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

Howe or Lemieux

View Poll Results: Who was better?
Gordie Howe 52 46.85%
Mario Lemieux 59 53.15%
Voters: 111. You may not vote on this poll

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Old
02-25-2007, 02:49 PM
  #101
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Originally Posted by Wetcoaster View Post
It is the Holy Hockey Trinity of Orr, Howe and Gretzky and their rankings depend upon how you weight the criteria - everyone else is a level below.
I agree with that to an extent.

When I look at career value, Gretzky and Howe are well above the rest of the world. Orr is alone in third (would likely have been up with Gretzky and Howe if he played a full career). Lemieux comes in fourth and would likely have had some decent separation over 5th place Jean Beliveau.

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02-25-2007, 06:12 PM
  #102
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Where did you get that DVD? I would love to see Max Bentley in action.
It was a bonus feature on a DVD I purchased on the Blackhawks 61 Stanley cup called the "Forgotten Champions. The 51 all star game feature is about 20 minutes long and there is about 15 minutes of actual game action. You do see Max make a couple of nice rushes. Also Howe & schmidt. All star games were a lot rougher in those days & lindsay mixes it up a bit with the Rocket & also Ted kennedy. I think it was made as a news reel to show in movie theatres. The quality is pretty good. Also pretty neat the way they introduce the first team. They are shown coming into the change room one by one and picking up their stick from the rack. I will PM you the contact number.

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02-25-2007, 06:34 PM
  #103
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Mario is one of the top 2 or 2 offensive players of all time/ But Howe is one of the top 4 or 5 offensive players and when you add in grit, toughness and defense there is no comparison .... None.

Gordie Howe was hands down the greatest player in the first 50 years of the NHL. And only because Orr was a defenseman could he compare And of course Gretz. There is nobody else in the equation.

Bobby Hull and Rocket Richard compare with Mario....... and that is saying a lot.

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02-25-2007, 09:17 PM
  #104
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Originally Posted by Zine View Post
Gotta agree with TheSniper26 on this…..the evidence is in watching the games. I just got done watching the summit series dvd and the overall play was worse…..especially compared to todays best of the best.

Here are some clips (the only youtubes I could find) from the late ‘50s/early ‘60s and the level of play is significantly worse. While there are a handful of nice plays, the majority of these goals would not go in today.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JpsIXOlvuf0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WWATMpwsA8A

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S2J81hiNvNQ


In addition, to verify the ‘evolution’ aspect of the game, watch this clip from the 1930 World Championships. Of course these guys weren’t the ‘elite’ players of their day, but it was still considered a very high level of play at that time. No disrespect but I think they’d be beat by the women’s Olympic teams today.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h9w8lzmHbcg
i agree the game is much better, but i think it makes no sense to judge old players by a modern standard, as if those players' abilities would not have benefited from the game's evolution.

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02-26-2007, 01:45 AM
  #105
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I don't think there's anything wrong with asking which player was better. I actually think it's an interesting question. And it deserves a lot more answers than it's gotten so far, considering most posters here don't even try to answer it.

Albeit personally, I really can't say. I never saw Gordie Howe in his prime.

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02-27-2007, 10:33 PM
  #106
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Originally Posted by TheSniper26 View Post
Well being 22 years old, that's a definite no. But most people on here haven't. And more than that, the ones who did were probably very young. And much like anything else that is a childhood memory, it's being glorified. Besides, I'm basing my opinion off of footage and accounts from people who [I]did[I] watch the game during those years. And they agree that the game has changed and improved drastically. I don't know why it's so hard to accept that the players in the modern era can do things that the guys in the older eras couldn't. It's evolution. It's logical. And if you stop to think about it, it's a really good thing.
Yeah, you're probably right. In the future they'll have to supercool the ice because the players will skate so fast that regular old ice will just melt. Their sticks will have to be made from carbon fibre and alloys to take the stress from their 200 mph slapshots.
Make a list of the things the players can do today that they couldn't in the past. I'd like to know. You make it sound as though it's an entirely different game than it was. Maybe they should rename it. It's STILL hockey.
The players today are better conditioned overall but are in no way better athletes. To insinuate otherwise is absurd. But then again, you are 22 so you do still know everything.
My Father disagrees with your Grandfather and I disagree with your Father. I guess that's a draw then.

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02-27-2007, 11:37 PM
  #107
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Yeah, you're probably right. In the future they'll have to supercool the ice because the players will skate so fast that regular old ice will just melt. Their sticks will have to be made from carbon fibre and alloys to take the stress from their 200 mph slapshots.
Make a list of the things the players can do today that they couldn't in the past. I'd like to know. You make it sound as though it's an entirely different game than it was. Maybe they should rename it. It's STILL hockey.
The players today are better conditioned overall but are in no way better athletes. To insinuate otherwise is absurd. But then again, you are 22 so you do still know everything.
My Father disagrees with your Grandfather and I disagree with your Father. I guess that's a draw then.
There's no need to insult other posters, but if it helps you prove your point then fine..


Anyway, your average NHLer IS more skilled today.

Obviously, players today aren't born with more innate talent, but they do have the advantage of modern training techniques (power skating, "the science of sports", etc.). This allows a player to develop their skill set to the fullest - so the end product is much better than it was 30, 40, 50 years ago.

Of course the best players have skills you can't teach (and they can play in any era), but that doesn't disprove the notion that hockey players today, as a whole, are the most talented they've ever been.

In addition, the game DOES evolve. Players try new things, new coaching strategies are implemented, etc. and these things are built upon generation after generation. The games of the 1950's were extremely primitive tactically and also in terms of what the players were doing on the ice. Even the 'highlight reel' goals of back then are laughable compared to todays.
This is the same reason why the NHL 50 years from now will be much more talented than it is today.


Last edited by Zine: 02-27-2007 at 11:45 PM.
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Old
02-28-2007, 12:11 PM
  #108
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Originally Posted by Zine View Post
There's no need to insult other posters, but if it helps you prove your point then fine..


Anyway, your average NHLer IS more skilled today.

Obviously, players today aren't born with more innate talent, but they do have the advantage of modern training techniques (power skating, "the science of sports", etc.). This allows a player to develop their skill set to the fullest - so the end product is much better than it was 30, 40, 50 years ago.

Of course the best players have skills you can't teach (and they can play in any era), but that doesn't disprove the notion that hockey players today, as a whole, are the most talented they've ever been.

In addition, the game DOES evolve. Players try new things, new coaching strategies are implemented, etc. and these things are built upon generation after generation. The games of the 1950's were extremely primitive tactically and also in terms of what the players were doing on the ice. Even the 'highlight reel' goals of back then are laughable compared to todays.
This is the same reason why the NHL 50 years from now will be much more talented than it is today.
I do not think that willus3 is insulting anybody. He is just reacting to a post from a young person who uses condescending words to describe an era of hockey that he didn’t live through. When words like “primitive” and “laughable” are used to describe which many call the “golden era”, it gets my back up too.

I have been watching since the mid 50’s, and have seen how the game has changed over the years. There is no doubt that fringe players are better skaters & in better condition than fringe players in the 50’s. The problem is there are a lot more fringe players today due to the increase in teams and the increase in rosters. Back in the 50’s the NHL included the best 100 players in the world, which is a pretty concentrated level off talent. In addition, players had to go both ways & hard all the time to keep their jobs.

You may prefer watching today’s game which is only natural since you didn’t see the original six (I am assuming you are young). However, I preferred watching the original six. Call it nostalgia and you are maybe partly right. But don’t insult the era by calling it primitive & laughable. I didn’t see hockey pre 56 but would never insult players of previous eras.

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02-28-2007, 12:36 PM
  #109
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Originally Posted by pappyline View Post
The problem is there are a lot more fringe players today due to the increase in teams and the increase in rosters. Back in the 50’s the NHL included the best 100 players in the world, which is a pretty concentrated level off talent.
The problem with this is, pretty much every NHL player back then was North American. All the best Russians, Swedes, Czechs, etc., were playing in their country. I have no doubts that a player such as Vsevolod Bobrov would have been an utterly dominant force had he played in the NHL. and (if '72 is any indication) there were certainly many other players who were stars in european leagues of the time who would have been more than capable of being serious competitors in the NHL as well.

Just look at the NHL scoring race of the past 15-20 years. There are always a handful of Europeans among the best players in the world. And how many gold medals did the USSR win in hockey?

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02-28-2007, 01:29 PM
  #110
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Originally Posted by Darth Masao View Post
The problem with this is, pretty much every NHL player back then was North American. All the best Russians, Swedes, Czechs, etc., were playing in their country. I have no doubts that a player such as Vsevolod Bobrov would have been an utterly dominant force had he played in the NHL. and (if '72 is any indication) there were certainly many other players who were stars in european leagues of the time who would have been more than capable of being serious competitors in the NHL as well.

Just look at the NHL scoring race of the past 15-20 years. There are always a handful of Europeans among the best players in the world. And how many gold medals did the USSR win in hockey?

Remember, in the 40s and 50s we send the Allan Cup champions to the World Championships and we won most of the time. By the 60s, the rest of the world was competing with our Allan Cup champs and by the end of of that decade, the best the world had to offer was finally beating our Allan Cup champs consistently.

I suspect that the best Europe could offer would have been NHLers in the 70 and some of them would have been good. But, I don't believe the 70s would have had anywhere near the number of Europeans we see now even with the gates open.

Russian gold medals are pretty hollow when you consider they were won against our 3rd rate players.

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02-28-2007, 01:58 PM
  #111
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Remember, in the 40s and 50s we send the Allan Cup champions to the World Championships and we won most of the time. By the 60s, the rest of the world was competing with our Allan Cup champs and by the end of of that decade, the best the world had to offer was finally beating our Allan Cup champs consistently.

I suspect that the best Europe could offer would have been NHLers in the 70 and some of them would have been good. But, I don't believe the 70s would have had anywhere near the number of Europeans we see now even with the gates open.

Russian gold medals are pretty hollow when you consider they were won against our 3rd rate players.
Tumba and Bobrov probably could have played in the NHL in Howe's day. But, it would have just been the elite few, kinda like Canadian basketball players today... Just because the Canadian national team sucks, doesn't mean no Canadians are good enough.

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02-28-2007, 02:07 PM
  #112
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Originally Posted by Ogopogo View Post
Remember, in the 40s and 50s we send the Allan Cup champions to the World Championships and we won most of the time. By the 60s, the rest of the world was competing with our Allan Cup champs and by the end of of that decade, the best the world had to offer was finally beating our Allan Cup champs consistently.

I suspect that the best Europe could offer would have been NHLers in the 70 and some of them would have been good. But, I don't believe the 70s would have had anywhere near the number of Europeans we see now even with the gates open.

Russian gold medals are pretty hollow when you consider they were won against our 3rd rate players.
Agree, when you talk pre 67, there were at best a couple of Europeans that could have made the NHL. Canada's Allan cup team took the gold in 61 and the siver in 62 and were competitive through 1968. Canada won the bronze in 66, 67, 68 & with a couple of breaks could have won the gold in 68. There are a lot of great European players in the NHL today. This is great as it would be a pathetic spectacle without them today.

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02-28-2007, 03:13 PM
  #113
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I do not think that willus3 is insulting anybody. He is just reacting to a post from a young person who uses condescending words to describe an era of hockey that he didn’t live through. When words like “primitive” and “laughable” are used to describe which many call the “golden era”, it gets my back up too..
Your right...I do take back comments like 'laughable', terms like that are uncalled for. However, I think the word 'primitive' is justified. I've seen many games from that era and the game IS much more simplisitic in all aspects; there's no denying that.

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Originally Posted by pappyline View Post
I have been watching since the mid 50’s, and have seen how the game has changed over the years. There is no doubt that fringe players are better skaters & in better condition than fringe players in the 50’s. The problem is there are a lot more fringe players today due to the increase in teams and the increase in rosters. Back in the 50’s the NHL included the best 100 players in the world, which is a pretty concentrated level off talent. In addition, players had to go both ways & hard all the time to keep their jobs.
When comparing eras I agree that the NHL had a higher concentration of talent back then.
However, it must be remembered that the talent pool was only a fraction of what it is now. Basically, the 1950s NHL contained the most talent of a very small demographic. There are soooooo many more people playing the game today. I don't know the numbers, but I'm willing to bet there's 20-30 times more people playing hockey worldwide today. More people playing = more talent available.

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02-28-2007, 05:45 PM
  #114
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Originally Posted by pappyline View Post
I do not think that willus3 is insulting anybody. He is just reacting to a post from a young person who uses condescending words to describe an era of hockey that he didn’t live through. When words like “primitive” and “laughable” are used to describe which many call the “golden era”, it gets my back up too.
Honestly, get over it. You need to get a grip if an opinion other than your own "gets your back up" whatever that means. One, I'm pretty sure I never said the golden era was "laughable". And two, the word "primitive", which I stand by, is hardly the all out offensive assault of a comment that you're making it out to be. I even made a point to say I respect your opinion and was very respectful to you in general. This is a message board. Differentiating opinion is basically the point. Have thicker skin. I'm not even going to waste my time with the other guy's post. Given the way he jumped to the insults, I'd imagine it would be like arguing with a child. And that is about as undignified as it gets.

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02-28-2007, 05:50 PM
  #115
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Your right...I do take back comments like 'laughable', terms like that are uncalled for. However, I think the word 'primitive' is justified. I've seen many games from that era and the game IS much more simplisitic in all aspects; there's no denying that.

Ok about laughable. I too have said things that are uncalled for. However, I don't quite understand what you mean by primitive or simplistic. The basic player skills are the same to me. Are you talking about coaching strategy. If so, explain how the "trap" has improved hockey as a spectator sport.



When comparing eras I agree that the NHL had a higher concentration of talent back then.
However, it must be remembered that the talent pool was only a fraction of what it is now. Basically, the 1950s NHL contained the most talent of a very small demographic. There are soooooo many more people playing the game today. I don't know the numbers, but I'm willing to bet there's 20-30 times more people playing hockey worldwide today. More people playing = more talent available.
Agree that the secondary talent level is better today. However I think the first tier level was better in the 50's. For example in 1959, we had moore, beliveau, Geoffrion. masurice & Henri Richard, Harvey, Johnson, Plante, Bucyk, Mohns, Flaman, lindsay, sloan, litzenberger, Hull, Vaskp, hall, Mahovolich, Horton, Brewer, bower, Bathgate, gadsby, howell, worsely, Howe, ullman, delvecchio, Pronovost, kelly, sawchuk. I just don't see that depth of talent in todays NHL even with all the great European players. Plus the talent is dispersed over 30 teams, not 6.

My point is that, from sombody that has watched for 40 years, it was more entertaining to watch in the 50's.

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02-28-2007, 05:54 PM
  #116
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My point is that, from sombody that has watched for 40 years, it was more entertaining to watch in the 50's.
And my point is that, ANYBODY who has done something for 40 years, will say it was better at the beginning. That's not a shot at you at all. It's human nature.

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02-28-2007, 06:06 PM
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And my point is that, ANYBODY who has done something for 40 years, will say it was better at the beginning. That's not a shot at you at all. It's human nature.
And ANYBODY that is a kid today, will say its better to-day. Its human nature. By the way, this isn't a shot at you.

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02-28-2007, 06:11 PM
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Honestly, get over it. You need to get a grip if an opinion other than your own "gets your back up" whatever that means. One, I'm pretty sure I never said the golden era was "laughable". And two, the word "primitive", which I stand by, is hardly the all out offensive assault of a comment that you're making it out to be. I even made a point to say I respect your opinion and was very respectful to you in general. This is a message board. Differentiating opinion is basically the point. Have thicker skin. I'm not even going to waste my time with the other guy's post. Given the way he jumped to the insults, I'd imagine it would be like arguing with a child. And that is about as undignified as it gets.
You have a very arrogant attitude. I don't have a problem with debate. That what these boards are all about. You are entitled to express your opinion and so am I. I respect everyone's opinion whether I agree with it or not. However, there are times, when I don't respect the way opinions are presented.

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02-28-2007, 06:14 PM
  #119
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And ANYBODY that is a kid today, will say its better to-day. Its human nature. By the way, this isn't a shot at you.
Actually it's human nature to glorify the past not the present. So no, that's not true in fact. Example? I think the music of the 60's and 70's is far better than the music of my generation. I also believe baseball was better longer ago and that it has regressed as a sport. That's just not the case with hockey. Good try at being cute though.

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02-28-2007, 06:16 PM
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Actually it's human nature to glorify the past not the present. So no, that's not true in fact. Example? I think the music of the 60's and 70's is far better than the music of my generation. I also believe baseball was better longer ago and that it has regressed as a sport. That's just not the case with hockey. Good try at being cute though.
So "evolution" only applies to hockey. Interesting.

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02-28-2007, 06:18 PM
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You have a very arrogant attitude. I don't have a problem with debate. That what these boards are all about. You are entitled to express your opinion and so am I. I respect everyone's opinion whether I agree with it or not. However, there are times, when I don't respect the way opinions are presented.
Do you whine this much in your life outside of this website? I really hope not. As I said, I made a point to say that I respect your opinion. I see very little arrogance in that. Yet my opinion still "gets your back up". You can disguise it all you want, but the simple fact is that you clearly don't like somebody presenting an opinion other than your own in a well thought out manner.

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02-28-2007, 06:20 PM
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Do you whine this much in your life outside of this website? I really hope not. As I said, I made a point to say that I respect your opinion. I see very little arrogance in that. Yet my opinion still "gets your back up". You can disguise it all you want, but the simple fact is that you clearly don't like somebody presenting an opinion other than your own in a well thought out manner.
I think it is time to end this sniping. LOL.

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02-28-2007, 06:20 PM
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So "evolution" only applies to hockey. Interesting.
Umm no. Did I say it was the only thing that has evolved? That's kind of funny because I surely don't remember it. What I did say was that hockey is ONE OF the things that clearly has evolved. Regression is just as possible as evolution however. You are aware of that I'm sure though.

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02-28-2007, 11:47 PM
  #124
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Agree that the secondary talent level is better today. However I think the first tier level was better in the 50's. For example in 1959, we had moore, beliveau, Geoffrion. masurice & Henri Richard, Harvey, Johnson, Plante, Bucyk, Mohns, Flaman, lindsay, sloan, litzenberger, Hull, Vaskp, hall, Mahovolich, Horton, Brewer, bower, Bathgate, gadsby, howell, worsely, Howe, ullman, delvecchio, Pronovost, kelly, sawchuk. I just don't see that depth of talent in todays NHL even with all the great European players. Plus the talent is dispersed over 30 teams, not 6.

My point is that, from sombody that has watched for 40 years, it was more entertaining to watch in the 50's.
The talent depth of the 1950s only seemed better because (as you have admitted) the secondary talent was sub-par.

With so many more players playing today (not only in Canada but all over the world), the overall talent level has skyrockted, hence, there's not gonna be a lot of seperation between the 'elite' and second tier 'elite' and so forth. That's why the best players of the 1950s wouldn't be as dominant in today's game...there's simply more talent now.


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03-01-2007, 06:37 AM
  #125
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The talent depth of the 1950s only seemed better because (as you have admitted) the secondary talent was sub-par.

With so many more players playing today (not only in Canada but all over the world), the overall talent level has skyrockted, hence, there's not gonna be a lot of seperation between the 'elite' and second tier 'elite' and so forth. That's why the best players of the 1950s wouldn't be as dominant in today's game...there's simply more talent now.
I did agree that the secondary talent is better today but did not say the secondary talent in the original six was sub-par. The difference isn't all that great. Todays secondary players may be better skaters & are in better physical condition. However, there is not much difference in that old intangible---skill & knowing how to play the game.

Anyways, itwas an interesting debate and you have raised some good points. You like todays game & I preferred the original six. To each his own.

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