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The History of Hockey Relive great moments in hockey history and discuss how the game has changed over time.

Most popular players of all time?

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Old
06-02-2005, 12:26 AM
  #1
kmad
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Most popular players of all time?

I'd give the nod to Maurice Richard. Gretzky was great, but people didn't have a place in their hearts for Gretzky as they did for Richard.

Pavel Bure and Guy Lafleur would probably be my runners up.

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06-02-2005, 01:00 AM
  #2
MiamiScreamingEagles
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Gordie Howe and Stevie Y., especially in Detroit.

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Old
06-02-2005, 01:31 AM
  #3
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Sakic,lemieux,jagr.

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06-02-2005, 02:30 AM
  #4
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Old
06-02-2005, 07:08 AM
  #5
mcphee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmad
I'd give the nod to Maurice Richard. Gretzky was great, but people didn't have a place in their hearts for Gretzky as they did for Richard.

Pavel Bure and Guy Lafleur would probably be my runners up.
By popular, I guess you have to consider their popularity outside of the city they played in. By that criteria, Beliveau and Orr come to mind. There's always going to be those who nit pick the great ones, so Gretzky and Lemieux had detractors. Jagr isn't widely loved,too many episodes of loafing over the last 5-6 years. Lafleur was loved everywhere outside of the state of Massachussetts. Richard's a true legend in every sense of the word, and his legend is loved. I suspect 50's fans in Toronto hated his guts. I hate to say that it his to be an older guy, but there's so much scrutiny now, that we see all the warts on these guys and there aren't heroes anymore,at least perceived heroes. It's hard to surpass Gilmour's early 90's popularity in Toronto, but again, that's Toronto. Guess, I stay with Orr and Beliveau. If you have something against either of those 2, you probably spend a lot of time alone scheming about ways to sue your neighbours.

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06-02-2005, 07:32 AM
  #6
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With very, very few exceptions (like Beliveau and maybe Gilmour), I don't think you can really put any Leaf or Hab on this list. Those are the 2 most popular AND most hated teams in hockey, so that kind of cancels each either other out.

Bobby Orr is a good choice, though. Bobby Hull, too.

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06-02-2005, 07:34 AM
  #7
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I was at the 1987 draft in Detroit and it was just about to start...there was a fair bit of noise and then one man walked in at the far end of the floor. It was as though time stood still for a moment and every head in the building turned in respect...and then the draft began.

He also came to the building where I work a few years back for an autograph session. There was a fair crowd waiting as his limo pulled up and when he entered everyone gave him a spontaneous standing o' (many of whom, probably too young to have even seen him play). The man still appeared to be in great shape.

My vote would go to Mr Hockey.

Edit: An honourable mention to Jean Beliveau, maybe the classiest player to ever play in the NHL.


Last edited by Chili: 06-02-2005 at 07:48 AM.
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Old
06-02-2005, 10:29 AM
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmad
I'd give the nod to Maurice Richard. Gretzky was great, but people didn't have a place in their hearts for Gretzky as they did for Richard.

Pavel Bure and Guy Lafleur would probably be my runners up.
I disagreee.

#1 Orr, #2 Gretzky #3 Richard

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Old
06-02-2005, 12:37 PM
  #9
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Here are some off the top of my head.

Bobby Hull - He had everything, good looks, great shot, could lift you out of your seat, was a very likable player

Lanny McDonald - He was loved especially where he played but also outside of where he played. Everyone always thinks of that long moustache when we think of him and you couldnt help but love the guy

Guy Lafleur - Even Don Cherry loved him although he was the reason his Bruins got beaten so much. You couldnt help but like him, the way he skated so fluidly

Joe Sakic - I think everyone likes him even outside of Colorado. He's a quiet superstar a future Hall of Famer, has never said negative things to the media, never gotten into the dirty things of Hockey. Oh and I hear he's quite the player too, with a great wrist shot

Steve Yzerman - I dont think anyone hates this guy. After all of the injuries he's had recently like playing hurt in the '02 playoffs and Olympics. He's a competitor and a champion and I think most people were happy to see him lift the Cup over his head. Also his injury a year ago to his eye really struck home with people. When Stevie Y is hurt people notice

HM goes to Rocket Richard, Gordie Howe and Bobby Orr. Either one of these three demand respect wherever they go (or in Richards case went). Gretzky and Lemieux also had too many haters I think. Most people love them but with Gretzky you'd get stuff like "he's a wimp", or "he wont fight," and with Lemieux it was that he "whined" or something like that.

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Old
06-02-2005, 03:45 PM
  #10
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Gotta be Beliveau.

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Old
06-02-2005, 04:32 PM
  #11
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06-02-2005, 06:05 PM
  #12
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#1- Maurice Richard- The Richard Riot says it all, for me anyway.
#2- Guy Lafleur
#3- Jean Beliveau
#4- Bobby Orr
#5- Gordie Howe
HM- Wayne Gretzky, Steve Yzerman, Joe Sakic, Lanny McDonald, Eddie Shack, Doug Gilmour, & Wendel Clark

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Old
06-02-2005, 09:34 PM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bring Back Bucky
Everybody loves Bucky
not 99 eh?

I agree with Big Steve's #1-5 and would add Mario post chemo. In 85 when Richard scored on Plante during the alltime team introductions, i never heard the Forum crowd scream like that ; it wasnt an ovation it was a scream.

Guy Guy Guy...... was there too in every rink in the nhl including Boston.

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Old
06-02-2005, 11:34 PM
  #14
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It has to be the Rocket or Gretzky...

Gretzky because he is the best ever. Not only was he the best, but he was playing it like a kid would play it in the street. The guy loved the game more than everyone I seen. A lovable superstar.

The Rocket was more than every other hockey player ever was. He is a national hero. When the Quebec was in the dark, he was the one who standup proud for everyone against the english domination, without giving an inch. You just couldn't stop him or he would go right through you. Three guys on his back, semi-inconsious, tired to death, sick, injured, nothing of that mattered for the "Roi de Glace", it was all about winning and scoring goals. And he was damn successfull at this winning stuff, getting 8 stanley cup ring. The whole nation was following him, you just have to look at the Richard Riot that is widely considered by historian as the sparkplug for the quiet revolution that make what Quebec is today. When a hockey player is a close runner up for the most influencal man of the century in a province with 7 millions habitants it's saying it all.

He's a legend, a hero, an icon. They make book for kids saying to follow the rocket example of determination. Lafleur and Belliveau doesnt even come close. Gretzky may, though...


Last edited by CoupeStanley: 06-02-2005 at 11:50 PM.
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Old
06-03-2005, 03:26 AM
  #15
Kimi
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I think it's Orr or Howe.

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Old
06-03-2005, 07:07 AM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimi3013
I think it's Orr or Howe.
Howe is a nasty old man and was one of the dirtiest players ever. I doubt that he is much loved.

There is no single answer to the question. For people who have watched the game for a long time, the most popular player would almost certainly Beliveau or Richard.

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Old
06-03-2005, 07:18 AM
  #17
mcphee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnie
Howe is a nasty old man and was one of the dirtiest players ever. I doubt that he is much loved.

There is no single answer to the question. For people who have watched the game for a long time, the most popular player would almost certainly Beliveau or Richard.
Nasty old man ? Does he live in your street ? Stiff you on Halloween ? He was a dirty player to an extent. He'd do something once to send a message and be left alone, unlike real dirty players who take cheap shots gratuitously.[Is that a word ?]

The thing I like about Beliveau is that 34 years after he retired, you still don't hear a negative word about him. Out of respect, a journalist would never tread into his personal life uninvited. No one else commands that.

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Old
06-03-2005, 08:38 AM
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcphee
Nasty old man ? Does he live in your street ? Stiff you on Halloween ? He was a dirty player to an extent. He'd do something once to send a message and be left alone, unlike real dirty players who take cheap shots gratuitously.[Is that a word ?]

The thing I like about Beliveau is that 34 years after he retired, you still don't hear a negative word about him. Out of respect, a journalist would never tread into his personal life uninvited. No one else commands that.
How was only really nasty when provoked. Many have said that when they were against the boards or not paying attention the would hear a "Look out!" just before Howe would hit them so they would have some chance to defend themselves. It should be said though this didn't apply to rookies or tough guys. But Gordie always did this to other stars of his time like Beliveau because he understood the value of those players to the league.

There is something about Beliveau. Even Bruin fans are hard pressed to come up with something. Hell even Harry Sinden once said "It would be like desecrating a monument." When Brad Park came in the league and hehit Beliveau with a clean check and knocked him down, Park's own mother wouldn't speak to him for a week. I don't know if he was as loved and revered as much as Rocket, but I thik he was and is more respected. He still is Le Capitaine.

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Old
06-03-2005, 08:39 AM
  #19
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Originally Posted by chooch
Guy Guy Guy...... was there too in every rink in the nhl including Boston.
I can assure you that there were no "Guy, Guy, Guy" chants at the Spectrum.

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Old
06-03-2005, 10:08 AM
  #20
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Orr and Beliveau are probably the only two realistic choices.

Gretzky and Lemieux are both put down by the opposing's fans, it seems(though Orr fans get in on it as well), and Richard isn't cared for in any of the cities the Habs were rivals with in his time, and I'd bet that a lot of English Speaking Canada doesn't think to fondly of him.

Beliveau is the only Hab who could possibly be admired in places like Boston, Toronto, Quebec, etc.

Orr revolutionized the game, and he's always been amazing with fans, he'll stop to take a picture with anyone at any time, and that's why he's loved so much.

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06-03-2005, 09:08 PM
  #21
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I rarely see anybody say anything bad about Bobby Orr or Rocket Richard or Gordie Howe or Jean Beliveau. But it's more respect then popularity although its more a mixture of both. But if you want popularity you can't go wrong with someone like Guy Lafleur or a Pavel Bure or Lindros before his injury or Mike Bossy. In the 70-s wherever you went you would hear Guy Guy Guy chants... in airports eveywhere people would come asking for autographs. Fans in Vancouver, Winnipeg and even Edmonton used to chant Guy Guy Guy it was just amazing.

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Old
06-04-2005, 01:00 AM
  #22
Stephen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KOVALEV10
I rarely see anybody say anything bad about Bobby Orr or Rocket Richard or Gordie Howe or Jean Beliveau. But it's more respect then popularity although its more a mixture of both. But if you want popularity you can't go wrong with someone like Guy Lafleur or a Pavel Bure or Lindros before his injury or Mike Bossy. In the 70-s wherever you went you would hear Guy Guy Guy chants... in airports eveywhere people would come asking for autographs. Fans in Vancouver, Winnipeg and even Edmonton used to chant Guy Guy Guy it was just amazing.
I disagree with your inclusion of Lindros.

He has been a very controversial figure ever since he refused to play for Quebec and demanded a trade as an 18 year old. He is also disliked by many because of his family as well.

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Old
06-04-2005, 01:54 AM
  #23
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Gretzky has had the most influence on the pop culture -- he hosted Saturday Night Live! His autobiography was a best-seller. Lionized in his own time.

Orr was the game's best player. He dominated everywhere on the ice, knifing through defenders, scoring, backchecking, wheeling forward.

As for which players were the most liked, I have no historical depth of knowledge to answer that.

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Old
06-04-2005, 12:58 PM
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yammer
Gretzky has had the most influence on the pop culture.


there's a new one.

Before it became obvious all those sunny south teams were basically fanless, his supporters would try to give 99 credit for spreading the game in the US.

99 had no influence on anything. He was too much of an image and hype guy , keeping salaries down, not supporting the older players in the pension fight etc.

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Old
06-04-2005, 02:17 PM
  #25
Malefic74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chooch


there's a new one.

Before it became obvious all those sunny south teams were basically fanless, his supporters would try to give 99 credit for spreading the game in the US.

99 had no influence on anything. He was too much of an image and hype guy , keeping salaries down, not supporting the older players in the pension fight etc.
Of your 283 gem-like posts to these boards, have you said anything OTHER than denigrate Gretzky? By now everybody on these boards has gotten the point that you hate the man for some reason.

Fine.

Let it go.

You're not going to convince any of his fans to your point of view despite these repeated attacks. It's an effort in futility. But if it makes you feel more important, better and smarter than all us sheep who appreciate 99 than go right ahead.

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