The other side of that coin is that Bossy was at the very top of that Canadian-dominated league. There was a period of almost a decade where the only player scoring more goals than Bossy was Wayne Gretzky; in a Gretzky-less league, Bossy would have had a goal scoring lead similar to a Richard or Ovechkin type figure.
And that was a league that included the great Europeans Kurri and Stastny.
Longevity would be the main argument I'd made for Selanne over Bossy. The second argument would be that Bossy was only a goal scorer whereas Teemu was more rounded.
I think Bossy might have been the better defensive player but that would be a minor point to the career argument.
If only Orr, Lindros, Forsberg, Neely had been healthy and the Russians came over when their talent allowed, and not their politics it would be a very interesting landscape indeed.
Are you taking into account that Al Arbour didn't allow his forwards to sacrifice defense for offense, while Selanne was one of the few forwards in the dead puck era (along with Kariya, Jagr, Bure) who was allowed to think all-offense?
That would hurt Selanne's production some, but the real question is whether Selanne could have scored big goals in the playoffs, and how Bossy would fare without the luster that goes with being part of a dynasty, esp. in a high-scoring era. A lot of people talk like Bossy could have gone on forever scoring 50 goals every year, regardless of era, age or injuries. It just seems to me that if Bossy played a few more injury-plagued years in his 30s, and had played his career for a more typical team, his career might have looked a lot like Selanne's or Brett Hull's.
Yeah, it's always an interesting thought experiment to have the players trade places. If Selanne was on Trottier's wing and Bossy was playing for the sad sack expansion Ducks, would Bossy still be viewed as clearly the better player? I highly doubt it.
I dunno. Bossy with modern (or even circa 1994) training and a composite stick is a scary thought.
How is Bossy only a goal scorer if he has 83 assists in a season to lead his team in front of Trottier and is 4th in the league?
He's only got 20 more goals than assist
If only he had come remotely close to duplicating that number in any other season, we could say it was representative of his overall ability rather than a one-off at the peak of several teammates' careers.
The fact that he has 20 more goals than assists puts him in pretty exclusive company as a pure goal scorer. The only players with 500+ goals who scored more than 20 more goals than assists are:
And then you consider, how many guys on that list spent their career skating on a line with a goal scoring threat the likes of Trottier?
Many list lots of Canadian players from 50's-70's in their top 40 lists.
No offence to Canadians, but there seems to be little bias. Couple of seasons ago
some were still arguing that Iginla has better career and he is higher than Teemu in all time list. And Teemu is not 1st ballot HoFer. That's insane. If Teemu was Canadian people would probably consider him at least as a top 15 player. And I am a Finn
It comes pretty much how do you value different generations.
If you take only players who played during 1990-2013, Teemu has been a best among his competition.
He has no Individual trophies and only 1 cup because he played same time as many of the all time top 10 forwards and he played in poor teams. He has lost 2 Art Ross trophies to Mario Lemieux and Jaromir Jagr "(Who both are somewhat statistical anomalies and certainly a lot better competition that some art ross winners have had)"
He is all time leading Olympic scorer, and won the whole scoring in 98 and 06. And these were best of the best olympics.
Not top 10, but magnificent player throughout his whole career. Extraordinary career peak and long productive career.