If you're talking fastest player while handling and making moves with the puck it's got to be Bure in his prime, some of the moves he made at full speed to create breakaways and make stuff happen in the Canucks run of 94 were impressive.
I've seen a lot of players with more sheer speed than Bure. Bure never won the Fastest Skater competition at the All-Star Game. (Not that it's a true indicator, but that should tell you something). Fedorov had more sheer speed. But most players slow down with the puck on their stick. Not Bure. With the puck on his stick, Bure is the best skater I've ever seen.
When you say electrifying, do you equate that with "exciting?" Because exciting is an incredibly subjective term. I find a lot of things exciting: a goal, a big hit, a great fight, a strong defensive play, a big save, a scrum in the corners or a perfectly-timed blocked shot. I can think of a lot of players who I found more exciting to watch than Bure. If the puck wasn't on his stick, Bure was a non-factor. I found guys like Neely and Fleury to be more exciting to watch than Bure. If we're talking about potential once the puck is on his stick, Bure is right up there with guys like Coffey, Orr, Cyclone Taylor, Gretzky, Lemieux, Bobby Hull and LaFleur for the most exciting ever.
I believe the standard was set by Bobby Orr and then Guy Lafleur...... in recent memory I would say both Pavel Bure and Mike Modano were "electrifying"..... and now the torch is passed on to Alexander Ovechkin.
To see any of these players going full tilt up the ice was a sight to behold ... they made the defense back in goalies sweat bullets. Honorable mention to Paul Coffey as well.
Last edited by trevchar1971: 10-10-2006 at 12:45 PM.
Reason: spelling mistakes....also added 2 extras sentences
was? Are you talking about the guy playing the other wing with Kovalchuk last night, or are there two with that name?
Of players I saw live, Orr. To see him take the puck out from behind his own net, take it the length of the ice and score, and have everyone in the building KNOW that's what he was going to do, including the opposing players, who couldn't do anything about it, well, that's electrifying.
Howie Morenz and Eddie Shore must have been pretty elecrifying, and according to those who saw him, Morenz was among the fastest of all time. Having just seen a Coyotes-Ducks game live I have to say that I couldn't take my eyes off Nidermayer when he was on the ice.
Bure was fast, but not the fastest, what was amazing was how much control he had at top speed. Only Orr can match that. (Maybe Taylor, but, lack of video footage there.)
I've never, ever seen anyone able to handle the puck (and control his body) successfully at the speeds Bure could do it at.
His acceleration was also arguably the best I've ever seen. I've seen players with higher top speeds, but top speed is basically meaningless in comparison to acceleration...and I cannot think of anyone off-hand in my time that could accelerate like Pavel Bure.
Easily, easily the most exciting winger I've ever seen. By a GIGANTIC margin. Bure and Mario Lemieux were the two players who got me out of my seat like no others.