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What the hell is a true #1 center?

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Old
05-24-2014, 12:02 AM
  #1
Raspewtin
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What the hell is a true #1 center?

I just want to get an idea from this board, what do you define as a "true #1 center" (god, I hate that term)? What skills do they need? How do they need to play? The definition of a "#1 center" according to this board changes every hour, so I'd like to see what you all think.

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05-24-2014, 12:05 AM
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Kel Varnsen
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Should be one of the best 30 centers in the nhl. People around here think there are only maybe 5 number one centers in the entire league though.

It might be the worst term on these boards.

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05-24-2014, 12:07 AM
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Guy who has 100 points a season, duh. /sarc

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05-24-2014, 12:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Kel Varnsen View Post
Should be one of the best 30 centers in the nhl. People around here think there are only maybe 5 number one centers in the entire league though.

It might be the worst term on these boards.
Is there only one #1 center in the league?

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05-24-2014, 01:10 AM
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n8
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Originally Posted by Kel Varnsen View Post
Should be one of the best 30 centers in the nhl. People around here think there are only maybe 5 number one centers in the entire league though.

It might be the worst term on these boards.
My take. There are probably 3 tiers of "first line" centers. You have your PPG elite centers such as Stamkos, Crosby, Getzlaf, Giroux, Malkin, Tavares, Kopitar, Sedin... should be pretty obvious.

1A centers - who can sometimes be elite but have up and downs. They can also contribute in other ways like how Toews and Datsyuk do on defense but somehow don't quite get the production the elite ones get.
Spezza, Thornton, Backstrom, Marleau, Toews, Datsyuk, Seguin

1B centers - are ideally your 2nd line center and on many teams, they are but sometimes your team doesn't have that star but these guys contribute. they'll get you 60 pts a season and they are your 1st line center because they are the best you've got. In their career, they might have one or two 1A-like seasons. The best 1Bs are consistent 1Bs or overachieving 1Bs. Could also include potential 1A centers who aren't reaching their potential.
O'Reilly, Stastny, Turris, Koivu, Richards, Stepan, Krejci, Desharnais, Kelser, Nugent-Hopkins

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05-24-2014, 01:12 AM
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"#1C" needs to be cast into the ocean like "classless" and however many other HF-isms

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05-24-2014, 02:00 AM
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Originally Posted by I Am Classless View Post
"#1C" needs to be cast into the ocean like "classless" and however many other HF-isms
Clearly you're talking about intangibles

I give this post 7.5 classless Subbans

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05-24-2014, 09:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Kel Varnsen View Post
Should be one of the best 30 centers in the nhl. People around here think there are only maybe 5 number one centers in the entire league though.

It might be the worst term on these boards.
It's tough. If you go by this line of thinking, that there ought to be one first line centre for every team in the league, then I think you run into problems. What happens if there are 20 good-to-great centres, and then a real drop-off? Say, in this scenario of scoring:

Top C: 90 pts
5th best C: 81 pts
10th best C: 74 pts
20th best C: 63 pts
...
25th best C: 49 pts
30th best C: 44 pts

It'd be tough to say the 25th or 30th best Cs were in the same league, talent-wise, as the top 10 or 20.

...

With the above said, I generally look at the term "first line C" as the idea of a core offensive player that can be a catalyst offensively and can play a power v. power game in match-ups. In other words, a centre that won't hurt you defensively, could even thrive against opposition top lines, and will hold their own in generating offensive chances.

That's why a player like Bergeron, who may not put up top stats offensively, is undoubtedly a #1 C. And Krejci, too. So Boston has two number one Cs.

I wouldn't claim that there are 30 Cs capable of this. There could be more than 30, but there tend to be fewer.

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05-24-2014, 10:06 AM
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Agree, a very overused term. Similar to how their only seem to be 5 or so "#1D" in the league.

I think what I find even more irritating is the idea that you can't win without 2 elite C's, something that has been repeated on this board over and over. Never mind the fact that teams like Blues, Ducks, Hawks and Bruins were among the top teams and maybe have 1 elite C, but certainly not 2. Chicago's #2 pivot has been a revolving door, and despite that, they're still the closest thing the NHL's seen to a dynasty in quite some time.

There's simply no bullet proof formula, or no one position that will guarantee victory. You just need depth, throughout the lineup. That's the one thing all recent Cup winners have in common.

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05-24-2014, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike8 View Post
It's tough. If you go by this line of thinking, that there ought to be one first line centre for every team in the league, then I think you run into problems. What happens if there are 20 good-to-great centres, and then a real drop-off? Say, in this scenario of scoring:

Top C: 90 pts
5th best C: 81 pts
10th best C: 74 pts
20th best C: 63 pts
...
25th best C: 49 pts
30th best C: 44 pts

It'd be tough to say the 25th or 30th best Cs were in the same league, talent-wise, as the top 10 or 20.

...

With the above said, I generally look at the term "first line C" as the idea of a core offensive player that can be a catalyst offensively and can play a power v. power game in match-ups. In other words, a centre that won't hurt you defensively, could even thrive against opposition top lines, and will hold their own in generating offensive chances.

That's why a player like Bergeron, who may not put up top stats offensively, is undoubtedly a #1 C. And Krejci, too. So Boston has two number one Cs.

I wouldn't claim that there are 30 Cs capable of this. There could be more than 30, but there tend to be fewer.
This is the key for me. When I talk about it, I mean a dynamic player that can dictate play to the opposition, to the point of pushing other teams back on their heels.

Step is a solid player and we would be extremely fortunate to have him manning the pivot on a second line - he is excellent at enabling the dynamic wingers he plays with. But he lacks his own game-breaking skills. Put him on the ice with a couple of pluggers and, while the line might be quite effective defensively and perhaps even able to maintain some decent offensive zone time, it wouldn't generate many points. What we're lacking is the guy who is dangerous on his own, who the other team feels compelled to check.

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Old
05-24-2014, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by xsniper11x View Post
Agree, a very overused term. Similar to how their only seem to be 5 or so "#1D" in the league.

I think what I find even more irritating is the idea that you can't win without 2 elite C's, something that has been repeated on this board over and over. Never mind the fact that teams like Blues, Ducks, Hawks and Bruins were among the top teams and maybe have 1 elite C, but certainly not 2. Chicago's #2 pivot has been a revolving door, and despite that, they're still the closest thing the NHL's seen to a dynasty in quite some time.

There's simply no bullet proof formula, or no one position that will guarantee victory. You just need depth, throughout the lineup. That's the one thing all recent Cup winners have in common.
I don't think anyone thinks you need TWO elite Cs. One yes, and generally with solid depth behind him, but I don't think I've ever seen seen anyone suggest that you have to be Pittsburgh or the Gretzky/Messier Oilers to win.

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05-24-2014, 10:27 AM
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#1C refers to the center iceman on your team that plays on your #1 line.

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05-24-2014, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by n8 View Post
My take. There are probably 3 tiers of "first line" centers. You have your PPG elite centers such as Stamkos, Crosby, Getzlaf, Giroux, Malkin, Tavares, Kopitar, Sedin... should be pretty obvious.

1A centers - who can sometimes be elite but have up and downs. They can also contribute in other ways like how Toews and Datsyuk do on defense but somehow don't quite get the production the elite ones get.
Spezza, Thornton, Backstrom, Marleau, Toews, Datsyuk, Seguin

1B centers - are ideally your 2nd line center and on many teams, they are but sometimes your team doesn't have that star but these guys contribute. they'll get you 60 pts a season and they are your 1st line center because they are the best you've got. In their career, they might have one or two 1A-like seasons. The best 1Bs are consistent 1Bs or overachieving 1Bs. Could also include potential 1A centers who aren't reaching their potential.
O'Reilly, Stastny, Turris, Koivu, Richards, Stepan, Krejci, Desharnais, Kelser, Nugent-Hopkins
I like this breakdown

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05-24-2014, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by I Am Classless View Post
"#1C" needs to be cast into the ocean like "classless" and however many other HF-isms
"Elite" teams was another that got tossed around here far too often during the regular season.

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Old
05-24-2014, 10:38 AM
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#1C is the best center on your team.

The end


People around here have this strange idea that if a guy like Boyle is playing in the third line then Boyle is at fault for not being better.

No, its the managements fault for not having a better 3rd line center.

Same with Stepan. If you want him to be the 2nd line center, then blame the management for not finding anyone better.

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05-24-2014, 10:46 AM
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Kel Varnsen
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Originally Posted by Mike8 View Post
It's tough. If you go by this line of thinking, that there ought to be one first line centre for every team in the league, then I think you run into problems. What happens if there are 20 good-to-great centres, and then a real drop-off? Say, in this scenario of scoring:

Top C: 90 pts
5th best C: 81 pts
10th best C: 74 pts
20th best C: 63 pts
...
25th best C: 49 pts
30th best C: 44 pts

It'd be tough to say the 25th or 30th best Cs were in the same league, talent-wise, as the top 10 or 20.

...

With the above said, I generally look at the term "first line C" as the idea of a core offensive player that can be a catalyst offensively and can play a power v. power game in match-ups. In other words, a centre that won't hurt you defensively, could even thrive against opposition top lines, and will hold their own in generating offensive chances.

That's why a player like Bergeron, who may not put up top stats offensively, is undoubtedly a #1 C. And Krejci, too. So Boston has two number one Cs.

I wouldn't claim that there are 30 Cs capable of this. There could be more than 30, but there tend to be fewer.
First of all, I think that scenario is not worth considering because it's divorced from reality. Why not make it even crazier? Lets say the top five centers each score 200 points, and the 30th scores 3. Alright, but that's not what happens so that has nothing to do with how we talk about things. This year according to NHL.com, the range from 1-30 the past three years was 104-54, 57-32, and 109-51. The low men (tied) this year was Mikko Koivu, Juri Hudler, Logan Couture. Last year it was Seguin, Cammalleri, Mike Richards, Bergeron, Lecavalier, and Bryan Little. The year before, Fisher, Grabovski, Stepan, Henrique. And this doesn't take into consideration injuries, where guys who would be in the top 30 don't play enough games to get their points there that year or fall because they're more of goal scorers, or guys who have such well rounded games that you'd want them up there even though their points are a little lower. Some very notable names I found that didn't make the top 30 one of the past three years were: Stamkos, Backes, Dubinsky, Kesler, Mike Richards, Mikko Koivu, Crosby, Duchene. There are a lot of guys who you might want to bump up any year, go through the list yourself.

I didn't mean that 30 was a strict line of demarcation, but generally a #1 anything has to exist on each team. If that troubles you than be more specific, an elite #1 etc. If you want to say some teams don't have a "true number 1" I'm ok with that anyway, because as you pointed out you'll want to say many teams have "two number 1s," so generally you'll still want to say at least around 30 guys are number 1s.

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05-24-2014, 11:21 AM
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A 1st line C is like pornography: you know it when you see it.

The problem here is that some people don't think a young 60~ point two-way center is a 1C. I'm afraid to see what these people consider family friendly entertainment .

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05-24-2014, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by BlueshirtBlitz View Post
A 1st line C is like pornography: you know it when you see it.

The problem here is that some people don't think a young 60~ point two-way center is a 1C. I'm afraid to see what these people consider family friendly entertainment .
Well what if those centers help the team win? Look at Bergeron, 60 pt center, checks the opposition's top line and shuts them down, and dominates the faceoff dot... sure he isn't a PPG guy, but if he's shutting down a PPG guy, and scoring 3/4 games is he not a number 1 center?

Same with Backes... Toews... and Kopitar (who btw is a beast, PPG and shutdown center).

If I had a choice between Toews, Kopitar, or Bergeron vs an in-prime Joe Thornton... I'd take the former 3 since they help the team win, and everyone would say, numerically at least, that Joe Thornton is a no. 1 center for more than a decade.

Based on stats Eric Staal is a number 1 center, but he isn't a commited 3-Zone player.. and as a result his team has 1 playoff appearance in 8 seasons with him as their no 1 pivot.

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05-24-2014, 11:31 AM
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It's all about respeck.

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05-24-2014, 12:15 PM
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who knows, but ours has a broken jaw maybe we should be asking what's a legit number 2 center!

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05-25-2014, 11:50 AM
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If "dynamic, makes teammates better, PPG" are what a #1 center needs to be, there's like 6 of those.

If David Krejci, Logan Couture, and Patrice Bergeron are #1 centers, so is Stepan.

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05-25-2014, 12:25 PM
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The definition is a player that's not on the Rangers to give people a reason why the Rangers will never win it all.

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05-25-2014, 04:11 PM
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The definition is a player that's not on the Rangers to give people a reason why the Rangers will never win it all.
If we had one he would be the headless guy by now.

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05-25-2014, 06:28 PM
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A definition of a number 1 center is a player without a glass jaw who could take a high speed late elbow, yet not be a big baby about it.

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05-25-2014, 07:08 PM
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slipknottin
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A definition of a number 1 center is a player without a glass jaw who could take a high speed late elbow, yet not be a big baby about it.
Not sure if sarcasm

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