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Rate Paul Coffey all time.

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Old
02-22-2007, 09:02 PM
  #51
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Originally Posted by Cup 2007 Sens Rule! View Post
Don't overrate Fogarty's talent. He could have been a great player for a decade and a half in the NHL. But to say he would have been one of the very best Defencemen ever is hyperbole. His upside probably would have been Gonchar or Iafrate which would have been sweet but not Coffey, Orr, Potvin, Bourque sweet.
Many observers and hockey pundits have said that Fogarty had as much God-given talent as Orr - and he broke Orr's records in junior.

Here is how he was compared to Gretzky:

Brantford Minor Hockey Association coordinator Bob Coyne told reporters that "he was a star. From the time he put skates on, he was better than everyone else. "We had seen Wayne (Gretzky). Wayne had to work at it. His game was outsmarting everybody else. Fogarty's game was outperforming everybody else."

"He had everything. He could skate like the wind. He could see anybody on the ice. He could make the perfect pass. He was as talented as anybody I've seen in junior hockey. He broke all of Bobby Orr's records. Everybody was telling me you can't go wrong with him." - Maurice Filion, former Quebec GM, who drafted Bryan Fogarty with the Nordiques' first pick in 1987, six picks ahead of Quebec's second selection, Joe Sakic.

"Mats Sundin told me this: 'Bryan Fogarty could skate faster, shoot harder and pass crisper drunk than the rest of us could sober.'" - Max Offenberger

Alcohol was his downfall coupled with a personality disorder.

He had the skill of a Bobby Orr but the self-destructive personality of a John Kordic. So sad - so much promise wasted. And dead at 32

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02-22-2007, 09:34 PM
  #52
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Originally Posted by Wetcoaster View Post
Many observers and hockey pundits have said that Fogarty had as much God-given talent as Orr - and he broke Orr's records in junior.

Here is how he was compared to Gretzky:

Brantford Minor Hockey Association coordinator Bob Coyne told reporters that "he was a star. From the time he put skates on, he was better than everyone else. "We had seen Wayne (Gretzky). Wayne had to work at it. His game was outsmarting everybody else. Fogarty's game was outperforming everybody else."

"He had everything. He could skate like the wind. He could see anybody on the ice. He could make the perfect pass. He was as talented as anybody I've seen in junior hockey. He broke all of Bobby Orr's records. Everybody was telling me you can't go wrong with him." - Maurice Filion, former Quebec GM, who drafted Bryan Fogarty with the Nordiques' first pick in 1987, six picks ahead of Quebec's second selection, Joe Sakic.

"Mats Sundin told me this: 'Bryan Fogarty could skate faster, shoot harder and pass crisper drunk than the rest of us could sober.'" - Max Offenberger

Alcohol was his downfall coupled with a personality disorder.

He had the skill of a Bobby Orr but the self-destructive personality of a John Kordic. So sad - so much promise wasted. And dead at 32
Tragic. I have had personal experience as to how addiction & mental illness can rob people of their potential.

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02-22-2007, 09:59 PM
  #53
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Paul Coffey was my favourite player growing up in the eighties and I wore the number 7 proudly

but there's no way I could ever say he's better than Raymond Bourque

Coffey is a god with the puck, a gawd-damn dumbhead without... (that awesome break up of a two-on-one Russian rush in '87 aside)

Coffey is the greatest offensive defenseman I've ever seen.
Bourque is the greatest defenseman, period, I've ever seen (never watched Orr except on highlight reels, never even watched an entire game with him in it, so can't say)

I'd rather have a MacInnis or Pronger or Lidstrom than a Coffey.
Would I rather have a Robinson or Niedermayer or Stevens... damn that gets hard, involves trade-offs... dunno.

But I loved watching Coffey. Top-line entertainment!

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Old
02-23-2007, 10:13 AM
  #54
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that awesome break up of a two-on-one Russian rush in '87 aside
Sorry to be a stickler Kemosabey...BUT...1984 Canada Cup...Not 1987...Plenty o' us Oldtimers Will Never Forget that play !

CHEERS

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02-23-2007, 10:38 AM
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His ( Forgarty's ) upside probably would have been Gonchar or Iafrate which would have been sweet but not Coffey, Orr, Potvin, Bourque sweet.
Oh Plah -LEEEEEZZZ ....Gonchar n Iafrate couldn't carried Bryan's jock ...on their Best Day...Fogarty had the most pure God given talent ...of anyone since Orr...IMO...& I don't think that's an exaggeration, in the least...

Not to put to fine a pt. on it...BUT...Everyone who knew him always said that Bryan was the sweetest guy in the world...wouldn't hurt a flea...Alas...He suffered from Mental Illness...Serious Mental Illness...and things which would be considered totally routine for most...were anything but for him...Reportedly, He literally COULDN'T get thru the day...without alcohol n drugs...

***
Genius is what it is...and sometimes pure Genius...comes at a terrible , TERRIBLE COST...

Which reminds me of a story from my youth...I was looking at some small photos of Van Gogh paintings and disparaging them...and this Rastafarian guy...who was an artist...showed me some blown up images of the painting Starry Night...and I was totally blown away...The Brush strokes showed spirals merging into other spirals ...much like some people's thumb prints do...I was completely and utterly dumb struck...who the hell can make brush strokes like that ?!!!!???

BRYAN FOGARTY WAS THE VINCENT VAN GOGH OF HOCKEY ! HIS BRUSHES WERE BLADES...HIS CANVASS WAS ICE !!!!.

CHEERS

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02-25-2007, 07:51 PM
  #56
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Shore at 4 and Harvey at 8?? I guess to each his own, but would you mind explaining this to me?

I agree with that .. otherwise... a great list.

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02-27-2007, 12:24 AM
  #57
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Paul Coffey is the greatest defenseman I've seen in my lifetime. (Born 1981). To speak of people I've never seen previously would be futile. We can read about them, hear the stories, watch the highlights but...

Highlight packages can make anyone seem greater than they were. Hell, 20 years from now some poor kid will find a Rory Fitzpatrick video on YouTube and vote for him.

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02-27-2007, 08:01 AM
  #58
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Highlight packages can make anyone seem greater than they were.
Ur not by any chance trying to disparage Orr here are U ? Any Old Timer worth his salt would consider that a Sacrilege ! Everyone old enuf to have seen him play has #4 as the All Time #1 on D...With NO CLOSE 2'ND...

Let's not forget that unlike today's players...Most of Orr's Artistry wasn't even captured for posterity...Highlite reels do Not make him look better than he was...Rather they make his opponents LOOK MUCH MUCH WORSE ! Highlite reels capture Orr perfectly...They Embody ORR...Pure and Simple...

BOBBY O. WAS THE HUMAN HIGHLITE REEL !!!!

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03-26-2007, 01:15 PM
  #59
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I agree. I'm not a person to put athletes on a pedistal, however, Bobby Orr was the greatest. If you listen to former players and coaches that competed against Orr, you can clearly see the awe and respect they give him. Rightfully so!

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Old
03-26-2007, 02:50 PM
  #60
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Coffey played such a different game than most defensemen that his contributions are tough to rank. Coffey had as good a set of wheels as anybody I can think of, and had a great set of hands to go with the wheels. In terms of pure skating with the puck, I can only think of Orr to compare him with.

Where Coffey wasn't so dominant offensively was on the point position of the PP. Many of the great defensemen mentioned already were comparable or even better in that area than Paul, who was no slouch at anything offensively.

As for the "defensive" side of his game, he was not as bad as some think, but he was not a match for some of the 2 way guys mentioned either. He wasn't physical or tough enough to clear guys out of in front of the net, and he could get caught out of position occasionally when taking a chance going for the puck. That part of his game could be overlooked by many, when you consider it for a moment, because the Kevin Lowe type of kind of grind it out defensive defensemen were far more common and easy to find than those with Coffey's offensive gifts.

I used to watch him with the Oiler's and my rule of thumb was that he was always good for a positive impact on the game: He might cause a goal against in every game with his style of play, but he would contribute to a couple for in the same game to make up for it. A one step back, two steps forward kind of thing.

Looking at it from a fantasy point of view:

If I needed to kill a penalty I would take a Pronger/Potvin/Robinson type, if I wanted to score on PP I would prefer a MacInnis or a Bourque, but if it was an even strength situation late in a game or in OT and I needed a goal, I would want Coffey or Orr grabbing the puck behind the net and wheeling away...

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03-26-2007, 02:58 PM
  #61
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Next to Bobby Orr, who I was too young to watch play, Coffey is the single greatest offensive defenseman to ever play. He was the greatest I ever saw, easilly, hands down, the best. No question about it. Effortless skater of the most beautiful kind, gifted passer, good shot. A pleasure to watch play the game. The epitome of grace and skill. The best of his era offensively, without a doubt.

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03-26-2007, 04:42 PM
  #62
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I wonder how many of those tha bash Coffey saw him play for the Oilers, and not just at the end for the Flyers, Bruins, etc.


As someone who saw it all and had his teams heart broken twice by those Oilers, Coffey absolutely put the fear of god into you.

As a fan of an opposing team, if I had to rank the Oilers in terms of fear factor, Coffey was clearly #2, ahead of Messier, Kurri, Anderson, Fuhr.

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Old
03-26-2007, 06:42 PM
  #63
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Originally Posted by 100mph slapshot View Post
TOP10 offensive seasons by defensemen:

Bobby Orr (70-71) 78-37-103-139
Paul Coffey (85-86) 79-48-90-138
Bobby Orr (74-75) 80-46-89-135
Paul Coffey (83-84) 80-40-86-126
Bobby Orr (73-74) 74-32-90-122
Paul Coffey (84-85) 80-37-84-121
Bobby Orr (69-70) 76-33-87-120
Bobby Orr (71-72) 76-37-80-117
Paul Coffey (88-89) 75-30-83-113
Paul Coffey (89-90) 80-29-74-103

I'd personally put Coffey #5 or #6. His unbelievable offensive game easily makes up for the average defensive game. He was easily the best offensive D-men for over a decade. Can't argue with that.
It wasn't average defensive game. Coffey was ABYSMAL defensive game. Orr's strength was he could put up 130 points while playing stellar defensive hockey. Orr speed allowed him to get back into the zone soooo fast to break up plays, and his vision was unparalleled until gretzky.

Coffey managed to get a minus 25 in a year he scored over 100 points. He would lead an attack into the zone, but then be way out of position, and was often responsible for more goals than he scored.

Orr
Shore
Harvey
Potvin
Bourque
Fetisov
Robinson
Park
Lidstrom
Chelios/Kelly

Coffey is somewhere in the 11-15 range. A good defenseman can deal with his own end while putting up solid Numbers.

Almost all of the guys on this list are capable of 90+ point seasons and stellar defensive play. Coffey was so terrible in his own end, and his numbers are inflated from his outlet passes to Lemieux and Gretzky.

Coffey is not top 10 because he was not a two way player.

Its my opinion that if he played as a forward, he could have achieved even better numbers, and would not be looked down upon for his defensive lapses.

However, one of his main strengths(And he was the best ever at it) was the outlet pass from behind the net to center ice, smooth as silk.

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03-26-2007, 07:18 PM
  #64
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Originally Posted by J0e Th0rnton View Post
It wasn't average defensive game. Coffey was ABYSMAL defensive game. Orr's strength was he could put up 130 points while playing stellar defensive hockey. Orr speed allowed him to get back into the zone soooo fast to break up plays, and his vision was unparalleled until gretzky.

Coffey managed to get a minus 25 in a year he scored over 100 points. He would lead an attack into the zone, but then be way out of position, and was often responsible for more goals than he scored.

Orr
Shore
Harvey
Potvin
Bourque
Fetisov
Robinson
Park
Lidstrom
Chelios/Kelly

Coffey is somewhere in the 11-15 range. A good defenseman can deal with his own end while putting up solid Numbers.

Almost all of the guys on this list are capable of 90+ point seasons and stellar defensive play. Coffey was so terrible in his own end, and his numbers are inflated from his outlet passes to Lemieux and Gretzky.

Coffey is not top 10 because he was not a two way player.

Its my opinion that if he played as a forward, he could have achieved even better numbers, and would not be looked down upon for his defensive lapses.

However, one of his main strengths(And he was the best ever at it) was the outlet pass from behind the net to center ice, smooth as silk.
Coffey was an above average defensive player. Not near Chelios or Bourque but he was far from useless. How many plays did he break up with his great speed? 1987 Canada Cup anyone. During the Strike Year in Detroit he was an excellent defensively and won the Norris.

Coffey controlled the game by helping his teams control the puck. The Puck possession and offensive pressure the Oilers had was in no small part due to Coffey. You can't score if you don't have the puck. Coffey was not a defensive defenceman at all. In his Prime he was an offensive force. That WAS HIS ROLE. He was there to pressure the other team. Even on the PK the other team was deadly afraid of Coffey and his threat to score.

Coffey did not have an ABYSMAL defensive game. He had an Awesome offensive game. The -25 was on a terrible team that basically had Mario and Coffey and no ability to play a defensive game at all. The Pens in the years Coffey was there were not a good team at all. They had no depth and were only in the playoff hunt becuse Mario and to a lesser extent Coffey could produce enough offence that they could win half their games.

Watch Coffey in the playoffs for the Oilers or Detroit and he was not terrible defensively. Coffey had such great vision and skills he could make and did make many magnificient defensive plays. His role was not to play perfect positionally and take advantage of other teams mistakes. It was to constantly attack in the defensive zone or offensive zone or shorthanded or on the PP to always pressure the other team and force them to make mistakes. Coffey could have played positionally sound defence and scored alot less points and not been nearly as good of player. But he used his skills to the utmost. People think he was hurting his teams playing the style he did but of course he wasn't - he was helping them win games and score goals and always the other team had to worry about Coffey and it would throw them off their game.

The Oilers team and coaches and the Pens as well wanted Coffey to play the way he did. Their entire stype of play was patterned off Coffey's style. Which was attack at all costs at all times and if the other teams get some breakaways hopefully the goalie will stop it and if the other team scores who cares we will score more. And for the Oilers, they also knew who to tighten it up in the playoffs against really good teams and play a bit more conservatively when they needed to do it - which wasn't that often.

Whether Coffey was great defensively is irrelevant really. He was a truly amazing player who dominated in most games he played the first 15 years or so of his career. No one except Orr could threaten another team from the back end, actually no other defenceman ever could threaten like those 2 could.

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03-26-2007, 11:44 PM
  #65
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Originally Posted by Cup 2007 Sens Rule! View Post
Coffey was an above average defensive player. Not near Chelios or Bourque but he was far from useless. How many plays did he break up with his great speed? 1987 Canada Cup anyone. During the Strike Year in Detroit he was an excellent defensively and won the Norris.
No, he was not an above average defensive player. I grew up watching the guy play, and he got cought out of position more than anyone I can think of. His speed saved him a few times, but nowhere near enough. His game was to play like he was a 4th forward, not a defenseman. In his defense, that's how the team wanted him to play. But Great defensemen could do it both ways. Bourque put up 80-90 points a ton of times while being rock solid thunder defensively. Chelios put up great numbers doing the same.
His lack of great two way play is what puts coffey in the double digits for best defensmen.

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Coffey controlled the game by helping his teams control the puck. The Puck possession and offensive pressure the Oilers had was in no small part due to Coffey. You can't score if you don't have the puck. Coffey was not a defensive defenceman at all. In his Prime he was an offensive force. That WAS HIS ROLE. He was there to pressure the other team. Even on the PK the other team was deadly afraid of Coffey and his threat to score.

Coffey did not have an ABYSMAL defensive game. He had an Awesome offensive game. The -25 was on a terrible team that basically had Mario and Coffey and no ability to play a defensive game at all. The Pens in the years Coffey was there were not a good team at all. They had no depth and were only in the playoff hunt becuse Mario and to a lesser extent Coffey could produce enough offence that they could win half their games.
Uh, they had a terrific team then. John Cullen, Rob Brown, Kevin Stevens, Phil Bourque, Mark Recchi, Zarley Zalapski.

When they realised how defensively lacking they were after Coffey's terrible season defensewise, they went out and got Trottier, Samuelsson, Larry Murphy, etc etc

Quote:
Watch Coffey in the playoffs for the Oilers or Detroit and he was not terrible defensively. Coffey had such great vision and skills he could make and did make many magnificient defensive plays. His role was not to play perfect positionally and take advantage of other teams mistakes. It was to constantly attack in the defensive zone or offensive zone or shorthanded or on the PP to always pressure the other team and force them to make mistakes. Coffey could have played positionally sound defence and scored alot less points and not been nearly as good of player. But he used his skills to the utmost. People think he was hurting his teams playing the style he did but of course he wasn't - he was helping them win games and score goals and always the other team had to worry about Coffey and it would throw them off their game.
If you want to think that fine. If you put him on a team loaded with talent up front, him acting like a fourth forward would score you enough goals that you did not need to worry about his turnovers. See gretzky + Lemieux days.
However, Coffeys prime was a heck of a lot shorter than many of the names listed above him as greats, and those greats also put up a ton of points while playing solid defense. Something coffey never did.


Quote:
The Oilers team and coaches and the Pens as well wanted Coffey to play the way he did. Their entire stype of play was patterned off Coffey's style. Which was attack at all costs at all times and if the other teams get some breakaways hopefully the goalie will stop it and if the other team scores who cares we will score more. And for the Oilers, they also knew who to tighten it up in the playoffs against really good teams and play a bit more conservatively when they needed to do it - which wasn't that often.

Whether Coffey was great defensively is irrelevant really. He was a truly amazing player who dominated in most games he played the first 15 years or so of his career. No one except Orr could threaten another team from the back end, actually no other defenceman ever could threaten like those 2 could.
Again its all fine and dandy for you to think that, but he is still out of his league when it comes to top 10 Dmen.
I would take any of the following ahead of Coffey.

Orr

Shore
Harvey

Potvin
Bourque

Robinson
Fetisov
Park
Lidstrom
Kelly/Chelios

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03-27-2007, 03:44 AM
  #66
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Originally Posted by Cup 2007 Sens Rule! View Post
Whether Coffey was great defensively is irrelevant really. He was a truly amazing player who dominated in most games he played the first 15 years or so of his career. No one except Orr could threaten another team from the back end, actually no other defenceman ever could threaten like those 2 could.
Gotta disagree there, guys like Kelly, Shore, Clancy and Cleghorn were consistently too reigned in to be offensive threats like Orr and Coffey, but the ability was there. And then there's Cyclone Taylor who had 18 goals in 21 games as a defencemen. (Keeping in mind that those 21 games were two seasons.)

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03-28-2007, 09:40 AM
  #67
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How many plays did he break up with his great speed? 1987 Canada Cup anyone.
No ! Again...You're thinking about the 1984 Canada Cup...Not 1987...Coffey's most famous Defensive play ever !...the breaking of a Russian 2 on 1 in OT, just prior to Bossy's GWG, came in the 1984 C.C. Semi finals...eliminating CCCP...If memory serves, our guys went on to win a best of 3 finals vs. Sweden...

Man was that a great play !

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