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How many 1st line center there is in the NHL?

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:07 PM
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by starglider View Post
So that's 20 players. But fewer than 20 teams are represented - 16 in fact. Only half the teams in the league have a first line center? This makes no sense. By definition every team has a first line center - the player who centers their first line! It goes without saying that some are stronger than others, but some teams are stronger than others, too. Holding everyone to such a high standard is why lots of Habs fans won't be happy until we have Crosby centering our top line - and Lecavalier on the second.
The reality is that not every team has a true first line center. Some of them have 2, and others have 0. If you lower the bar, then what does first line center even mean anymore? I look at first line centers based on how they "fit" in a lineup. If you want to be truly competitive, you want to see that really good number 1 guy down the middle. You can keep lowering standards, but then that just means every team has a first line center. But what does that tell you exactly? In order for it to mean, some teams have to not have first line centers.

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:14 PM
  #27
Le Tricolore
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Originally Posted by ChaoticEntity View Post
You judge based on talent, not on how many teams there are.

Crosby
Malkin
Lecavalier
Getzlaf
Thornton
Kopitar
Roy
Spezza
Savard
Ribeiro
Mike Richards
Carter
Brad Richards
Backstrom
Eric Staal
Paul Stastny
Jonathan Toews
Zetterberg
Datsyuk
Henrik Sedin

Jason Arnott and Olli Jokinen are borderline, but they're really a tier below these other guys. Tavares is good, but it's too early to tell how good he is right now.

As for the rest - not first line center. I'm looking at you, Scott Gomez.
If you include guys like Derek Roy, you have to include Scott Gomez.

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:18 PM
  #28
Kirk Muller
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If I was going to put it in point totals, the lowest a first line center should have is say 60 points in 82 games.

If your first line center is putting up 50-55 points, then ideally he is a number 2 center and more likely putting up over 50 points because there is no one else.

I would say there are probably 25 legitimate number one centers with a boatload playing as number one centers but are ideally number 2's.

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:20 PM
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaoticEntity View Post
The reality is that not every team has a true first line center. Some of them have 2, and others have 0. If you lower the bar, then what does first line center even mean anymore? I look at first line centers based on how they "fit" in a lineup. If you want to be truly competitive, you want to see that really good number 1 guy down the middle. You can keep lowering standards, but then that just means every team has a first line center. But what does that tell you exactly? In order for it to mean, some teams have to not have first line centers.
so, unless you're in the PPG or 100 pts a season category, cant be a #1 C ?

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:21 PM
  #30
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Originally Posted by Le Tricolore View Post
If you include guys like Derek Roy, you have to include Scott Gomez.
True, but that being said, Roy is a better goal scorer and defensive player. If we had a big center to center 1st or 2nd line, I wouldn't mind having a guy like roy for the leftover top 2 center spot, way more than gomez.

I'd like to think a first line C can make 70ish or so points over 82 games. Cuz honestly, if a first line center is good for say 60 points, what's a second line center good for on the low end, 30? I know some 4th line center who should be second line centers then.

If a scale would be used i'd probably say, over 82 games:

Elite center 85 points+
1st line center 65-85 points
2nd line center 45-65 points
3rd line center 25-45
4th line center 0-25

That a fair scale?


Last edited by Habs10Habs: 10-20-2009 at 11:43 AM. Reason: Merge
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Old
10-19-2009, 03:33 PM
  #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Le Tricolore View Post
If you include guys like Derek Roy, you have to include Scott Gomez.
Roy was borderline. Right now, he's better than Gomez by the amount it takes for me to differentiate between a number 1 and a number 2.

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:39 PM
  #32
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Originally Posted by ECWHSWI View Post
so, unless you're in the PPG or 100 pts a season category, cant be a #1 C ?
Unless you are skilled enough and have shown it, then no you are not a first line center.

What's the point of calling everyone a first line center? Just so you can be happy about your team?

There's obviously a huge disparity between someone like Zetterberg and a player like Scott Gomez or Nik Antropov. It's like calling Craig Rivet your number 1 because you have no one else. A lot of teams just won't have all the pieces, especially in a cap era.

And even the gap between Stastny and Gomez is big. But you don't want to call Stastny elite because then you run out of words to call Getzlaf to differentiate between Getzlaf and Stastny. You can always use the tier method and call Gomez a third tier first liner, but unless you add the words "third tier" then you're just giving Gomez too much credit in order for you to feel better about your team. Andrei Markov and Kevin Bieksa are obviously not of the same caliber and there should be a way for you to demonstrate this.

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:52 PM
  #33
Joey
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I hate the 30 teams = 30 first line centers rule


Just because there's 30 teams doesn't mean there's 30 #1 goalies in the league

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:54 PM
  #34
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Originally Posted by otto bond View Post
30:d
That was my answer... 30..

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Old
10-19-2009, 03:58 PM
  #35
Hackett
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To me, a bonafide first line centre generally should be able to produce 70 points.

Pleks has had 69 before, and gomez has been over 70 for some seasons

So we may or may not have a 1st line centre.

Its alot more clear cut with toronto, they dont have one.

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Old
10-19-2009, 04:14 PM
  #36
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I don't understand those who say the number of teams is irrelevant to the discussion. That makes no sense.

If overnight, Bettman decided to cut the league down to 10 teams, there would be 10 number one centres. If the league doubled overnight, there would be twice as many 1st line centres.

The top 30 centres are first-line centres. Some teams will have more than one and some teams won't have any, but in the end, it balances out to 30 of them.

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Old
10-19-2009, 04:22 PM
  #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by starglider View Post
So that's 20 players. But fewer than 20 teams are represented - 16 in fact. Only half the teams in the league have a first line center? This makes no sense. By definition every team has a first line center - the player who centers their first line! It goes without saying that some are stronger than others, but some teams are stronger than others, too. Holding everyone to such a high standard is why lots of Habs fans won't be happy until we have Crosby centering our top line - and Lecavalier on the second.




Only 10 centers were PPG or better last year. Your standards are a bit too high, no?
OK but one thing I will say, if a guy puts up 5pts within ppg or very close, they can count too. Like 75pts in 82 games even, I'd accept that. Maybe my standards are a little too high, but I'm basing it on the HF standard more then anything so that's probably why. Nobody would consider Gomez a 1st line C if he won't put out 80pts, so therefore 10 centers might make sense. Wouldn't you find your standards a little too low if you started saying people with below 70pts are a 1st line center as well?

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Old
10-19-2009, 04:24 PM
  #38
DDs not undersized
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Elite 1st line centers (6)

Sidney Crosby
Evgeni Malkin
Ryan Getzlaf
Eric Staal
Marc Savard
Joe Thornton

Good 1st line centers (12)

Vincent Lecavalier
Jason Spezza
Henrik Zetterberg
Mike Richards
Jeff Carter
Niklas Backstrom
Derek Roy
Jonathan Toews
Paul Stastny
Mike Ribeiro
Anze Kopitar
Henrik Sedin

Borderline 1st line centers (8)

Mikko Koivu
Brad Richards
Scott Gomez
Olli Jokinen
Jason Arnott
Travis Zajac
John Tavares
Andy MacDonald

Current 1st line centers who should be limited to 2nd line duties

Nik Antropov
Shawn Horcoff
Stephen Weiss
Chris Drury
(any Phoenix current 1st line center)
Matt Stajan

Players with 1st line center potential (12)

David Krejci
Tim Connolly (but too injury prone)
Matt Duchene
Tomas Plekanec
Brandon Dubinsky
Daniel Brière (on a weak team)
Jordan Staal
Derick Brassard
Patrik Berglund
Patrick Marleau (he would be on many teams)
Steven Stamkos
Ryan Kesler

Total :

18 true 1st line centers.

38 1st line players if you include the borderline ones and those with the potential to become one.


Last edited by DDs not undersized: 10-19-2009 at 04:34 PM.
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Old
10-19-2009, 04:27 PM
  #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fufonzo View Post
I don't understand those who say the number of teams is irrelevant to the discussion. That makes no sense.

If overnight, Bettman decided to cut the league down to 10 teams, there would be 10 number one centres. If the league doubled overnight, there would be twice as many 1st line centres.

The top 30 centres are first-line centres. Some teams will have more than one and some teams won't have any, but in the end, it balances out to 30 of them.
Right on. It's absurd to think that they're less than 30 1st line center in the NHL.... It's like asking how many NHL players there is in the NHL and answering less than the actual number. I understand that some of them dont belong in the big league, but they still are NHL players...

So, how many 4th line center there is in the NHL?

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Old
10-19-2009, 04:34 PM
  #40
bipolarhabfan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LyricalLyricist View Post
I'd like to think a first line C can make 70ish or so points over 82 games. Cuz honestly, if a first line center is good for say 60 points, what's a second line center good for on the low end, 30? I know some 4th line center who should be second line centers then.

If a scale would be used i'd probably say, over 82 games:

Elite center 85 points+
1st line center 65-85 points
2nd line center 45-65 points
3rd line center 25-45
4th line center 0-25

That a fair scale?
Works for me.

One of the main criteria for a first line is points. If they do not put up a .75 or above PPG ratio than they are not first liners.

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Old
10-19-2009, 04:51 PM
  #41
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Originally Posted by la25ecoupe View Post
Crosby, Malkin, Ovechkin and Kolvalchuk
This post is scary because I know you were serious.

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Old
10-19-2009, 05:08 PM
  #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Partisan du CH View Post
Elite 1st line centers (6)

Sidney Crosby
Evgeni Malkin
Ryan Getzlaf
Eric Staal
Marc Savard
Joe Thornton

Good 1st line centers (12)

Vincent Lecavalier
Jason Spezza
Henrik Zetterberg
Mike Richards
Jeff Carter
Niklas Backstrom
Derek Roy
Jonathan Toews
Paul Stastny
Mike Ribeiro
Anze Kopitar
Henrik Sedin

Borderline 1st line centers (8)

Mikko Koivu
Brad Richards
Scott Gomez
Olli Jokinen
Jason Arnott
Travis Zajac
John Tavares
Andy MacDonald

Current 1st line centers who should be limited to 2nd line duties

Nik Antropov
Shawn Horcoff
Stephen Weiss
Chris Drury
(any Phoenix current 1st line center)
Matt Stajan

Players with 1st line center potential (12)

David Krejci
Tim Connolly (but too injury prone)
Matt Duchene
Tomas Plekanec
Brandon Dubinsky
Daniel Brière (on a weak team)
Jordan Staal
Derick Brassard
Patrik Berglund
Patrick Marleau (he would be on many teams)
Steven Stamkos
Ryan Kesler

Total :

18 true 1st line centers.

38 1st line players if you include the borderline ones and those with the potential to become one.
I would add Datsyuk in elite.

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Old
10-19-2009, 05:10 PM
  #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaoticEntity View Post
You judge based on talent, not on how many teams there are.

Crosby
Malkin
Lecavalier
Getzlaf
Thornton
Kopitar
Roy
Spezza
Savard
Ribeiro
Mike Richards
Carter
Brad Richards
Backstrom
Eric Staal
Paul Stastny
Jonathan Toews
Zetterberg
Datsyuk
Henrik Sedin

Jason Arnott and Olli Jokinen are borderline, but they're really a tier below these other guys. Tavares is good, but it's too early to tell how good he is right now.

As for the rest - not first line center. I'm looking at you, Scott Gomez.
Sorry can't have it both ways, if Ribs is on this list so is Gomez.

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Old
10-19-2009, 05:20 PM
  #44
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Originally Posted by habfan1968 View Post
Sorry can't have it both ways, if Ribs is on this list so is Gomez.
What?

I know its cool to hate Ribeiro. But personal dislike aside, in the past couple seasons Ribeiro has come on strong and has most definitely established himself as a #1 center.

Last year 78 points - 11th in the whole league among centers.
Year before - 83 points, 6th in the whole league among centers.

Gomez in not in Ribeiros league anymore. Ask any non biased fan(meaning non habs fan) who they would rather and 99% will say Ribeiro.

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Old
10-19-2009, 05:20 PM
  #45
Kirk Muller
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Originally Posted by habfan1968 View Post
Sorry can't have it both ways, if Ribs is on this list so is Gomez.
Ribs is a bad example of saying Gomez should be on the list. Ribs who I despise has been a PPG over the course of the last two years while Gomez is in the .80 PPG in that span. Thats a HUGE point differential and much clearer that Ribeiro deserves to be considered a first liner.

Note: I do consider Gomez a first liner just a very bottom one in the league.

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Old
10-19-2009, 05:44 PM
  #46
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Generally speaking when people refer to a 1st line center they mean an average 1st line center.

Rough guidline for an impact 1st line center:
- Best center on 50% of NHL teams.
- 2nd best center on 90% of NHL teams. (i.e. Better than Brad Richards.)
- Comparable to 3rd best offensive forward on any NHL team. (i.e. Same realm though not necessarily as good as Backstrom/Semin/Toews.)
- Can be counted on to provide offense nearly every game.
- Can carry a line. (i.e. Provide offensive output regardless of teammates.)

Teams with impact wingers don't need necessarily need impact centers (Calgary, Atlanta, Devils, Buffalo)

Roughly speaking there are 40 impact forwards (20 centers, 20 wingers).

Montreal doesn't have a top 40 forward or one that will be one any time soon, which is why fans aren't enamoured with Montreal's crop of forwards. Montreal only has what I would call complementary 1st line forwards which isn't exactly a recipe for success.

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Old
10-19-2009, 07:21 PM
  #47
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Well don't just look at how many points the 1st line center makes.. look at his wingers too.. if Gomez was playing with Ovechkin and Kovalchuck, then he'll suddenly become elite center with 100 points (unless the two Russians don't pass him the puck )

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Old
10-19-2009, 08:49 PM
  #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hogtownhabsfan View Post
1st line centers? 30. It's simple.

If you are talking about stud centerman, there are probably less than 10.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey View Post
I hate the 30 teams = 30 first line centers rule


Just because there's 30 teams doesn't mean there's 30 #1 goalies in the league
Agreed with Joey. In a way I get the logic of the argument, but I don't get why it ends the discussion for some people. "First line centre" as a league-wide term has to be interpreted a little more loosely; I don't have any exact definition to offer, but I would generally say that it has to be a player that most organizations would have no problems employing in the first line centre position. The obvious example of Malkin kind of washes out the "guy on the first line is the first liner" argument.

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Old
10-19-2009, 09:50 PM
  #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey View Post
I hate the 30 teams = 30 first line centers rule


Just because there's 30 teams doesn't mean there's 30 #1 goalies in the league
Thank you! The mere fact we have to sooth our minds with this 30 30 crap about Gomez says that conceptually Gomez does not fit into the schema of what is generally believed to be a 1st line center.

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Old
10-19-2009, 10:02 PM
  #50
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Playing on the first line doesn't make you a first liner. Sure, in literal definitions it does, but that's not the question being asked. Were Valeri Bure and Oleg Petrov first liners? No, they should have been 3rd liners for Christ's sake, yet they still played on the first line.
Plekanec/Gomez are not first line centers, it doesn't matter if they're on the Habs' first line or not.

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