have been able to neutralize each other.........that's my theory anyways.

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09-21-2003, 07:17 PM
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A high average skill level among the players, thanks largely to European expansion, combined with league-wide parity, has helped the NHL return to a more historically average level of scoring.

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09-21-2003, 07:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Looger
i've got a controversial view...

convential wisdom seems to be that the talent pool in the NHL is thinner than it was 20 years ago. i disagree. back then there were 20-23 teams, now 30. but the number of north american players is very close to the same. i don't have the numbers in front of me but i remember seeing them and it was close.

what this means is of course more european players. i don't see how the talent is much thinner now as a result of more teams.

here's the kicker: i think that scoring is down BECAUSE of a higher amount of talent in the league now.


I was about to same something similar, but you beat me to the punch.

I know it's difficult to swallow, but scoring is down because talent is better -- not worse.

Teams today would mop the ice up with the free-wheeling players of the 80's. Players today are bigger, stronger, faster, have quicker reflexes, play smarter defense, etc. Of course, goaltenders are much better too.

It is not uncommon for aging, NHL veterans to be asked to compare the NHL of today with the NHL of their early careers. Without fail, each and every one of these interviews ends in an admission that: today's players are significantly more talented than the players of yesterday.

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09-21-2003, 07:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Other Dave
A high average skill level among the players, thanks largely to European expansion, combined with league-wide parity, has helped the NHL return to a more historically average level of scoring.

Other Dave
So then what's the answer?..........Some more expansion?........after all when Gretzky was scoring in those 200+ point seasons that was right around the time when the League added some more teams.......the WHA folded and the NHL accepted 4-teams from that League.......the Hartford Whalers, Quebec Nordiques, Winnipeg Jets and the Edmonton Oilers.

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09-21-2003, 07:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkey_00
So then what's the answer?..........Some more expansion?........after all when Gretzky was scoring in those 200+ point seasons that was right around the time when the League added some more teams.......the WHA folded and the NHL accepted 4-teams from that League.......the Hartford Whalers, Quebec Nordiques, Winnipeg Jets and the Edmonton Oilers.
umm... no. I think few and far between think that.

But, first, you have to get people to admit there's a problem. I, frankly, don't think scoring in the NHL is that bad. I would prefer to make reasonable changes to improve scoring (i.e., limiting ridiculous pads).

But, quite honestly, I think that today's scoring pretty much reflects how things should play out naturally. I like today's brand of hockey just fine.

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09-21-2003, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by The Frugal Gourmet
umm... no. I think few and far between think that.

But, first, you have to get people to admit there's a problem. I, frankly, don't think scoring in the NHL is that bad. I would prefer to make reasonable changes to improve scoring (i.e., limiting ridiculous pads).

But, quite honestly, I think that today's scoring pretty much reflects how things should play out naturally. I like today's brand of hockey just fine.
Well there is talk of the New WHA starting up and if they do go ahead with that Hockey League and steal some of the better talent from the NHL then THAT might be the thing that helps raise the overall scoring in the NHL...........I think.

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09-21-2003, 07:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkey_00
So then what's the answer?..........Some more expansion?........after all when Gretzky was scoring in those 200+ point seasons that was right around the time when the League added some more teams.......the WHA folded and the NHL accepted 4-teams from that League.......the Hartford Whalers, Quebec Nordiques, Winnipeg Jets and the Edmonton Oilers.
there's a solution? the eighties were an aberration brought on by external factors.

just something i heard, the last 100+ years of baseball has produced five-year (i think...) cycles, batting and pitching as it relates to drafting etc. hockey may also be subject to that type of equalization.

personally the best short-term would be a better enforcing of obstruction rules, plus of course goalies not permitted to wear equipment that makes their bodies wider than normal.

expansion also creates more fans, more kids growing up watching hockey, but it will have a short-term effect.

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09-21-2003, 07:36 PM
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkey_00
Well there is talk of the New WHA starting up and if they do go ahead with that Hockey League and steal some of the better talent from the NHL then THAT might be the thing that helps raise the overall scoring in the NHL...........I think.
Do you really believe that, though?

I mean you don't have to have a business degree to know why all the best talent in the world goes to the NHL.

If I was a betting man, I wouldn't bet much money the WHA is going to draw many players away from the NHL.

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09-21-2003, 07:37 PM
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Also, defence is mostly learned while offensive touch is something you're born with for the most part.

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09-21-2003, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Frugal Gourmet
Do you really believe that, though?

I mean you don't have to have a business degree to know why all the best talent in the world goes to the NHL.

If I was a betting man, I wouldn't bet much money the WHA is going to draw many players away from the NHL.
You got no arguement from me on that point buddy........WHA doesn't stand a chance.........I don't even think they'll last half as long as they did the first time around.........What was it back then?.......7-years?

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09-21-2003, 08:05 PM
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I think the reason players production going down is that team Defence is taking the tool. Everyone is now playing a very strategic Zone/Trap defence which, not only slows attackers down, but, most possibly, isolate the forwards. Also, I think that the Centerman play the 3rd man back strategy.

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09-21-2003, 08:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkey_00
Why do you think the scoring is down in the NHL compared to how it was back in the 1980s and early 1990s?.........Comments, suggestions, and/OR Opinions..........Let's hear what you have to say about the downturn in NHL scoring.
I attribute 80% of it on netminding.

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09-21-2003, 08:26 PM
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You know, I have never really understood this discussion because, in my mind at least (small as it might be ), there's really only one factor that's changed dramatically in the last 20 years or so.

Go back and watch a game from the 80's or before and you note that no one hooked, no one held, no one angled a player without the puck into the boards... Basically, the rules were enforced.

Now you have no speed through the neutral zone because players are allowed to do whatever they can to slow others down.

Certainly, there are different reasons for this (expansion, better systems, stronger players, better goalies with better padding), but what it boils down to is this: players with less talent even up the score by clutching, grabbing, hooking, and holding those with more talent and the refs let them do it.

How many points do you think Gretz would have managed if he'd been held and hooked while trying to make a pass. If you have doubts, go back and watch him play - he was barely touched. Take a player from today - Jagr. How many points do you think he'd get if no one was allowed to touch him other than a good and proper bodycheck? Now, just for fun, compare Gretz and Jagr. The latter is stronger and faster by far. Sure, he didn't see the ice as well as Gretz, but there's no denying that Jagr is a world-class talent. So how come he can barely crack the hundred point barrier when a weaker and slower player cracked two hundred?

Sometime in the late 80's and early 90's when all theses new players were brought in to play with all these new teams and they might not have had the talent to keep up, these new teams decided to implement systems which called for players to grab opponents to neutralize advantages. The league, in all it's wisdom, let it go hoping that the new teams would manage not to be blown out, and would continue to increase the fan base of the NHL.

Unfortunately, it got out of hand, and no one's been able to reign it back in. Penalties are not called.

Sure, you can point to the goalies and their huge equipment and say they cover a lot more of the net and they have far more talent than ever before. Agreed. But do you think they'd be able to rocket back and forth across the crease when two high-flying forwards zoomed in and tic-tac-toed the puck until it tickled the twine? While the goalies are better, so is the talent up front.

Guy Lafleur could zoom down the right side on Montreal making everyone look like a fool. Today, he'd get to his opposing winger and wouldn't get any further because he'd be held or hooked.

Call the rules as they should be and watch the game get better and better. Scoring will go up, as will fan support.

Of course, the goalies won't let it go up nearly as much as some might hope. Kudos to them.

A concerned fan.

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09-21-2003, 08:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guy!
You know, I have never really understood this discussion because, in my mind at least (small as it might be ), there's really only one factor that's changed dramatically in the last 20 years or so.

Go back and watch a game from the 80's or before and you note that no one hooked, no one held, no one angled a player without the puck into the boards... Basically, the rules were enforced.

Now you have no speed through the neutral zone because players are allowed to do whatever they can to slow others down.

Certainly, there are different reasons for this (expansion, better systems, stronger players, better goalies with better padding), but what it boils down to is this: players with less talent even up the score by clutching, grabbing, hooking, and holding those with more talent and the refs let them do it.

How many points do you think Gretz would have managed if he'd been held and hooked while trying to make a pass. If you have doubts, go back and watch him play - he was barely touched. Take a player from today - Jagr. How many points do you think he'd get if no one was allowed to touch him other than a good and proper bodycheck? Now, just for fun, compare Gretz and Jagr. The latter is stronger and faster by far. Sure, he didn't see the ice as well as Gretz, but there's no denying that Jagr is a world-class talent. So how come he can barely crack the hundred point barrier when a weaker and slower player cracked two hundred?

Sometime in the late 80's and early 90's when all theses new players were brought in to play with all these new teams and they might not have had the talent to keep up, these new teams decided to implement systems which called for players to grab opponents to neutralize advantages. The league, in all it's wisdom, let it go hoping that the new teams would manage not to be blown out, and would continue to increase the fan base of the NHL.

Unfortunately, it got out of hand, and no one's been able to reign it back in. Penalties are not called.

Sure, you can point to the goalies and their huge equipment and say they cover a lot more of the net and they have far more talent than ever before. Agreed. But do you think they'd be able to rocket back and forth across the crease when two high-flying forwards zoomed in and tic-tac-toed the puck until it tickled the twine? While the goalies are better, so is the talent up front.

Guy Lafleur could zoom down the right side on Montreal making everyone look like a fool. Today, he'd get to his opposing winger and wouldn't get any further because he'd be held or hooked.

Call the rules as they should be and watch the game get better and better. Scoring will go up, as will fan support.

Of course, the goalies won't let it go up nearly as much as some might hope. Kudos to them.

A concerned fan.
Ya that's another point as well.........I was at the Hockey Hall-of-Fame the other day (just up the road from me in Toronto) and was looking at some of those Gretzky hi-lights on film and not trying to take anything away from Gretz here but ya you're right, nobody hooked or grabbed the guy like we see happening all the time today with our Top hockey stars.

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09-21-2003, 08:40 PM
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Bigger players, same ice surface.

And expansion teams have had to resort to the neutral zone trap or some other neutral zone clogging system.

But I also sencerly believe that the players today are better than the average NHLer in 1980. In those days marginal players had jobs during summer. Now, with increased salaries, the players can focus on staying fit.

I don´t mind the scoring not running up - I like the style of play we see now. Skill still pays off and now,with Gretzky and Lemieux gone and far removed from his prime respectively, we have to realize that only the true superstars can accumulate 100+ Pts. seasons. And I don´t mind that at all.

Face it: the NHL kicks ass!

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09-21-2003, 10:09 PM
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Better goalkeepers, players that are bigger and faster than ever and at the same time much more sound tactically meaning that the amount of good scoring opportunities have gone down. Talent being spread among 30 teams, meaning more and more teams have to play team defense to be competitive (and with teams like the Ducks and Wild having playoff success you will see more and more teams adopting a more defensive system).

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09-21-2003, 10:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkey_00
Why do you think the scoring is down in the NHL compared to how it was back in the 1980s and early 1990s?
Well, it's down right now because the real season hasn't even started.

All of the below, IMO:

- Bigger bodies, better skaters (overall) on the same size ice surface as before. (Not to mention more officials taking up space as well!)

- The fact that the aforementioned big bodies and better skaters do not necessarily equate to better (more skilled) hockey players.

- Trapping systems. They are designed to clog up the neutral zone, effectively minimizing scoring opportunities off the rush. They obviously work very well.

- Goalies' padding, especially chest protectors. (Call it "The Michelin Man" Syndrome).

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09-22-2003, 03:07 AM
  #25
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so here's my question:

if the ice surface size is a problem, what happens when it's bigger?

teams play a one-man-in, four-men-back system. watch euro hockey. ugly stuff. reminds a lot of soccer. more wide open space makes coaches more cautious.

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