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

How Pavel Bure Almost Became the Next Face of the NHL as of 1995.

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Old
11-03-2013, 01:30 AM
  #26
Syckle78
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I really dislike arguments such as 'your memory is distorted '. It's a cheap cop out that's impossible to argue against. You're basically blowing off what we watched and know about the player from that time period. He was a great player, I'm glad he made it into the hall. That said I dont see the need to try and make him into something he wasn't.

Also, if one young Russian was going to be the face of the league it was going to be Fedorov. He was getting theESPN time and showing up in mainstream media. Nike also had a big time campaign for him
Bureau may have been a rock star in Vancouver but Feds was much more popular everywhere else.

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11-03-2013, 05:57 AM
  #27
the edler
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Unfortunately, I think you're wrong. I've seen JetsAlternate claim that Bure was "an excellent two-way player," and "an above average defensive player."
I can't speak for the OP, but sometimes to defend a view you have to fight fire with a little bit of fire, or exagerrations with some small exaggerations of your own. Bure gets trashed so much at times us fans gets a bit defensive, and sensitive.

I don't think Bure was "an excellent two-way player" or "an above average defensive player" myself, and of course he was bad defensively if you compare him to Dirk Graham or Jere Lehtinen. If you compare him to contemporary high scoring wingers of the 90s though, like Jagr, Selänne, Hull, Robitaille, Mogilny, Neely and Recchi, one could actually say he was "slightly above average" in his own zone, at his best. Up thread, for example, you could see two coaches in the league who picked him as the best penalty killer in the league. And even though I wouldn't consent to that opinion, because there's different kinds of playing on the PK, he definitely was one of the best offensive PKers. And it's still mostly a defensive situation. You can't really cherry pick a lot in those situations, but only play on the edge. And I guess that's why Jagr and Selänne didn't play much in those situations.

Even in 97–98, when his defensive demise is said to have really started, he still led the team in plus and minus, except for Zezel and McCabe who played 20 games each, so it wasn't really only his fault the team sucked. And in Florida, who outside of 99–00 was a really mediocre to bad team, he still came out as a plus player.

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11-03-2013, 07:24 AM
  #28
BraveCanadian
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Bure was just fine without the puck as a Canuck from what I remember.

The cherry picking reputation is just being extended back from Florida in people's mind imo.

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11-03-2013, 07:59 PM
  #30
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Why are we talking about Bure's two way game in Vancouver so much? Whatever claim he could make to be the next face of the NHL, it was all predicated on his explosive, spectacular offense and the success the Canucks derived from that, not how much of a well rounded player he was. And as amazing as his sophomore season and third year was, he wasn't separating himself from the other greats of the time. The failure of the Mogilny experiment, the knee injury and the Canucks going in the toilet really torpedoed the momentum he had early in his career.

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11-03-2013, 08:44 PM
  #32
TheDevilMadeMe
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I agree that Fedorov was much closer to becoming the face of the NHL than Bure, at least in the United States. He was a higher-tier star than Bure, played in a bigger market, and was just as handsome and flamboyant

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11-03-2013, 08:56 PM
  #33
vadim sharifijanov
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
I agree that Fedorov was much closer to becoming the face of the NHL than Bure, at least in the United States. He was a higher-tier star than Bure, played in a bigger market, and was just as handsome and flamboyant
that's probably true. i'd argue that bure looked better on sportscenter, but hockey was pretty buried on sportscenter so it probably didn't make much of a difference.

but as i recall, north america just wasn't ready for a soviet-born face of the game yet. i don't often credit the NHL with making the smart marketing play, but in that instance, not pushing fedorov, or bure, or jagr, or any other soviet bloc guy, was the right move commercially speaking.

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11-03-2013, 10:32 PM
  #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
I agree that Fedorov was much closer to becoming the face of the NHL than Bure, at least in the United States. He was a higher-tier star than Bure, played in a bigger market, and was just as handsome and flamboyant
lol, no he wasn't.

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11-03-2013, 10:33 PM
  #35
TheDevilMadeMe
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lol, no he wasn't.
lol, yes he was.

Where was Bure's Hart Trophy, again?

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11-03-2013, 10:37 PM
  #36
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lol, yes he was.

Where was Bure's Hart Trophy, again?
Gretzky, Lemieux, and Jagr were in a tier above for stardom - Fedorov and Bure were in the next tier along with Selanne, Forsberg, Kariya etc.

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11-04-2013, 01:56 AM
  #37
the edler
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The failure of the Mogilny experiment
I don't know if I would put the Mogilny and Bure failure too much on any of the players. Not only because of the injuries, but Mogilny and Bure were too much the same kind of player at RW for it to work properly, 5 and 7 years into their NHL careers. In the Soviet league and the one World Junior tournament where Mogilny and Bure played on the same line, Bure was a LW, at least in the 89 Worlds Juniors I've seen clips of him roam the left side, and in his first season in Vancouver he did alternate LW and RW, but from then on he was strictly RW. I think the management misread that one and went "nostalgic". It would have been like trying to play Bondra and Selänne on the same line, or Bure and Bondra, or Oates and H Sedin. Bure had some nice chemistry with Greg Adams, and worked well with Kozlov.

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11-04-2013, 05:30 AM
  #38
Psycho Papa Joe
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I recall Nike doing a marketing survey around that time, and their conclusion was that Fedorov was going to be the next face of the NHL.

He had the looks, skills, talent and played in a big US market.

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11-04-2013, 06:06 AM
  #39
the edler
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But Fedorov, like Bure, had that Greta Garbo type of appeal. Looks, but not very outgoing, and not the clownish Groucho Marx appeal of an Alex Ovechkin.

NHL could have marketed the new dynamic duo instead.


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11-04-2013, 06:23 AM
  #40
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And even when Ovechkin was clearly a step up from Crosby (2007-08 to 2009-10), I don't think he ever really was "the face" of the NHL in a way Crosby is today. Tough to be the face of a North American league as a Russian.
If Ovechkin had looked liked Bure or Fedorov he probably would have blown Crosby off the map for marketing in 2009.The personality is a big thing too, remember Bure was very private when he was a player. Ovechkin is very open , approachable although he sometimes tries too hard(honestly it would be difficult for anyone to hit exactly the right note)

Player with looks like young Bure/Fedorov/Mogilny/Yzerman, personality of Ovechkin, prpriety of Lidstrom, hockey skills of any of the elite forwards would eat marketing alive regardless of place of birth. Although nationality is a factor for the home ton feel for some people, there will be others who like the mystique of a foreign guy.

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11-04-2013, 06:24 AM
  #41
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
I agree that Fedorov was much closer to becoming the face of the NHL than Bure, at least in the United States. He was a higher-tier star than Bure, played in a bigger market, and was just as handsome and flamboyant
He was second fiddle to Yzerman though by optinion of most.

Also disagree about looks,Fedorov was good looking but Bure was insanely jaw dropping good looking.

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11-04-2013, 10:32 AM
  #42
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I understand the point but please tell me this "who is more good looking" talk won't continue I

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11-04-2013, 11:12 AM
  #43
vadim sharifijanov
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I don't know if I would put the Mogilny and Bure failure too much on any of the players. Not only because of the injuries, but Mogilny and Bure were too much the same kind of player at RW for it to work properly, 5 and 7 years into their NHL careers. In the Soviet league and the one World Junior tournament where Mogilny and Bure played on the same line, Bure was a LW, at least in the 89 Worlds Juniors I've seen clips of him roam the left side, and in his first season in Vancouver he did alternate LW and RW, but from then on he was strictly RW. I think the management misread that one and went "nostalgic". It would have been like trying to play Bondra and Selänne on the same line, or Bure and Bondra, or Oates and H Sedin. Bure had some nice chemistry with Greg Adams, and worked well with Kozlov.
as i recall, what frustrated fans was that rick ley didn't even try bure and mogilny on the same line, except on the PP. and, as you say, it makes sense to spread the talent around, especially when both guys are at their best at the same position. but i think the common refrain was, geez could you just try it out once to see if some of the magic's still there?

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11-04-2013, 11:55 AM
  #44
the edler
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as i recall, what frustrated fans was that rick ley didn't even try bure and mogilny on the same line, except on the PP. and, as you say, it makes sense to spread the talent around, especially when both guys are at their best at the same position. but i think the common refrain was, geez could you just try it out once to see if some of the magic's still there?
Did Keenan try them on a line in 97–98? I didn't watch a whole lot of games in those ugly Messier years.

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11-04-2013, 12:16 PM
  #45
vadim sharifijanov
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Did Keenan try them on a line in 97–98? I didn't watch a whole lot of games in those ugly Messier years.
not to my recollection. i mean, he probably did at some point, but they weren't often healthy at the same time, and almost never at full speed at the same time.

but my big memory is before the season, with our new russian superstar, and about to open our brand new arena, with this image--



-- on the side of every bus and on every billboard in the city, pat quinn announces to everyone that rick ley's decided that bure and mogilny aren't going to play on the same line. the city was livid when it turned out he wasn't bluffing. poor rick ley (a terrible coach but still...), totally set up to be fired.

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11-04-2013, 02:12 PM
  #46
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Yep, during the 1995-'96 preseason, Rick Ley tried to shift Mogilny over to the left side to play with Bure. It didn't work well at all--the players didn't click and Mogilny looked lost and tentative.

Then Mogilny got shifted over to a line with Cliff Ronning and Roman Oksiuta and scored something like 8 points in their first 3 regular season games together. He just looked like a completely different player out there. Then Bure blew out his knee a few weeks later and that was that.

I also seem to remember a game or two in 1996-97 when Tom Renney put Bure and Mogilny back together--there might have been a night in St. Louis when the two clicked and combined for a few points. But generally it didn't work. For whatever reason, Mogilny seemed to play better when he was the focal point of a line.

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12-06-2013, 09:40 AM
  #49
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Bure might have been the face of the NHL for a couple years if the Canucks won it all in 1994. He was certainly a very exciting and dynamic player to watch. He had very marketable style and looks. If he had a Stanley Cup to go with it, that might have put him over the top, at least until the Avalance/Red Wings started winning their Cups with flashy elite players.

But without that Cup, he was one of many hockey demigods, as another post stated well.

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