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

Explain Maurice Richard's greatness.

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Old
12-26-2013, 11:08 PM
  #26
TheDevilMadeMe
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
I agree he was a playoff beast but then again so was Feds and man he gets a real lack of respect at times.

Let's face reality here, part of the Richard mystic is his eyes and pure determination, as well as playoff goal scoring and the 50 in 50, even if it was a war year , his regular season inconsistency is often over looked and everything about him is put in the best possible light.

His being a top 5 player of all time should be seriously questioned and frankly he is a top 5 RW of all time, but not player IMO.

I would take Howe, Jagr, Makarov ahead of him off the top of my head of post WW2 guys and Bossy and Bure should be considered as well IMO.

Richard was a serious playoff guy and a great goal scorer but IMO he is often over rated at times.


Yeah, you just consider Bossy and Bure over Richard and wonder why the rest of us think you favor modern players to a laughable extent.

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12-26-2013, 11:24 PM
  #27
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I'm waiting for a Big Phil post.

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12-26-2013, 11:31 PM
  #28
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The Rocket never had any down years like Ovechkin did, and he was a playoff legend. Not that Ovechkin has been bad in the playoffs, but you know...
I understand that Richard was exceptional in the playoffs, even compared to Howe and Hull, but I think it's interesting that he had a situation where he nearly exclusively played against lower seeded teams in the playoffs in his whole career.

Ovechkin is no comparison (yet), but I would take that into account when looking at Jagr.

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12-26-2013, 11:43 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post


Yeah, you just consider Bossy and Bure over Richard and wonder why the rest of us think you favor modern players to a laughable extent.
Well at least I'll consider the argument and not just count top anything finishes in a 6 team Canadian league.

i know it keeps getting trotted out that this isn't done yet the first thing almost always brought up with 06 guys is this standard, then the same Canadian standard (which has if anything been the constant over time) gets dismissed with the modern guy, as is the case in our current top centers project.

Richard is a great player and pretty much a lock for a top 5 RW (I have him 3-4 depending on the day) but let's at least pout some context into it.

Injuries at the end of the day limit both Bossy and Bure form really being considered over Richard yet the longevity thing for earlier players, when not that long is often cited as the standard for the times, while the injury level of elite players, especially in Bure's era gets little to no consideration.

It's not an unfair statement to make that the History section here makes all sorts of allowances for earlier guys and scrutinizes the heck out of the modern guy to find any faults to their resume and different standards are being applied.

The Canadian to Canadian scoring records and playoffs of Schmidt and Feds and each players respective treatment is a prime example of this. It's something that gets repeated every round.

Ironically the HHOF is dealing with the same problem in a similar manner with the only 4 guys get in every year rule, it used to be just Canucks getting in but now everyone is lumped in the same pool, with obvious elite talent coming from non Canadian sources and really no indication of Canadian being weaker as a producer of hockey talent.

At least here there is some level of scrutiny, the HHOF process is a bit of a joke in it's lack of transparency and openness.

It's a different standard (and higher standard) that the modern guy is being held to when top anything finishes and all star berths are being compared to a 6 team all Canadian exclusive league plain and simple.

One can only imagine how great any future players will need to be in a 30 plus team Salary Cap league going forward to make any top lists in the history section.

We already saw that with Sid and 2 guys omitting him from their lists in the round he was elected in.


Last edited by Hardyvan123: 12-26-2013 at 11:53 PM.
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12-26-2013, 11:49 PM
  #30
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
I would take Howe, Jagr, Makarov ahead of him off the top of my head of post WW2 guys and Bossy and Bure should be considered as well IMO....Richard was a serious playoff guy and a great goal scorer but IMO he is often over rated at times.
Well Hv, I didnt actually see Richard in his prime, sometime before I was even conscious of the game but after all Ive read & heard, watched on old footage, Id actually take Maurice Richard over any player in the history of the game in a Playoff Series including Howe, Jagr, Makarov, Lemieux, Gretzky or Bossy / Bure up-front. The Rocket was a machine, a Wolverine in comparison to the sometimes Grizzly Howe and well beyond the domesticated Jagrs', Makarovs' & Bures' of the game. Only Gentleman Joe Sakic has more OT goals and quite a different breed from Richard altogether.

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12-26-2013, 11:52 PM
  #31
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First Place Finishes

Quote:
Originally Posted by unknown33 View Post
I understand that Richard was exceptional in the playoffs, even compared to Howe and Hull, but I think it's interesting that he had a situation where he nearly exclusively played against lower seeded teams in the playoffs in his whole career.

Ovechkin is no comparison (yet), but I would take that into account when looking at Jagr.
Inaccurate. During Maurice Richard's career 1943-1960, both the Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings finished first in the NHL regular season eight times. Throw in the 1965 first place finish for Detroit and Gordie Howe actually had a slight 9-8 advantage in this regard.

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12-27-2013, 12:12 AM
  #32
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Inaccurate. During Maurice Richard's career 1943-1960, both the Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings finished first in the NHL regular season eight times. Throw in the 1965 first place finish for Detroit and Gordie Howe actually had a slight 9-8 advantage in this regard.
That's not really related to what I was trying to say

1) Richard was exceptional in the playoffs, even compared to Howe and Hull

2) he nearly exclusively played against lower seeded teams in the playoffs in his whole career.

Whether or not Howe did too wasn't my point.


But now that you've bought it up I doubt the percentage of playing higher seeds over his career is as low for Howe as it is for Richard.


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12-27-2013, 12:17 AM
  #33
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82 goals in 133 playoff games.

In the 40s and 50s.
Pretty much this. Don't forget he was the first player the NHL had ever seen get to 500 goals. Unheard of at the time and he retired as the highest goal scorer the league had ever seen. Pretty sure he was the league's all-time leader in points at one time as well.

To this day he's the 3rd highest goal per game player in the playoffs behind Lemieux and Bossy. He was ridiculous in the playoffs.


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12-27-2013, 12:23 AM
  #34
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Hahahaha Makarov over Rocket Richard...

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12-27-2013, 12:38 AM
  #35
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Originally Posted by monster_bertuzzi View Post
Hahahaha Makarov over Rocket Richard...
Yes I think there is a strong case, Makarov is a clear and strong 2nd in points of all best on best players only behind Wayne in that reguard.

But then again perhaps you saw the Rocket play 1st hand, I didn't.

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12-27-2013, 01:12 AM
  #36
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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
Yes I think there is a strong case, Makarov is a clear and strong 2nd in points of all best on best players only behind Wayne in that reguard.

But then again perhaps you saw the Rocket play 1st hand, I didn't.
Well I DON'T THINK that there is a case what so ever. When Richard played in the NHL it WAS BEST ON BEST! The NHL had the best players in the World in the 40's and 50's and it wasn't even remotely close either. Also for example, he would face Howe 14 freakin times every season not even including playoffs and that's just Howe. Did Makorov even play 14 best on best games EVERY year? Sorry, he did not!

Hell some people don't even have Makarov as the best Russian forward ever.

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12-27-2013, 01:34 AM
  #37
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never saw him, but I think I understand why he is so highly regarded.

1. playoff performance
2. most dangerous ever from the blueline to the net.
3. most dynamic player of his era
4. like Gretzky and Orr, (and this may be the most important factor) he simply had 'it'

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12-27-2013, 08:12 AM
  #38
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Oh good. Another thread hijacked into 'integrated league' nonsense. Someone please find where Eva is and have him come back. At least constantly talking about Yzerman was a little bit entertaining.

And did Hardy really just compare Fedorov's playoff performance to Richard's? I'll have to bookmark this as proof for the next time I say that Fedorov is the most overrated player in sports history.

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12-27-2013, 08:25 AM
  #39
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The more I read, the more I think he is overrated. Whether or not he was the GOAT AT THE TIME and the most prolific scorer AT THE TIME is irrelevant. I'm sure the first person that picked up a stick on a frozen pond somewhere in Alberta was the GOAT at that moment.

I honestly don't see how the first among six is greater than the first among thirty. Richard did not just "face Howe" 14 times, he faced defensemen who could barely skate and goalies who would let in beachballs. Fedorov and other 90s forwards faced the best group of defensemen in history. I'm not putting Feds over Richard, god forbid, but the argument is not as ridiculous as some sacred cow worshippers want to believe.

I mean, seriously: one Hart? How do you explain that away?

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12-27-2013, 08:35 AM
  #40
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Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
I'm not putting Feds over Richard, god forbid, but the argument is not as ridiculous as some sacred cow worshippers want to believe.
Bringing up Fedorov or Bure kind of is, because of how many players are usually considered ahead of them but inferior to Richard.

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12-27-2013, 10:26 AM
  #41
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His goal scoring exploits plus he just had the look for the game and a good intensity for the game as well.

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12-27-2013, 10:33 AM
  #42
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Competitiveness, toughness and clutch play



OT goal in 7th game to win semi-finals in 1952, still concussed after earlier having being put out of the game, only to come back and play


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12-27-2013, 11:11 AM
  #43
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Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
The more I read, the more I think he is overrated. Whether or not he was the GOAT AT THE TIME and the most prolific scorer AT THE TIME is irrelevant. I'm sure the first person that picked up a stick on a frozen pond somewhere in Alberta was the GOAT at that moment.

I honestly don't see how the first among six is greater than the first among thirty. Richard did not just "face Howe" 14 times, he faced defensemen who could barely skate and goalies who would let in beachballs. Fedorov and other 90s forwards faced the best group of defensemen in history. I'm not putting Feds over Richard, god forbid, but the argument is not as ridiculous as some sacred cow worshippers want to believe.

I mean, seriously: one Hart? How do you explain that away?
Pretty easily actually... it's an arbitrary award and French Canadians were not held in high respect back then. People who write this off know very little about Canadian history. It WAS a factor. Richard had more than one Hart worthy season dude...

50 goals in 50 games and the Hart goes to somebody else? If anything you should be asking why the league didn't award it to him more than they did... but the answer is obvious. If his name was Smith he'd have had more MVPs. No way he doesn't win the Hart with a 50 goal in 50 game season. Ted Kennedy wins the Hart over both Richard and Geoffrion in '55? How does that happen? Even if you take it from Richard for his suspension... it doesn't go to Geoffrion?

(Not a Francophone btw... just somebody who understands this country's history and the climate that Richard played in.)


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12-27-2013, 11:29 AM
  #44
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Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
The more I read, the more I think he is overrated. Whether or not he was the GOAT AT THE TIME and the most prolific scorer AT THE TIME is irrelevant. I'm sure the first person that picked up a stick on a frozen pond somewhere in Alberta was the GOAT at that moment.

I honestly don't see how the first among six is greater than the first among thirty. Richard did not just "face Howe" 14 times, he faced defensemen who could barely skate and goalies who would let in beachballs. Fedorov and other 90s forwards faced the best group of defensemen in history. I'm not putting Feds over Richard, god forbid, but the argument is not as ridiculous as some sacred cow worshippers want to believe.

I mean, seriously: one Hart? How do you explain that away?
i will explain it one more time for you. and you can tell me whether you 1. don't understand the argument, 2. didn't read the argument, 3. choose to ignore the argument, or 4. have a reasonable rebuttal to the argument--

in a six team league, any player faces more consistently high-level competition. this is especially true for richard's era, which featured three lines and a utility forward, and five D. (not 100% sure of the exact roster sizes, but they were definitely smaller in the 50s than they are today.)

that means in the 70 games he played, he faced sawchuk, hall, and worsley 14 times each. he also faced al rollins ('54 hart winner) and john henderson/jim henry 14 times each. (this doesn't account for the three games richard missed or the handful of games each goalie missed.) that's six of the seven best goalies in the world (because jacques plante plays on richard's team). all could stop beach balls. compare to some of the randoms fedorov faced over the years-- how many goals did feds score against norris division guys like jon casey, jeff hackett, or bob essensa, to say nothing of vincent riendeau, darcy wakaluk, rick tabaracci, and some other career backups who started on norris teams for a year or two? it's not like he was facing roy, belfour, hasek, and brodeur 4 out of every 5 games. of those hall of famers, only belfour was in his division, which means that in his hart winning '94 season, fedorov only faced belfour once every 16 games (5 times/82 games).

the defensemen he would have faced: quackenbush, flaman, boivin (boston); kelly and pronovost (detroit); gadsby and howell (new york); horton, jim thompson (toronto); stanley and mortson (chicago). other than thompson (2 time 2nd team all-star) and mortson (one time 1st team all-star), all are hall of famers. so yeah, fedorov may have faced the deepest collection of defenders in NHL history, but bourque, macinnis, leetch, coffey, chelios, stevens, lidstrom, murphy, blake, and whatever other handful of guys you want to put in that group were spread out over half the teams in the league (and, by the way, two of those hall of fame defensemen were on fedorov's own team at any given time). a lot more easy games for fedorov (or jagr, or whomever else you want to cite) than rocket richard.

also, in a six team league, you have guys checking you who check you 14 times a year (plus more in the playoffs). you know their tendencies, but they know yours. how well does zarley zalapski know fedorov?

so even if we pretend that european integration and various other "evolutionary" factors have tripled the talent pool, that still doesn't change the fact that in a six team league you are facing the best 85 players (pro-rated to 255 in a post-'94 league) every night, which is a lot more more often than you would in fedorov's heyday, where that 255 figure is only about half the regulars on the other 25 teams in the league.

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12-27-2013, 11:53 AM
  #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
The more I read, the more I think he is overrated. Whether or not he was the GOAT AT THE TIME and the most prolific scorer AT THE TIME is irrelevant. I'm sure the first person that picked up a stick on a frozen pond somewhere in Alberta was the GOAT at that moment.

I honestly don't see how the first among six is greater than the first among thirty. Richard did not just "face Howe" 14 times, he faced defensemen who could barely skate and goalies who would let in beachballs. Fedorov and other 90s forwards faced the best group of defensemen in history. I'm not putting Feds over Richard, god forbid, but the argument is not as ridiculous as some sacred cow worshippers want to believe.

I mean, seriously: one Hart? How do you explain that away?
Even accounting for hyperbole, your comment about weak-skating defencemen and bad goalies is way off. Care to name names?

The NHL of the 1950s was a mature league with a well-developed feeder system covering Canada. There is absolutely zero evidence that it featured weak players. In fact, many fine players were never able to stick in the league and played out their careers in lesser leagues.

Defencemen had to be strong skaters since the advent of three forward lines and aggressive forechecking tactics in the 1930s, and many were strong skaters before that time as well.

Also, your comment implying that hockey originated in Alberta is strange, considering that when hockey became an organized sport the province of Alberta did not exist and the population of that part of the North West Territories consisted of Indians and a few isolated forts.

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12-27-2013, 11:54 AM
  #46
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Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
The more I read, the more I think he is overrated. Whether or not he was the GOAT AT THE TIME and the most prolific scorer AT THE TIME is irrelevant. I'm sure the first person that picked up a stick on a frozen pond somewhere in Alberta was the GOAT at that moment.

I honestly don't see how the first among six is greater than the first among thirty. Richard did not just "face Howe" 14 times, he faced defensemen who could barely skate and goalies who would let in beachballs. Fedorov and other 90s forwards faced the best group of defensemen in history. I'm not putting Feds over Richard, god forbid, but the argument is not as ridiculous as some sacred cow worshippers want to believe.

I mean, seriously: one Hart? How do you explain that away?
Hardly a good argument. A lot of Canadians played hockey. The best athletes usually played hockey. The best league by far was the NHL. A team was badically 15 or 16 players. A few of the possibly better players got stuck in the AHL or other minor leagues. So you have the best 60-80 players in the world for sure Richard's whole career. Richard never played against useless bad players.

You can argue the 70's and 80's were weak EVERYWHERE. At one point 28-32 pro North American teams. More European teams as many of their best players played in North America. A Soviet league with 1 or 2 stacked teams that didn't even play the best possible competition Internationally except in a few tournaments.

Richard had few legitimate arguments against him based on competition save for the WWII years.

Also the fact the AVERAGE NHL player is better now then in the expansion era, and the bottom line players are far better then in the 1970's and 80's is irrelevant to whenever "greatness" presented itself. Orr, Gretzky, Howe.... And also.... Either Hull, Beliveau, Clarke, Richard etc. etc. They aren't evenly distributed by time or era. They are a top 1% that are unrelated to style and era.

The fact that virtually all the true greats were best in the world (or close) in their early 20's to mid or even late 30's. Even though they transend eras of great changes in equipment, goaltending styles and equipment, coaching strategies and systems, european player prevalence. See Bourque, Lidstrom, Howe, Beliveau.... Or Patrick freaking Roy. He broke in with those heavy leather pads and a Jason mask and finished with a Michelin Man goaltender get up! Why is a 42 year old Jagr able to still be quite dominant now, far, far slower... Probably among the slowest players in the NHL.... At a time when speed is the biggest factor in the game?

Hockey changes.... But really it does not change that much. The best players almost inevitably remain the best players when a big change to the league occurs.

There is no good reason to lower a ranking of Richard because he played in the six team league.

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12-27-2013, 11:55 AM
  #47
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never saw him, but I think I understand why he is so highly regarded.

1. playoff performance
2. most dangerous ever from the blueline to the net.
3. most dynamic player of his era
4. like Gretzky and Orr, (and this may be the most important factor) he simply had 'it'
This and the legend of the culture war between french and English so well put in the "hockey sweater" story.

Richard was great but the legend around him makes him larger than life at times.

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12-27-2013, 11:57 AM
  #48
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Originally Posted by DisgruntledGoat View Post
Oh good. Another thread hijacked into 'integrated league' nonsense. Someone please find where Eva is and have him come back. At least constantly talking about Yzerman was a little bit entertaining.

And did Hardy really just compare Fedorov's playoff performance to Richard's? I'll have to bookmark this as proof for the next time I say that Fedorov is the most overrated player in sports history.
Sorry if one only looks at stats then yes Richard is much better in the playoffs but I value 2 way play and everything a player does and don't just go back to my retro fantasy 40-50's playoff stats to get a complete picture.

Feel free to bookmark it and expose your opinion I won't mind.

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12-27-2013, 12:00 PM
  #49
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Bringing up Fedorov or Bure kind of is, because of how many players are usually considered ahead of them but inferior to Richard.
Bure wasn't called the Russian rocket for no reason, his myth and determination in goal scoring was indeed very Richard like.

No doubt fans in Vancouver who loved him had the same feelings of excitement when Richard had the puck from the blue line in as every time Bure had the puck magic was possible and often occurred.

Bure had the "it factor" in spades, only injuries derailed what could have been and what he did do was extremely impressive.

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12-27-2013, 12:05 PM
  #50
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This and the legend of the culture war between french and English so well put in the "hockey sweater" story.

Richard was great but the legend around him makes him larger than life at times.
As I wrote above, there's some legitimacy to this... Folks write it off as him being some kind of 'folk hero' and that's BS. He should have at least one more Hart if not two. That's not (in my mind anyway) debatable.

The league simply did not want a French Canadian as their biggest star. This is also true. What isn't known is how much this affected point totals and assists. Did the league doctor the stats to give other players a push over Richard? I don't know. It's impossible for any of us to really know because we weren't there but it wouldn't surprise me if this was the case, esp given the fact that he doesn't wind up with the Hart in the 50 goal season.

At the very least you've got a player who was ridiculous in the playoffs, had at least three Hart worthy seasons, led the league in goals five times and came in 2nd in points several times to Gordie Howe or his own teammates. Averaging something like 5 goals in every 7 playoff games is absurd.

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