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LaFleur - Bossy - Jagr

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Old
06-18-2007, 09:33 PM
  #1
John Flyers Fan
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LaFleur - Bossy - Jagr

The 3 dominant RW's of the past 30 years

LaFleur

4 Stanley Cups
3 Art Ross trophies
2 Hart Trophies
3 Pearson Awards
1 Conn Smythe

6 - 50 goal seasons (1 - 60)
6 - 115+ point seasons
1 - lead league in goals
1 - lead league in assists
1 - lead league in playoff points
2 - tied lead league in playoff points

6 time 1st team all-star
0 time 2nd team all-star

Other than his big 6 years, never topped 30 goals or 85 points.

Bossy

4 Stanley Cups
1 - Calder
1 - Conn Smythe
3 - Lady Byngs

9 - 50 goal seaons (5 - 60) (every full season played)
7 - 115+ point seasons

The next set of numbers is going to exclude Gretzky, whose number dwarf everyone else)

3 - lead league in goals
1 - lead league in playoff points
1 - lead league in points

5 time 1st team all-star
3 time 2nd team all-star

Bad back forced retirement.

Jagr

2 Stanley Cups

5 Art Ross
1 Hart Trophy
3 Pearson awards
I thought about excluding Lemieux's numbers, but considering Jagr oftehn played with ihm, didn't think it was fair

4 - 50 goal seasons (lockout prorated)
5 - 120+ point seasons (lockout prorated)
3 - led league in assists

7 time 1st team all-star
1 time 2nd team all-star

Jagr had down seasons in Washington. He also doesn't have the playoff dominance that LaFleur and Bossy had. Part of that is that only during Jagr's 18-20yr old seasons did he play on a great team.


Last edited by John Flyers Fan: 06-18-2007 at 09:41 PM.
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Old
06-18-2007, 09:37 PM
  #2
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You should probably put the Pearson in there as well, since Lafleur and Jagr both have 3 of them.

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06-18-2007, 09:39 PM
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Generally you see LaFleur ranked considerably higher than either Bossy or Jagr.

The Hockey News poll had LaFleur at 11, Bossy at 20, and Jagr at 37. Obviously Jagr has done plenty since then, that he'd probably be in the 18 - 28 range at this point.


Personally I don't see LaFleur at 11. Those 6 seasons were absolutely great, but they weren't at an Orr - Gretzky level, and I think with only the 6 big years 11 is too high.


I also think the three are close enough that it depends up[on the make-up of the team as to which I would rather have.


If I could pick one for the mid-80's Flyers that had trouble getting over the hump against the Gretzky Oilers I would choose LaFleur. We could have used his speed and game breaking ability to help us get over the hump.

If I could pick one for the Lindros led Flyers of the late 90's it would be Bossy. Lindros/ Bossy would have been a devastating combination, that would have resulted in at least one Cup.

If I could choose one to play for the Flyers next year it would be Jagr. The Flyers desperatly need a playmaker, and need someone that can do a lot on their own and create much needed offense. Of the three I think Jagr would be the best on team taht lacks other top talent around him.

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06-18-2007, 09:46 PM
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The all-time drafts rank them all 3-5, and I don't think you can make an argument one of them belongs at 2 or 6. Boo to Bossy for getting hurt, yay to Guy LaFleur and Jaromir Jagr for having two of the best hockey names ever. Who am I kidding? Yay to all three for having some of the best hockey names of all time.

If I chose one of them to play for the Stars next year, it would be LaFleur. He played before I was born, but when I talk to old people, they say he was the best, most exciting offensive player of his era, and that he rarely had bad games.

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06-19-2007, 12:07 AM
  #5
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In the order you listed them, JFF.

Lafleur was the one who dominated in terms of both goal scoring and playmaking ability. He might be the most exciting winger to ever play the game. He could dominate with his goal scoring or his playmaking ability. Outside of Gretzky, Lemieux and Howe, nobody has had a run of at least five years like Guy did. He won Cups, Harts, Pearsons, Art Rosses, and a Conn Smythe. And he had that ability to draw people with his charisma. Everything you'd want in a franchise player, except for maybe a touch of self-control.

The thing that stands out about Bossy is that he dominated one aspect of the game - goal scoring - like few ever have. He had an overpowering shot and a rapid release. His playmkaing skills were very underrated, too. Not much defensively, but neither were Gretzky, Lemieux, Jagr and many of the top offensive stars in the post Original Six era. A terrific post-season portfolio. Would have won multiple Art Ross Trophies if not for the competition provided by Gretzky.

Jagr's a marvellous offensive talent. One of the benchmarks for power skating and stickhandling. Almost impossible to knock off the puck. A gifted playmaker who was also a very dangerous goal scorer. His competition for the Art Ross wasn't as tough as Lafleur's, and it certainly wasn't as tough as Bossy's. One thing that stands out for Lafleur and Bossy that you can't say about Jagr: Lafleur and Bossy dominated the playoffs at their peak. Did Jagr ever manage to take his play to another level from 1995 to 2000 once the most important hockey started?

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06-19-2007, 12:22 AM
  #6
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All three are very close. I would put them in the following order Lafleur, Bossy and then Jagr.

Lafleur dominated tall aspects of the offensive game where as Bossy only really dominated by scoring goals. He wasn't as near as good as Lafleur in the playmaking department. What hurts Jagr is his playoff performance. He never has brought his game to the next level like Lafleur and Bossy have.

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Old
06-19-2007, 07:31 AM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan View Post
Personally I don't see LaFleur at 11. Those 6 seasons were absolutely great, but they weren't at an Orr - Gretzky level, and I think with only the 6 big years 11 is too high.

I have no problem with Guy being at #11. Yes outside of '74-80 he didnt dominate. But even after '80 he had decent seasons that would have been great had he not been injured. But you cant ignore those 6 huge seasons. You could count on one hand the amount of players who have been that much better than the rest of the league over Lafleur. Gretzky, Lemieux, Orr, Howe would be the first ones, after that I cant think of any. Richard never had a span where he was clearly the best in the game for several years, even Jagr had Hasek and Kariya and Lindros at least right there with him for times.

In '76, '77, '78 he won the Art Ross. In '76, '77, '78, '79 he won the Cup. In '77, '78 he won the Hart. In '76, '77, '78 he won the Pearson. In '78 he led the league in +/-. In '77 he won the Conn Smythe. In '75, '76, '77, '78, '79, '80 he was a first team all-star. He led the playoffs in points in '77, '78 and '79. Jagr never had that all around dominance. Neither did Bossy. With Bossy you had Gretzky above him and even if that doenst count a lot of people would put Trottier ahead of him in his prime and that isnt outlandish. Jagr was the best forward in the league but other than '98-99 there werent a lot of years where it was flat out clear cut.

In 1977 or 1978 you would have been laughed out of the bar if you thought anyone other than Lafleur was the best in the league. From '75-80 he was the best IMO. This is a time when he had stiff competition too. Clarke, Perreault Sittler, Potvin, Trottier, Dionne and even his own teammate Robinson werent his equal in those years. It's one thing to win the Art Ross multiple times straight as Jagr did. But its another thing to win it, then win the Cup and be the best player on the Cup team and in the league. Neither Jagr or Bossy did that like Guy.

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06-19-2007, 07:38 AM
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Bless Canada View Post
One thing that stands out for Lafleur and Bossy that you can't say about Jagr: Lafleur and Bossy dominated the playoffs at their peak. Did Jagr ever manage to take his play to another level from 1995 to 2000 once the most important hockey started?
True, but when both Bossy and LaFleur were in their prime they were surrounded by Hall of Famers. Jagr played with Hall of Famers early in his career, but it's been a while since he's been surrounded by top talent.

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06-19-2007, 07:52 AM
  #9
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Jagr should have had a head-and-shoulders above type of career, midway between the lafleurs, bossys and the marios, gretzs... but didnt... still better than his contemporaries, but could have been much more

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06-19-2007, 01:42 PM
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When era is taken into account, I think Jagr has to be ahead of Bossy on this list.

Their 5 best offensive totals:

Bossy
64 83 147
69 57 126
61 62 123
68 51 119
60 58 118

Jagr
62 87 149
44 83 127
54 69 123
52 69 121
32 38 70 (in 48 games due to lockout...pro-rated to around 118 pts)

Even without adjusting for era, Jagr actually has the better point totals.

When I use the adjusted formula that Hockey Outsider graciously provided me with a little while ago, it comes out something like this:

Bossy
50 61 111
61 48 109
51 48 99
51 46 97
49 47 96

Jagr
54 94 148
64 83 147
61 74 135
58 65 124
57 66 123

Not an exact science by any means, but it really displays just how big a difference there was in scoring between the early 80's and the late 90's.

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Old
06-19-2007, 02:10 PM
  #11
jiggs 10
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Just for conversation's sake, where is Jarri Kurri? He was at least as dangerous in his prime as Jagr, and better defensively. Not saying he was the equal of Lafleur or Bassy, because he wasn't, really. But he was THE dominant right wing in the NHL from 1985-1992 or so (especially after Bossy was forced to retire in 1987), and continued to be a very good, serviceable player for many years after his prime.

By the way, I would rate Lafleur #1 BY A WHISKER over Bossy, simply because he was a little more dynamic. Bossy was his equal as a playmaker (always an underrated passer, but he wasn't), probably a better goal scorer, and a good defensive player (not great, merely good). But Lafleur could dictate the direction of a game like few others ever have with just one or two rushes up the ice. The only thing I wonder about is how many fewer goals he would score today with his "blistering blast" from the right wing boards? Goalies today would not EVER let those in, like they did in the tiny pad era! Not saying he wouldn't sneak a few in here and there, but certainly not the 18-20 slapshot goals he scored in 1975-1980! That's my only nit-pick with Lafleur.

Jagr is IMO one of the 10 best right wings in the history of the NHL. Not one of the 10 best PLAYERS, one of the ten best RWs. He had all the talent in the world, and every so often would use it in wonderous ways. But too often, he was a diva on and off the ice and caused problems. Not in a cancerous way like some other players have, but by just not trying hard when he didn't want to. If he had his talent and Steve Yzerman's will to win, boy, he'd have been the best player to ever play the game! Of course, you could say the same thing about Mario, too!

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06-19-2007, 02:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jiggs 10 View Post
Just for conversation's sake, where is Jarri Kurri? He was at least as dangerous in his prime as Jagr, and better defensively. Not saying he was the equal of Lafleur or Bassy, because he wasn't, really. But he was THE dominant right wing in the NHL from 1985-1992 or so (especially after Bossy was forced to retire in 1987), and continued to be a very good, serviceable player for many years after his prime.
I'd have Kurri just a step below these three. Certainly the best defensively, but still a notch or two below these three offensively despite his great numbers.

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06-19-2007, 02:25 PM
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Oh, I agree. I was just bringing his name up to show there were more than just those 3 that were great in the last 40 years. But Kurri would probably be my 4th on that list of names, too.

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06-19-2007, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan View Post
I'd have Kurri just a step below these three. Certainly the best defensively, but still a notch or two below these three offensively despite his great numbers.
Yeah, I'd have him a notch below with Brett Hull.

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06-19-2007, 03:21 PM
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Yeah, I'd have him a notch below with Brett Hull.
Good pick I was going to say Kurri > Hull given the playoff record but Hull is no slouch when it comes to playoffs too. I can see anything else other than Kurri = Hull. They're still below Jagr, Bossy and Guy though.

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06-19-2007, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arrbez View Post
When era is taken into account, I think Jagr has to be ahead of Bossy on this list.

Their 5 best offensive totals:

Bossy
64 83 147
69 57 126
61 62 123
68 51 119
60 58 118

Jagr
62 87 149
44 83 127
54 69 123
52 69 121
32 38 70 (in 48 games due to lockout...pro-rated to around 118 pts)

Even without adjusting for era, Jagr actually has the better point totals.

When I use the adjusted formula that Hockey Outsider graciously provided me with a little while ago, it comes out something like this:

Bossy
50 61 111
61 48 109
51 48 99
51 46 97
49 47 96

Jagr
54 94 148
64 83 147
61 74 135
58 65 124
57 66 123

Not an exact science by any means, but it really displays just how big a difference there was in scoring between the early 80's and the late 90's.
I would take Bossy on my team over Jagr ANY day of the year. Only god knows what Mike wouldve been able to accomplish if given the amount of time most players put into their careers these days.

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Old
06-19-2007, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by jiggs 10 View Post
Oh, I agree. I was just bringing his name up to show there were more than just those 3 that were great in the last 40 years. But Kurri would probably be my 4th on that list of names, too.
I would definitely rate Kurri ahead of Brett Hull. Kurri rivaled Hull in terms of hand-eye coordination, shot release and shot accuracy (probably not as hard of a shooter as Hull), but was a much better playmaker than Hull, a smarter player and much, much better defensively. Plus, Kurri was a better playoff player. Hull had some great playoffs, but he was a guy who was either terrific in the post-season, or a total non-factor.

I would actually take Boom Boom Geoffrion, and probably Charlie Conacher and Andy Bathgate, ahead of Kurri. Boom Boom Geoffrion had the great shooting and offensive abilities, but his grit is really underrated. And Boom Boom is in a very select group of players (I think Gretzky and Messier are the only other ones) with eight straight double-digit post-seasons. That's huge in my books. One of the best post-season performers ever.

Charlie Conacher was a power forward long before the term was coined for hockey. 6'1 and over 200 pounds. Doesn't seem like that big, but it's actually very close to Iginla/Neely size. Very strong, physical and a shot that could dent rink boards. Only thing that holds him back is he doesn't have the playoff portfolio of a Kurri or a Geoffrion.

Andy Bathgate is one of the most consistent players ever. Eight straight seasons of at least 70 points. Only other player during the Original 6 to do that was Gordie Howe. Good enough to earn all-star spots when Howe, Richard and Geoffrion were around. Again, not the dominant playoff portfolio that Geoffrion has, but only a Geoffrion, Beliveau, Bobby Hull, Teeder Kennedy or Rocket Richard would put up big playoff numbers on those Ranger teams. He might be the most underrated offensive player of all-time.

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06-19-2007, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Bless Canada View Post
I would definitely rate Kurri ahead of Brett Hull. Kurri rivaled Hull in terms of hand-eye coordination, shot release and shot accuracy (probably not as hard of a shooter as Hull), but was a much better playmaker than Hull, a smarter player and much, much better defensively. Plus, Kurri was a better playoff player. Hull had some great playoffs, but he was a guy who was either terrific in the post-season, or a total non-factor.

I would actually take Boom Boom Geoffrion, and probably Charlie Conacher and Andy Bathgate, ahead of Kurri. Boom Boom Geoffrion had the great shooting and offensive abilities, but his grit is really underrated. And Boom Boom is in a very select group of players (I think Gretzky and Messier are the only other ones) with eight straight double-digit post-seasons. That's huge in my books. One of the best post-season performers ever.

Charlie Conacher was a power forward long before the term was coined for hockey. 6'1 and over 200 pounds. Doesn't seem like that big, but it's actually very close to Iginla/Neely size. Very strong, physical and a shot that could dent rink boards. Only thing that holds him back is he doesn't have the playoff portfolio of a Kurri or a Geoffrion.

Andy Bathgate is one of the most consistent players ever. Eight straight seasons of at least 70 points. Only other player during the Original 6 to do that was Gordie Howe. Good enough to earn all-star spots when Howe, Richard and Geoffrion were around. Again, not the dominant playoff portfolio that Geoffrion has, but only a Geoffrion, Beliveau, Bobby Hull, Teeder Kennedy or Rocket Richard would put up big playoff numbers on those Ranger teams. He might be the most underrated offensive player of all-time.

I think we were (or at least I was) speaking of just RWers of the past 30 years.

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06-19-2007, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by God Bless Canada View Post
One thing that stands out for Lafleur and Bossy that you can't say about Jagr: Lafleur and Bossy dominated the playoffs at their peak. Did Jagr ever manage to take his play to another level from 1995 to 2000 once the most important hockey started?
Yes. You could point specifically to 1999. Jagr played on a groin injury so bad he could barely stand on his skates. He pretty muched single handedly won games 6 and 7 in the 8th seeded Pens upset series victory.

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06-19-2007, 05:18 PM
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I'd say that Lafleur's drop in production is less dramatic than most people believe.

Lafleur was injured in 1981. Had he been healthy the entire season, he would have scored 43 goals, 92 assists and 135 points. That would have put him 2nd in assists (behind Gretzky) and 2nd in points (behind Gretzky, tied with Dionne). Of course, I'm not giving him credit for things he didn't accomplish, but it does show that Lafleur still had dominant talent after his 6-year run.

Even in 1982 and 1983, Lafleur was on track for 102 points and 92 points, respectively.

Overall, #11 is about right (or even a bit too high) for Lafleur. But his drop in production seems to be overrated by almost everyone.

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06-19-2007, 09:17 PM
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Originally Posted by God Bless Canada View Post

I would actually take Boom Boom Geoffrion, and probably Charlie Conacher and Andy Bathgate, ahead of Kurri. Boom Boom Geoffrion had the great shooting and offensive abilities, but his grit is really underrated. And Boom Boom is in a very select group of players (I think Gretzky and Messier are the only other ones) with eight straight double-digit post-seasons. That's huge in my books. One of the best post-season performers ever.
You're right about Boom Boom being an underrated playoff performer, but I also think Kurri doesn't get enough credit for his playoff performances either. Top-6 in points six times, and lead the playoffs in goals outright four times in five years ('84, '85, '87, '88). I'm pretty sure he's the only guy to do that. (The Rocket also led four times, two of those times he was tied with another player)

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06-20-2007, 10:35 AM
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lets remember this about mike bossy.
he retired at 30!
given 5 more seasons at a 30 goal clip( probably a low number given that the age of thirty is entering his prime) he would have scored 723 goals.
the guy AVERAGED 57 goals a year in his carreer. he played 729? games and scored 573 goals.
simply amazing.

lafleur ...absolutely dominated the late 70's. he was the nhl's best winger( and IMO the best overall player. )so that beefs up his worth past just numbers.

if i'm not mistaken both lafleur and bossy were heavy smokers. i know the rumor was bossy used to smoke 3 or 4 between periods.

as for jagr i have to wait to see the whole career play out.

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06-20-2007, 10:47 AM
  #23
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Originally Posted by Hockey Outsider View Post
I'd say that Lafleur's drop in production is less dramatic than most people believe.

Lafleur was injured in 1981. Had he been healthy the entire season, he would have scored 43 goals, 92 assists and 135 points. That would have put him 2nd in assists (behind Gretzky) and 2nd in points (behind Gretzky, tied with Dionne). Of course, I'm not giving him credit for things he didn't accomplish, but it does show that Lafleur still had dominant talent after his 6-year run.

Even in 1982 and 1983, Lafleur was on track for 102 points and 92 points, respectively.

Overall, #11 is about right (or even a bit too high) for Lafleur. But his drop in production seems to be overrated by almost everyone.

Agreed that his ability didn't dramatically diminish, but staying healthy is part of the equation. Just like Jagr not playing up to his abilities in Washington is part of hi story.

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06-20-2007, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by God Bless Canada View Post
Jagr's a marvellous offensive talent. One of the benchmarks for power skating and stickhandling. Almost impossible to knock off the puck. A gifted playmaker who was also a very dangerous goal scorer. His competition for the Art Ross wasn't as tough as Lafleur's, and it certainly wasn't as tough as Bossy's. One thing that stands out for Lafleur and Bossy that you can't say about Jagr: Lafleur and Bossy dominated the playoffs at their peak. Did Jagr ever manage to take his play to another level from 1995 to 2000 once the most important hockey started?

Well, he was fifth among playoff point scorers over that period, and played 20-30+ games fewer than the four guys ahead of him (Fedorov, Sakic, Forsberg and Yzerman). He scored 83 points in 61 games in the worst offensive environment in the modern era. I'd say that qualifies.

If I had a choice of drafting any of the three at the beginning of their career, I'd take Jagr ahead of both Lafleur and Bossy, and that's not a patch on either of them.

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06-20-2007, 02:39 PM
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Of course, you could say the same thing about Mario, too!
But you could also say Mario was the best, something that you could never say about Jagr...

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