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What is the greatest single-season NHL team ever assembled?

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Old
06-13-2013, 08:04 PM
  #26
Canadiens1958
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1951-52 Red Wings

Overlooked in the discussion, the 1951-52 Detroit Red Wings. Also a 100PT regular season, one fewer win, two more ties.

http://www.hockey-reference.com/teams/DET/1952.html

Compared to the 1955-56 Canadiens it comes down to three considerations. Relative strength of the other teams in the league that specific season. Ability to overcome adversity - injuries, aging, retirements. Future - setting a foundation for the following seasons.

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06-13-2013, 08:13 PM
  #27
TheDevilMadeMe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Overlooked in the discussion, the 1951-52 Detroit Red Wings. Also a 100PT regular season, one fewer win, two more ties.

http://www.hockey-reference.com/teams/DET/1952.html

Compared to the 1955-56 Canadiens it comes down to three considerations. Relative strength of the other teams in the league that specific season. Ability to overcome adversity - injuries, aging, retirements. Future - setting a foundation for the following seasons.
The 1951-52 Wings were awesome and undoubtedly had a better first unit than Montreal (with the Production Line), but they didn't have anything close to the depth of Montreal. After the Production Line, Detroits forwards were mainly checkers, as was common back then. Montreal had Hall of Famers as all their top 6 forwards, all of them in their prime, and Ken Mosdell, not far removed from being a 1st Team All Star as their 3rd line center.

I also think the NHL talent pool hadn't completely recovered from the effects of World War 2 until the mid 50s when the Beliveau generation came around.

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06-13-2013, 08:37 PM
  #28
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Originally Posted by eva unit zero View Post
The 1995-96 Wings should be high on anyone's list.

Bolded have been inducted into the HHOF. Italicized have a good shot. Underlined were considered among the best at their position as of 95-96.

Kozlov/Larionov/Fedorov
Errey/Yzerman/McCarty
Johnson/Primeau/Ciccarelli
Brown/Taylor/Lapointe

Lidstrom/Coffey
Fetisov/Konstantinov
Bergevin/Rouse

Osgood
Vernon
I remember the 90s Wings being good, but damn. That's just hilariously stacked.

The top 4 of Lidstrom, Coffey, Fetisov and Konstantinov is one of the most impressive d cores I've ever seen. Coffey, Lidstrom and Konstantinov all finished top 6 in Norris voting.

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06-13-2013, 08:43 PM
  #29
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Comparables

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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
The 1951-52 Wings were awesome and undoubtedly had a better first unit than Montreal (with the Production Line), but they didn't have anything close to the depth of Montreal. After the Production Line, Detroits forwards were mainly checkers, as was common back then. Montreal had Hall of Famers as all their top 6 forwards, all of them in their prime, and Ken Mosdell, not far removed from being a 1st Team All Star as their 3rd line center.

I also think the NHL talent pool hadn't completely recovered from the effects of World War 2 until the mid 50s when the Beliveau generation came around.
The 1955-56 Canadiens first line - Beliveau, Olmstead, Geoffrion outscored the 1951-52 Production Line in a few fewer man games.

Wings had the edge in the core four defensemen - Kelly, Pronovost, Goldham, Reise over Harvey, Johnson, St.Laurent, Talbot. Bouchard was a part timer, retiring at the end of the season.

Remaining forwards were a plus for the Canadiens especially if we allow that beyond the top line none had career/prime years while the point may be made that some of the Wing support forwards were in their prime - Prystai, Pavelich.

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06-13-2013, 09:02 PM
  #30
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Ya thats a good one. 51/52 Red Wings.... Swept all 8 games on their way to the Cup, Sawchuk recording 4 straight Shutouts in a series. Noted mention of Metro Prystai as well. Interesting player as he could score as well as check, starting out on a line with Howe when first acquired by Detroit from Chicago but then assigned to a checking line full time with Pavelich & Leswick. Scored 2 goals and added an assist in the final game... rather oddly, got traded back to Chicago where he played for 2 years, then traded back to Detroit yet again where he wound down his career by about 58 with a final stint in the minors.

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06-13-2013, 10:17 PM
  #31
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Originally Posted by Killion View Post
Metro Prystai... rather oddly, got traded back to Chicago where he played for 2 years, then traded back to Detroit yet again
"Trader" Jack Adams at work!

"Hey, I want this guy! Nah, you can have him back. Wait, I need him back!!"

Holland's post-lockout retread activity (Osgood, Bertuzzi, Quincey, Samuelsson, Conklin, Knuble tryout offer, attempt to sign Fleischmann) is reminiscent of Adams. Except Holland's not a ******* nutter when it comes to player treatment (he doesn't trade his best players away for stupid reasons; see Red Kelly and Ted Lindsay).

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06-13-2013, 10:48 PM
  #32
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Originally Posted by eva unit zero View Post
The 1995-96 Wings should be high on anyone's list.

Bolded have been inducted into the HHOF. Italicized have a good shot. Underlined were considered among the best at their position as of 95-96.

Kozlov/Larionov/Fedorov
Errey/Yzerman/McCarty
Johnson/Primeau/Ciccarelli
Brown/Taylor/Lapointe

Lidstrom/Coffey
Fetisov/Konstantinov
Bergevin/Rouse

Osgood
Vernon
This is what I was thinking as well, but it's hard to pin down exactly which Red wing team had the best mix with the best ages as well.

Those NYI teams in the early 80's had great chemistry as well.

01 Avs were very impressive as well with some all time greats in their prime and a rejuvenated Ray Bourque who was in a perfect situation there.

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06-14-2013, 06:33 AM
  #33
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Originally Posted by eva unit zero View Post
"Trader" Jack Adams at work!

"Hey, I want this guy! Nah, you can have him back. Wait, I need him back!!"
Back in the 50's and 60's, the NHL was known as the Norris House League, as the Norris family owned or had interest in Chicago, Detroit and New York.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vau...ne/MAG1132956/

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06-14-2013, 07:18 AM
  #34
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Ibc

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Originally Posted by mbhhofr View Post
Back in the 50's and 60's, the NHL was known as the Norris House League, as the Norris family owned or had interest in Chicago, Detroit and New York.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vau...ne/MAG1132956/
OT. Actually the Norris Family had influence in all O6 cities via their boxing -IBC interests or wrestling contacts:

Montreal/Boston - Eddie Quinn

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eddie_Quinn

In 1961 after the Moore/Cleroux fiasco, Frank Selke Sr. was very supportive of Eddie Quinn.

Toronto/Detroit - Frank Tunney

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Tunney

International Boxing Club - Norris & Wirtz

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_...ub_of_New_York

Note the overlap between the control of arenas/venues in the six NHL cities and the key IBC cities.

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06-14-2013, 03:01 PM
  #35
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Yeah, nevermind, I didn't realize they had six hall of fame defensemen on one team. LOL
Plus probably the best coach of all time

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06-14-2013, 04:00 PM
  #36
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I think the team has to win it all before being discussed here don't you think? No 1996 Red Wings for that matter. And as much as we are tempted, no 1971 Bruins either. Teams that should have won are teams that did NOT win when all was said and done. If we are going to pick a Bruins team from that era the 1972 Bruins fit a nice bill.

Other teams:

1982 Islanders: 4 legitimate HHOFers in Bossy, Trottier, Potvin and Smith
The next bumper crop that added tons of depth: Tonelli, Gillies, Sutter (both), Nystrom, Bourne, Goring.

Tops in the NHL with 118 points and in the middle of their dynasty. Plus they were the best Isles team in that run. Had a scare against Pittsburgh, but as great teams do they still came out on top.

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06-14-2013, 05:15 PM
  #37
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Dick Irvin's Toronto Maple Leafs went ot the Stanley Cup Finals 7 times in 9 years, with the 1932 championship team kicking off the run: Joe Primeau, Charlie Conacher, Busher Jackson as an HHOF first line, King Clancy, Red Horner and Hap Day on the blueline with TIME magazine's first hockey player on its cover in net with Lorne Chabot, who had already won a cup with the Rangers back in '28. The team also had all-time great Frank Finnigan, Syd Howe (as a youth, in a limited role), Alex Levinsky, with a strong supporting cast of Bob Gracie, Baldy Cotton, Harrold Darragh and cup-winning goal scorer Ace Bailey, the guy who the next season Eddie Shore crippled on the ice, setting up the Charity Benefit Game that was the first NHL all-star game.


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06-14-2013, 08:16 PM
  #38
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Interesting Suggestion

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Originally Posted by VanIslander View Post
Dick Irvin's Toronto Maple Leafs went ot the Stanley Cup Finals 7 times in 9 years, with the 1932 championship team kicking off the run: Joe Primeau, Charlie Conacher, Busher Jackson as an HHOF first line, King Clancy, Red Horner and Hap Day on the blueline with TIME magazine's first hockey player on its cover in net with Lorne Chabot, who had already won a cup with the Rangers back in '28. The team also had all-time great Frank Finnigan, Syd Howe (as a youth, in a limited role), Alex Levinsky, with a strong supporting cast of Bob Gracie, Baldy Cotton, Harrold Darragh and cup-winning goal scorer Ace Bailey, the guy who the next season Eddie Shore crippled on the ice, setting up the Charity Benefit Game that was the first NHL all-star game.

Interesting suggestion. Perhaps the most influential team due to a huge marketing and media presence led by Foster Hewitt and Wes McKnight. Produced some excellent coaches - Day and Primeau who surpassed their mentor.

Question their goaltending. Chabot vs Sawchuk, Plante, Dryden, Smith. #1 center Primeau vs Abel, Beliveau, Lemaire, Trottier. Do the other strengths compensate enough?

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06-14-2013, 09:07 PM
  #39
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Interesting suggestion. Perhaps the most influential team due to a huge marketing and media presence led by Foster Hewitt and Wes McKnight.
Smythe was really peaking then, top of his game from a managerial perspective, ahead of the rest of the league & curve which at that time I believe beyond one or two other teams was weak. He personally had "skin in the game", his own money, micro-managing absolutely everything, a will to win that that gave Toronto the edge, giving birth as well to the Legend of Conn Smythe & the Toronto Maple Leafs, Maple Leaf Gardens itself with Foster Hewitts broadcasts from coast to coast.

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06-14-2013, 09:09 PM
  #40
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Originally Posted by Cursed Lemon View Post
My woefully ig'nant guesses would be:

1. 1984 Edmonton Oilers
2. 2002 Detroit Red Wings
3. 1989 Calgary Flames

What say you all?
'76 Habs....Hockey News had a vote on this a few years ago

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10-04-2013, 12:24 PM
  #41
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2002 Red Wings, GOAT?

I'm sure threads like this have been posted on here 9,000 times, but after watching Hull drop the puck last night at the Blues game it got me reminiscing about the 2002 Wings and how amazing it was watching that team night I and night out. The roster had 9 sure fire hall of farmers in Hull, Yzerman, Shanahan, Robatille, Larionov, Hasek, Lidstrom, Chelios and Fedorov; and one likely hall of farmer in Datsyuk as a rookie. It also had one of the best 4th lines ever with Maltby, Draper and McCarty and the master of the net front presence in Tomas Holmstrom. If that wasn't enough for you they were helmed by Scotty Bowman.

The league needed a salary cap, and maybe I'm biased, but it was really cool to see a team filled with that many legends. It's something that we will probably never see again. So, with that said how do you rank this team amongst the all time greats? I'd say the only knock against them is their age, but other than that this may be it. If not the greatest team, at least the greatest roster card to stare at before a game. Thoughts?

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10-04-2013, 12:50 PM
  #42
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It was a great team for sure and perhaps 1 of the best Cup champs since the turn of the century, that said the GOAT team would be the 1976-1977 Montreal Canadiens.

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10-04-2013, 06:23 PM
  #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintPatrick33 View Post
1. '76-'77 Montreal Canadiens AINEC
From what I saw.....this^ (and I'm a Bruins fan).

This was a power packed team.....damn there was some real wars wioth my Bruins back then.

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10-04-2013, 07:20 PM
  #44
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Seems like they couldn't be too high on the list, simply because of the seventh word of the question being asked.

How good do they have to be in order to ignore the fact that they aren't an NHL team?

Once we get that out of the way, it seems like a team spanning seven seasons (1981 to 1988) would fail the "single-season" test.
I think you handled this well

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10-04-2013, 08:17 PM
  #45
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A few years back, I tried to mathematically determine the answer to this question by looking more at "what" and less at "who". Basically, it was a formula that measured marginal goals for and against, normalized both marginal goals and games played to historical averages, then adjusted again via my competitive balance formula.

The idea was that it would put everyone on equal footing, rather than skewing heavily based on leaguewide offensive conditions (like the 80s) or massive competitive imbalance (like the 70s). By using marginal goals for and against instead of points, it eliminated a lot of that luck factor that can come into play as well.

The top 10 teams using this method came back as:
1) 1958-59 Montreal
2) 2007-08 Detroit
3) 1988-89 Calgary
4) 1967-68 Montreal
5) 1957-58 Montreal
6) 1976-77 Montreal
7) 1931-32 Toronto
8) 1949-50 Detroit
9) 1986-87 Edmonton
10) 1959-60 Montreal

The unadjusted top 10 looks quite a bit different, and more like what most lists would be. I figure that it's because these were the most dominant teams, but they happened to do it in leagues that weren't anything close to competitive. That top 10 is:
1) 1976-77 Montreal
2) 1977-78 Montreal
3) 1938-39 Boston
4) 1943-44 Montreal
5) 1975-76 Montreal
6) 1928-29 Boston
7) 1972-73 Montreal
8) 1971-72 Boston
9) 1940-41 Boston
10) 1955-56 Montreal

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Old
10-05-2013, 02:55 AM
  #46
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The Red Army team that trampled an NHL team that was treating the game like an exhibition ala preseason. Seed them into the Stanley Cup playoffs where the games actually matter and the Red Army team gets squashed like roaches.
I doubt that very much, but yes, that one game hardly proves that CSKA was better than the Oilers. And even though the 1985-86 tour was the most succesful one by CSKA, Quebec Nordiques did beat them 5-1. However, CSKA had a VERY tight (almost 'unfair') schedual and deserve some credit for their performances.

The Oilers were missing e.g. Messier and Tikkanen, and CSKA was missing Larionov but had a couple of extra players from other clubs like Tyumenev and Shepelev on their lineup.

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10-05-2013, 02:57 AM
  #47
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Those best Habs and Red Wings teams would be at the top of my list.

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10-05-2013, 06:26 AM
  #48
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Originally Posted by dtones520 View Post
I'm sure threads like this have been posted on here 9,000 times, but after watching Hull drop the puck last night at the Blues game it got me reminiscing about the 2002 Wings and how amazing it was watching that team night I and night out. The roster had 9 sure fire hall of farmers in Hull, Yzerman, Shanahan, Robatille, Larionov, Hasek, Lidstrom, Chelios and Fedorov; and one likely hall of farmer in Datsyuk as a rookie. It also had one of the best 4th lines ever with Maltby, Draper and McCarty and the master of the net front presence in Tomas Holmstrom. If that wasn't enough for you they were helmed by Scotty Bowman.

The league needed a salary cap, and maybe I'm biased, but it was really cool to see a team filled with that many legends. It's something that we will probably never see again. So, with that said how do you rank this team amongst the all time greats? I'd say the only knock against them is their age, but other than that this may be it. If not the greatest team, at least the greatest roster card to stare at before a game. Thoughts?
Most of those players were well past their prime....that team never made dynasty status

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10-05-2013, 01:57 PM
  #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdd View Post
The 1995-96 Wings should be high on anyone's list.

Bolded have been inducted into the HHOF. Italicized have a good shot. Underlined were considered among the best at their position as of 95-96.

Kozlov/Larionov/Fedorov
Errey/Yzerman/McCarty
Johnson/Primeau/Ciccarelli
Brown/Taylor/Lapointe

Lidstrom/Coffey
Fetisov/Konstantinov
Bergevin/Rouse

Osgood
Vernon
As Big Phil said before, don't you think they should have at least won the SC that year before being considered one of the greatest teams of all time. After all, it's the SC or nothing right?

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10-05-2013, 03:38 PM
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cursed Lemon View Post
My woefully ig'nant guesses would be:

1. 1984 Edmonton Oilers
2. 2002 Detroit Red Wings
3. 1989 Calgary Flames

What say you all?
87 Oilers were their best squadron, methinks, with Esa Tikkanen, Steve Smith, Kent Nilsson, Craig MacTavish, Reijio Ruotsalainen, Mark Napier, Mike Krushelnyski, Marty McSorley & Craig Muni added to the core 84 lineup of Gretzky, Coffey, Kurri, Messier, Fuhr, Anderson, Lowe & company

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