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Gretzky, Lemieux and their superpowers

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Old
07-26-2013, 10:05 PM
  #51
tazzy19
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
In the end it's almost always a bit of both. The NHL also hasn't been the same since the early 80's with the changes in the way the game is played, defensive systems, increased player pool, goaltending....ect so your last point doesn't really apply all that much.
I think you must have missed the part where I said, "Considering that history never created another "Great One" -- even on the so called "perfect storm" of the 80s Oilers." The fact is, the 80s didn't have today's "changes, defensive systems, increased player pools, goaltending, etc" as you say, yet that very same 80s decade did not create another "Great One" -- not even on the same 80s Oilers team that Gretzky played on, which had several of the top playoff scorers of all time. If it was such a perfect storm, and Gretzky was merely a by-product of his time as you say, how come Gretzky was the only guy to destroy all the previous records? How come no one was able to steal any of his 9 Hart Trophies in that 10 year span? Therefore my point still stands.

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07-26-2013, 10:14 PM
  #52
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I've said it before and I'll say until they shovel dirt on me: Gretzky wasn't the product of a "perfect storm", Gretzky WAS the "perfect storm".

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07-27-2013, 01:37 AM
  #53
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Originally Posted by tazzy19 View Post
I think you must have missed the part where I said, "Considering that history never created another "Great One" -- even on the so called "perfect storm" of the 80s Oilers." The fact is, the 80s didn't have today's "changes, defensive systems, increased player pools, goaltending, etc" as you say, yet that very same 80s decade did not create another "Great One" -- not even on the same 80s Oilers team that Gretzky played on, which had several of the top playoff scorers of all time. If it was such a perfect storm, and Gretzky was merely a by-product of his time as you say, how come Gretzky was the only guy to destroy all the previous records? How come no one was able to steal any of his 9 Hart Trophies in that 10 year span? Therefore my point still stands.
where did I ever say that he was merely a by-product of his time?

Both Orr and Wayne are all time greats period full stop.

Both players stats, and by inference their greatness is enhanced or even exaggerated at times by overlooking the perfect storms they were in.

Part of the perfect storms were outside forces, expansion and dilution of the talent pool and other forces were driven by them, ie their elite ability to create offense.

We can't measure these affects but we should at least acknowledge them.

Either way it's an endless circle, most everyone agrees that Wayne is the best forward of all time and some just can't acknowledged any mention of the perfect storm, for some unknown reasons.

It's not a hard concept, neither guy as great as they were would be able to dominate statistically in another storm if coached by a guy like Hitch in the post lockout era.

No I can't prove it, no one here can really prove anything, but there are tons of reasons and evidence to suggest why this would most probably be true.

I'll leave it at that.

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07-27-2013, 01:48 AM
  #54
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Coffey was a faster skater.
...Coffey was a faster skater than Bure?

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07-27-2013, 10:55 AM
  #55
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
where did I ever say that he was merely a by-product of his time?

Both Orr and Wayne are all time greats period full stop.

Both players stats, and by inference their greatness is enhanced or even exaggerated at times by overlooking the perfect storms they were in.

Part of the perfect storms were outside forces, expansion and dilution of the talent pool and other forces were driven by them, ie their elite ability to create offense.

We can't measure these affects but we should at least acknowledge them.

Either way it's an endless circle, most everyone agrees that Wayne is the best forward of all time and some just can't acknowledged any mention of the perfect storm, for some unknown reasons.

It's not a hard concept, neither guy as great as they were would be able to dominate statistically in another storm if coached by a guy like Hitch in the post lockout era.

No I can't prove it, no one here can really prove anything, but there are tons of reasons and evidence to suggest why this would most probably be true.

I'll leave it at that.
Here is your quote:
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
It's like the big fish story, Gretzky seems to get even better the farther away we look at him, when in fact part of his dominance was a perfect storm of the times.
"The big fish story" is about something being much bigger than it actually is. But when you have a player actually winning 20 MVPs in 10 years (9 Harts, 2 Conn Smythes, 5 Pearsons, 1 Canada Cup MVP, 1 Rendez-vous MVP, and 2 All-star MVPs), that is no "big fish". That, my friend, is a real life whale that transcends era. Sometimes I wonder what more Gretzky would have had to have done to not be a "big fish" in the eyes of some people. If he had won 50 MVPs instead of 20, and broken 500 records instead of 61, he would have been an even bigger "big fish". There really is no winning and no pleasing the nay-sayers when it comes to Gretzky.


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07-28-2013, 07:41 AM
  #56
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Sure you have to place players in the context of their era, but alot of people don't do so for either Orr or Wayne.

I have covered this ground before and both guys played in rapidly expanding eras with almost exclusively all Canadian only players.

The reality of the matter is that too many people simply treat each era pretty much alike, either as a misrepresentation of the sticky or for some other reasons that don't really stand up to scrutiny.

Any way you slice it the NHL in 1965, 1974, 1983 and 1995 and beyond are quite different animals.




So it's fair to assume that Wayne would transcend time and if someone thinks he wouldn't they have to prove it?

Double standards at play here.

Wayne is the best player in history IMO, it's the superpower or exaggeration that I have a problem with.
All the canadian thing is overstated by you. The euros weren't in Gretzky's class either, none of them would have prevented his 200 point seasons and none of them would have scored 200 points. At the best on best tournaments, Gretzky completely dismantled them the same way he did the NHL. One again leading all players in scoring with his assists alone.

He was doing this as a 12 year old against 15 year olds. There was no perfect storm there as a 12 year old. He was the storm.

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07-28-2013, 07:49 AM
  #57
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Players train non-stop in the gym ect and are in the best shape of their lives. However, imo, they suffer in actual on ice practice. There is only so-much time in the day. What they gained in strength and conditioning they would have likely sacrificed in little in-game nuances that can only be mastered by repetition and practice, skill and talent.

I often wonder if all the gym rats really have an advantage at all over the guy who is out on a frozen pond playing hockey day and night and shooting pucks non stop.

I believe the 3rd/4th liners are faster/stronger, but not necessarily as skilled as previous players. A lot of them can skate, but not much else. Guys like Tom Pyatt litter the league, fast as hell, but pretty much terrible at playing hockey. Just an observation, working out all day won't make you a better hockey player, playing hockey will.


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07-28-2013, 07:58 AM
  #58
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All I am saying is that the game is not as different as many will claim.

I believe each generation or so (every 10 years you can say), the speed gets a bit faster, players become slightly more athletic, the skill becomes slightly more effective.

Its all slightly when your talking about every 10 years or so. Of course when you look at the 60s and the 90s, its a bit more different. But the game is not so different from the 80s to now.


I think the biggest issue today is the lack of hockey training. Yes. Especially for development of players. Back in the day the best players were the guys who played ICE HOCKEY all the time. There training was ice skating, ice skating, ice hockey, ice skating, some more hockey and a dabble of small fitness on the side or another sport.

Nowadays its hockey practice, hockey practice, game, weight room, game, rest day. Look at kids as they grow up. A whole study showed that kids on a Canadian youth team would be on the ice for about an hour, an hour and a half. In those 2 hours, kids averaged actually skating for no more than 15 minutes. They touched/practiced with the puck for no more than 5 minutes total. Too much time spent on coach talking, standing in line for a drill and sitting on the bench in a scrimmage.

Then the drive to practice and back, plus getting ready, took almost an hour and a half on average.

So in about 4 hours, your kid will only truly practice for 20 minutes at best.

Then they go home and do something else until next practice. Maybe 3 practices a week, 4 at best. Plus a game or two. Which was not much different.


Its kinda sad.

In the old days, who even Gretzky would attest to, everyone would spend hours upon hours at the ponds or nearby rink. Playing hockey almost every day during the winter, and as much as possible in the warm seasons. And guys like Gretzky and other Canadians have stated that they see less and less kids outside.

So its less and less time spent on the actual skill of the game. More time in the weight room or working out or worse- inside.
Excellent post and basically what I was saying, you described what I was trying to say much better than I.

Great post, often overlooked. I remember as a young boy, I played street hockey every day of my life. Didn't have to travel to play or wasn't limited to my time playing. We did everything, we cut a hole in the fence and put fish netting in the fence to catch the ball, it was the size of a catchers mitt. We were obsessed with playing hockey. My entire family was obsessed. I played as a 12 yr old against men and it prepared me more than most. We won the under 18 provincials 4 of 5 years and completely destroyed the ice hockey players that came from a system. We were more prepared than they were. I won nearly every scoring race of every tournament I ever played in, now I'm old and weak and would get completely schooled by the newer kids, however, imo, if we put our teams of back in the day up against the teams of today, we would still win 4 out of 5 years because there are few kids obsessed like we were.

I know ball-hockey with kids isn't the same thing as NHL hockey with pros, but the principles still apply.

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07-28-2013, 08:08 AM
  #59
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Just to play Devil's advocate here for a minute, Wayne Gretzky would need to make a commitment to strength training that he never had during his playing career to make use of his still-unparalleled hockey IQ. Smart guys who are tremendously weak don't have success any more. Even though he's way smarter than they are, he'd still need to do whatever it is your Crosbys and MSLs do to be enabled to use it. If he did so, he'd very likely be the league's best player again. But he would need to do it.

Mario, you could probably just drop his fat 80s butt as is into the league (Gretzky notwithstanding) and he'd win an art ross then celebrate it with a pack of camels, a cheeseburger and a box of wine. I mean, he'd still be the strongest center with the longest reach and best slapshot, even with how players have grown and dedicated themselves to conditioning.
Wayne's conditioning was phenomenal. It was a different type of conditioning, he didn't spend time in a gym getting in shape, he spent time playing hockey non stop which meant he was always in shape, game shape.

I don't think strength training would need to be a high priority for wayne at all. In the late 90's with a broken back and in his late 30's he still scored 90+ points. You could drop Gretzkyin the league today as a 20 year old without him making a single change to his physical stature and he would still eat the league alive.

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07-28-2013, 12:21 PM
  #60
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Wayne's conditioning was phenomenal. It was a different type of conditioning, he didn't spend time in a gym getting in shape, he spent time playing hockey non stop which meant he was always in shape, game shape.

I don't think strength training would need to be a high priority for wayne at all. In the late 90's with a broken back and in his late 30's he still scored 90+ points. You could drop Gretzkyin the league today as a 20 year old without him making a single change to his physical stature and he would still eat the league alive.
Totally agree. Wayne Gretzky, at age 30, on the Canada Cup 91 Team was skating circles around the best players in the world -- Russia, Sweden, you name it. That same player, brought in a time machine to 2013, would be winning scoring titles by 30- 50 points, and would be scoring 100+ assists per season today. Prime 24 year old Gretzky? He wouldn't need a gym.

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07-28-2013, 04:44 PM
  #61
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Totally agree. Wayne Gretzky, at age 30, on the Canada Cup 91 Team was skating circles around the best players in the world -- Russia, Sweden, you name it. That same player, brought in a time machine to 2013, would be winning scoring titles by 30- 50 points, and would be scoring 100+ assists per season today. Prime 24 year old Gretzky? He wouldn't need a gym.
Agreed, but the thing is, Gretzky didn't develop his talent in a gym, he developed his talent by playing non stop hockey against players who were his elders. He was a complete freak, the hardest working guy on the team and completely obsessed with not only playing hockey, but studying tendencies of other players, drawing graphs of where the puck is most likely to go ect ect. Being in top shape is important and Gretzky was in top game shape.

The game hasn't changed nearly as much in the last 10-15 years like people let on. If Wayne could score 90 points in 1998, there is no logical reason why he wouldn't be winning scoring races by massive amounts in a healthy prime today. The idea that the game has changed so much from 1997-98 to today that Gretzky would need to change his regimen to keep up is absurd. He'd be winning the scoring race almost uncontested every year during his prime. He would never lose to Corey Perry/Sedin in his prime, ever.

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07-29-2013, 08:31 PM
  #62
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Sure you have to place players in the context of their era, but alot of people don't do so for either Orr or Wayne.

I have covered this ground before and both guys played in rapidly expanding eras with almost exclusively all Canadian only players.

The reality of the matter is that too many people simply treat each era pretty much alike, either as a misrepresentation of the sticky or for some other reasons that don't really stand up to scrutiny.

Any way you slice it the NHL in 1965, 1974, 1983 and 1995 and beyond are quite different animals.
It hardly matters. We saw what each player did internationally. Orr in 1976 and Gretzky in (pick a Canada Cup). You're fishing the second you say "Well it was predominantly a Canadian only league". It doesn't matter. A great player is a great player regardless of their birthplace and Gretzky was not bettered by anyone, anywhere in his era until Lemieux finally caught up to him.

There is some footage you should watch:


Dick Beddoes thinks Sergei Shepelev is the best player in the world? In 1982 that was ridiculous. 30 years later it is downright laughable. Hardy, I've always felt you are in many ways Dick Beddoes on these boards.

Can we just say that once in a while great teams and great individuals come along in sports all the time regardless of era? Not that I am comparing Lebron James to Gretzky, but at this moment in a supposed era where no one can have a dynasty we are seeing the Heat with two championships in a row and three straight finals in a row. Why? Because they have a generational player that can dominate and his type doesn't come around much. Gretzky's type comes around even less frequently. I don't care what the era is, if the player is a superpower it'll show.

Quote:
So it's fair to assume that Wayne would transcend time and if someone thinks he wouldn't they have to prove it?

Double standards at play here.

Wayne is the best player in history IMO, it's the superpower or exaggeration that I have a problem with.
No, what I am saying is that the onus is on the person who claims he wouldn't dominate in this day and age. We saw what he did against some Hall of Fame players in his era with our own eyes. No one could stop him then either. Why would things change so much today? Gretzky would still keep opposing coaches up at night. He would do things in a 30 team league against mediocre defenses that would make our brains melt.

Your only evidence is that there hasn't been his kind since he retired. Well, there wasn't his kind beforehand either. Once Lemieux and Gretzky retired it didn't mean the game was passing by their kind of player, it was because their kind barely comes around. Maybe its Connor McDavid, who knows? But if he's good he'll dominate.

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07-30-2013, 01:45 AM
  #63
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Can we just say that once in a while great teams and great individuals come along in sports all the time regardless of era?
I read an artcle a couple of years ago, an interview actually with Mike Bossy (I'll try & dig up the link). Around 2011. He was asked if he thought it was possible that with todays far more defensive game, the way goaltenders play, if he thought he could score 50 goals in 50 games the way he did back in 81/82. His reply was along the lines of "I dont see why not. Thats like asking Wayne Gretzky if he could score 92. Id be shocked if he answered with anything other than yes".

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07-30-2013, 04:22 AM
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I read an artcle a couple of years ago, an interview actually with Mike Bossy (I'll try & dig up the link). Around 2011. He was asked if he thought it was possible that with todays far more defensive game, the way goaltenders play, if he thought he could score 50 goals in 50 games the way he did back in 81/82. His reply was along the lines of "I dont see why not. Thats like asking Wayne Gretzky if he could score 92. Id be shocked if he answered with anything other than yes".
Yeah but that whole theory of Mike's falls pretty instantly becouse Gretzky has on numerous occations, as a matter of fact as soon as he has gotten the chance said that it's impossible for players of today to copy him, and that he himself could not do it.
Mike Bossy really do sound like a "One trick pony".

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07-30-2013, 07:13 AM
  #65
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As all sports mature the ability to "dominate" over long periods of time become less likely.
exactly, look no further than the fact that five different players have won the NBA MVP for the past five years

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07-30-2013, 08:10 AM
  #66
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Yeah but that whole theory of Mike's falls pretty instantly becouse Gretzky has on numerous occations, as a matter of fact as soon as he has gotten the chance said that it's impossible for players of today to copy him, and that he himself could not do it.
Mike Bossy really do sound like a "One trick pony".
Gretzky is always exceedingly gracious to current players.

ie. Lemieux/Fedorov/Crosby/the kid in the 3rd row "will probably break my records"

He is very modest in public in contrast to how incredibly driven he actually is...

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07-30-2013, 08:28 AM
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Gretzky is always exceedingly gracious to current players.

ie. Lemieux/Fedorov/Crosby/the kid in the 3rd row "will probably break my records"

He is very modest in public in contrast to how incredibly driven he actually is...
I think the part of "and that he himself could not do it" is the most important one. That obviously means 215 points. He usually talks about how the game has changed, goalies and defensive game have become much better, players bigger.
As a matter of fact it is not exactly rocket science when seeing how much the scoring has fallen.

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07-30-2013, 09:54 AM
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I think the part of "and that he himself could not do it" is the most important one. That obviously means 215 points. He usually talks about how the game has changed, goalies and defensive game have become much better, players bigger.
As a matter of fact it is not exactly rocket science when seeing how much the scoring has fallen.
Prime 24 year old Gretzky today would not score 215 points, you are correct. He would instead peak at 175 or maybe 180 points. He would average around 167 points a year during his 5 year peak instead of the ridiculous 207 points he averaged between 1982-1986. That's a 40 point drop-off - so you are indeed correct. But 167 points a year is still beating 2nd best in the NHL by around 60 points! Total domination. (Edit: All of this assumes he is on a good team, of course.)

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07-30-2013, 10:25 AM
  #69
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I think the part of "and that he himself could not do it" is the most important one. That obviously means 215 points. He usually talks about how the game has changed, goalies and defensive game have become much better, players bigger.
As a matter of fact it is not exactly rocket science when seeing how much the scoring has fallen.
Sam Gagner scored 8 points against the Chicago Blackhawks. I think Gretzky would score just fine.

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07-30-2013, 10:36 AM
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Sam Gagner scored 8 points against the Chicago Blackhawks. I think Gretzky would score just fine.
Darryl Sittler scored 10 points against the 1975-76 Boston Bruins though, and he and Gretzky are allready neck to neck. Get in line Gagner.

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07-30-2013, 09:29 PM
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Yeah but that whole theory of Mike's falls pretty instantly becouse Gretzky has on numerous occations, as a matter of fact as soon as he has gotten the chance said that it's impossible for players of today to copy him, and that he himself could not do it.
Mike Bossy really do sound like a "One trick pony".
Bossy isn't the most modest guy around, but he might be one of the more honest ones. Gretzky isn't going to say he'd dominate the way he used to. Why would he? This is a 52 year old man looking at an NHL with the average age of 25-26. It is very easy for him to say now at his advanced age "Woah, I could never do that today." He isn't putting himself back in his 25 year old shoes. Bossy seems to be doing that and like Gretzky with his hockey sense, scoring touch and a natural nose for the net are succesful regardless of era. John Tavares seems to be lighting the NHL up rather well, and can now be classified as being among the NHL stars. Can anyone make a case that Tavares was better than Bossy? I can't. I think Bossy would do just fine.

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07-30-2013, 10:04 PM
  #72
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I think Bossy would do just fine.
I posted that quote to exhibit, that even at 54yrs of age in 2011 when he made it, that he possessed the hubris of youth, that to ask him "do you think you could score 50 in 50 today as you did in 81/82" (?) that his answer was fast, quick, didnt even have to think about it. "Thats like asking Gretzky if he could score 92. Id be shocked if he answered with anything but yes". As in no problem. Obviously he watches the game, understands its development, knows what he's looking at. Id be inclined to take his word for it. This isnt some punk absent a resume'. If you could Beam Terry Sawchuk from 1951/52 into 2013 then guess what? Convinced he'd absolutely stone them. Gretzky, unlike Bossy, wouldnt dream of being so bold. Far more deferential & politically correct. I actually dont like that about him. Your mouths full of **** say so. Oh sure, he'll say at 52, 55, "no, these guys today, the game, not possible" but thats not what he's thinking, believes. You kidding me? Damn straight he thinks he could do it again, and he could.

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07-30-2013, 11:05 PM
  #73
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Prime 24 year old Gretzky today would not score 215 points, you are correct. He would instead peak at 175 or maybe 180 points. He would average around 167 points a year during his 5 year peak instead of the ridiculous 207 points he averaged between 1982-1986. That's a 40 point drop-off - so you are indeed correct. But 167 points a year is still beating 2nd best in the NHL by around 60 points! Total domination. (Edit: All of this assumes he is on a good team, of course.)
Some mighty big assumptions there. Wayne was always around a 50% of his teams offense, ie in on around 50% of his teams goals.

175-180 points assumes a team scores at 350 plus rate for 5 years, pretty improbable.

The assumption is all based on what he did with 80's goalies and goaltending has just changed too much for even the best player in histroy to dominate at that type of level.

Many ex players will tell you how much the game has changed and how a very good junior hockey team in Canada could compete with a poor team from the 70's and even 80's in some cases.

It's pretty much a pointless en devour because we can't really even speculate on which team or with which players he might do the best.

Some will lean one way, and some the other way.

I'll take Wayne and his word on it.

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07-31-2013, 12:28 AM
  #74
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
Some mighty big assumptions there. Wayne was always around a 50% of his teams offense, ie in on around 50% of his teams goals.

175-180 points assumes a team scores at 350 plus rate for 5 years, pretty improbable.

The assumption is all based on what he did with 80's goalies and goaltending has just changed too much for even the best player in histroy to dominate at that type of level.

Many ex players will tell you how much the game has changed and how a very good junior hockey team in Canada could compete with a poor team from the 70's and even 80's in some cases.

It's pretty much a pointless en devour because we can't really even speculate on which team or with which players he might do the best.

Some will lean one way, and some the other way.

I'll take Wayne and his word on it.
Yes, Wayne was always in on around 50% of his Hall of Fame team's goals. Imagine if he was on a team like the late 80s Penguins? He would have been in on about 60% of his team's goals. I'm not sure I really understand your point.... Ok, I'll bite: let's say he still scores only 50% of his team's goals today. Let's take the 2009-2010 Washington Capitols as a good example of a high scoring modern team, as they scored a league leading 318 goals that year. Alex Ovechkin only scored 109 points that year. That's only 34% of his team's goals. What if they had a prime Gretzky who was scoring 50% of their team's goals? How many more goals would they have scored? The 1987-88 Oilers scored 372 goals. That's only 54 goals more than the 2009-10 Capitols. Would a prime Gretzky bring those extra 54 goals? If so, that puts him in line for a 186 point season. But let's say he doesn't bring an extra 54 goals. Let's say he only brings an extra 16 measly goals to the table. Surely a prime Gretzky could bring an extra 16 goals to the team, right? Well, that would be a very attainable 334 goals. What's 50% of that? You guessed it: 167 points.

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07-31-2013, 07:09 AM
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Darth Yoda
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Killion View Post
I posted that quote to exhibit, that even at 54yrs of age in 2011 when he made it, that he possessed the hubris of youth, that to ask him "do you think you could score 50 in 50 today as you did in 81/82" (?) that his answer was fast, quick, didnt even have to think about it. "Thats like asking Gretzky if he could score 92. Id be shocked if he answered with anything but yes". As in no problem. Obviously he watches the game, understands its development, knows what he's looking at. Id be inclined to take his word for it. This isnt some punk absent a resume'. If you could Beam Terry Sawchuk from 1951/52 into 2013 then guess what? Convinced he'd absolutely stone them. Gretzky, unlike Bossy, wouldnt dream of being so bold. Far more deferential & politically correct. I actually dont like that about him. Your mouths full of **** say so. Oh sure, he'll say at 52, 55, "no, these guys today, the game, not possible" but thats not what he's thinking, believes. You kidding me? Damn straight he thinks he could do it again, and he could.
First you're talkin about how Bossy still possesses that "hubris of youth", which he obviously does, but then you're going to take his words on it?
Gretzky, nor Bossy need to run their mouth about their accomplishments, those things they did is a fact. I dont have the same opinion on Gretzky as you do though, i like people being humble. But bold or humble, it is what is behind their rethoric that matters and that's the facts. Not very hard to see through this kind of stuff, although exactly what a "fact" is can be somewhat debated. I for example believes Wayne would be more of a playmaker today than in the early eighties, but still would rack up a couple of Richard's besides a boatload of Art Ross'es. If he does not have a very good goalscorer a la Kurri on his line that is, then he may have to settle for the point race, athough he himself would be the one to have lifted that teammate from a 50-goal man to a 65 goal man.


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