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Rank them: Mikita, Trottier, Clarke, Messier, Sakic, Yzerman, Schmidt

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Old
08-24-2010, 01:45 PM
  #26
JackSlater
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Based mainly on prime performance

Mikita
Clarke
Trottier
Yzerman
Sakic
Messier
Schmidt

I find Yzerman difficult to place as he wasn't really a two way centre during what I consider to be his best years.

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08-24-2010, 02:12 PM
  #27
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Originally Posted by JackSlater View Post
Based mainly on prime performance

Mikita
Clarke
Trottier
Yzerman
Sakic
Messier
Schmidt

I find Yzerman difficult to place as he wasn't really a two way centre during what I consider to be his best years.
Then why does he rank above Sakic who was a two way centre during what most consider to be his best years? In 2001 Sakic had a 24 point lead over anyone not named Jagr, who was under a point per game before Lemieux returned that year. He also was runner up for the Selke that very same year. Very impressive. Not to mention he lead the playoffs in points while providing solid defense on the way to his team winning another cup.

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08-24-2010, 02:12 PM
  #28
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IMO, playing on the same team as Gretzky held back Messier's regular season numbers a little bit. Overpass showed that Messier didn't get much PP time until a year or two before Gretzky left.

It's also no coincidence that as soon as he was separated from Gretzky, Messier immediately became a threat to win the Hart trophy, winning it in 1990, 1992, and runner up in 1996.
not saying mess wasn't a great offensive player and very successful even without gretzky - but i think soemtimes people forget how much gretzky was better than everyone else. that gap was enormous and something the game will probably never see.

from 80-81 to 86-87 gretzky outscored messier by 101,124,90,104,154 (mess played just 55 games),131,75.

he outscored not just messier but this vast amount - but the whole league. Outside the oilers players (who were riding the gretzky wave) in those same years gretz outscored the next highest non-oiler by:
65 (bossy)
72 (stastny)
84 (goulet)
78 (hawerchuk)
64 (mario)
76 (mario)

the numbers are far too staggering to ignore, especially when it comes to the statistical impact on other oilers players.

don't want to take anything away from messier. As you said, he went on to have an incredible career even without 99, but gretzky didn't "benefit" from the 80s high-scoring era - he CREATED IT.

way off topic now, apologies!

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Old
08-24-2010, 02:47 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by redbull View Post
not saying mess wasn't a great offensive player and very successful even without gretzky - but i think soemtimes people forget how much gretzky was better than everyone else. that gap was enormous and something the game will probably never see.

from 80-81 to 86-87 gretzky outscored messier by 101,124,90,104,154 (mess played just 55 games),131,75.

he outscored not just messier but this vast amount - but the whole league. Outside the oilers players (who were riding the gretzky wave) in those same years gretz outscored the next highest non-oiler by:
65 (bossy)
72 (stastny)
84 (goulet)
78 (hawerchuk)
64 (mario)
76 (mario)

the numbers are far too staggering to ignore, especially when it comes to the statistical impact on other oilers players.

don't want to take anything away from messier. As you said, he went on to have an incredible career even without 99, but gretzky didn't "benefit" from the 80s high-scoring era - he CREATED IT.

way off topic now, apologies!
Don't mean to intrude but your probably not telling him anything he doesn't already know.

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08-24-2010, 02:55 PM
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan87 View Post
Mikita
Clarke
Trottier
Sakic
Yzerman
Messier
Schmidt
I agree with list, the only problem for me is where to put Messier. I am not sure he should be higher than Sakic and Yzerman or below them. I am fine either way though as I didn't think that he that great defensively in my mind but then did teams every score against him.

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08-24-2010, 03:08 PM
  #31
Big Phil
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When I first saw the thread title I wondered where Esposito was. Then I read the first post. I get it. Yeah he wasn't a two-way center like the other ones but I will say this, outside of Mikita I rank Esposito as the better player than the rest of them. But if we are looking at strictly two-way centers.........

Mikita
Messier
Sakic
Trottier
Clarke
Schmidt
Yzerman

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08-24-2010, 03:19 PM
  #32
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Originally Posted by Dark Shadows View Post
Because some players are so good defensively while being comparable offensively that they deserve the extra points.
Oh of course. Just it seems a lot of instances someone will say a certain player is a better 2-way player than another one, when that players defensive edge isn't as great as the other ones offensive edge. For instance, a lot of people believe Mike Richards and Ryan Kesler are better 2-way players than Crosby. Or Toews is a better two-way player than Backstrom. I say nope, they're better defensively, but are not better 2-way players at all.

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08-24-2010, 03:23 PM
  #33
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Originally Posted by redbull View Post
not saying mess wasn't a great offensive player and very successful even without gretzky - but i think soemtimes people forget how much gretzky was better than everyone else. that gap was enormous and something the game will probably never see.

from 80-81 to 86-87 gretzky outscored messier by 101,124,90,104,154 (mess played just 55 games),131,75.

he outscored not just messier but this vast amount - but the whole league. Outside the oilers players (who were riding the gretzky wave) in those same years gretz outscored the next highest non-oiler by:
65 (bossy)
72 (stastny)
84 (goulet)
78 (hawerchuk)
64 (mario)
76 (mario)

the numbers are far too staggering to ignore, especially when it comes to the statistical impact on other oilers players.

don't want to take anything away from messier. As you said, he went on to have an incredible career even without 99, but gretzky didn't "benefit" from the 80s high-scoring era - he CREATED IT.

way off topic now, apologies!
I understand how ridiculous Gretzky's scoring was. But how much did it really help Messier from a statistical standpoint? Messier wasn't Gretzky's linemate - he was the #2 center. Gretzky had a negative effect on Messier's ice time, especially on the PP and in offensive situations at even strength, for much of the time they played together. Gretzky got most of the offensive zone draws; Messier got a large portion of the defensive draws.

Edit: And it's obviously not surprising that Messier got nil Hart consideration until after Gretzky was traded.

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08-24-2010, 03:51 PM
  #34
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
I understand how ridiculous Gretzky's scoring was. But how much did it really help Messier from a statistical standpoint? Messier wasn't Gretzky's linemate - he was the #2 center. Gretzky had a negative effect on Messier's ice time, especially on the PP and in offensive situations at even strength, for much of the time they played together. Gretzky got most of the offensive zone draws; Messier got a large portion of the defensive draws.

Edit: And it's obviously not surprising that Messier got nil Hart consideration until after Gretzky was traded.
I see your point, and it's a valid one. Messier often trailed Kurri, Coffey and sometimes Anderson in scoring - mainly due to the point you bring up.

that said, even as a secondary PP player and/or the odd shift against the other teams worst checkers, the benefits of playing on that team kinda offset your point.

what a nice problem to have. You limit Messier's PP time because you have 5 better options...crazy!

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08-24-2010, 04:03 PM
  #35
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I never saw Schmidt and only saw Mikita in the latter portion of his career, so any opinion in that regard I offered would be limited. Likewise, my "name" on this board would suggest overt bias. So I'll pass with submitting a list.

I will however, simply offer this observation, among those I did see through the entirety of their careers: I think Mark Messier is being sold short by some here. Big time.

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08-24-2010, 04:03 PM
  #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
I understand how ridiculous Gretzky's scoring was. But how much did it really help Messier from a statistical standpoint? Messier wasn't Gretzky's linemate - he was the #2 center. Gretzky had a negative effect on Messier's ice time, especially on the PP and in offensive situations at even strength, for much of the time they played together. Gretzky got most of the offensive zone draws; Messier got a large portion of the defensive draws.

Edit: And it's obviously not surprising that Messier got nil Hart consideration until after Gretzky was traded.
Messier actually improved his numbers after Gretzky left when he took over the team. The first year without Gretzky he injured his knee midway through the season and was suspended 6 games for that high stick on Sutter, but the next year he took that Oilers team by the scruff of the neck and had his most dominant year ever.

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08-24-2010, 04:07 PM
  #37
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Originally Posted by Dark Shadows View Post
Messier actually improved his numbers after Gretzky left when he took over the team. The first year without Gretzky he injured his knee midway through the season and was suspended 6 games for that high stick on Sutter, but the next year he took that Oilers team by the scruff of the neck and had his most dominant year ever.
Oh, you don't have to tell me about Messier. I was one of the people shocked that he wasn't even an option for the Top 20 on the the last Top 100 list.

Has there ever been a player who did more to tarnish his legacy than Messier did after 1997?

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08-24-2010, 04:08 PM
  #38
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Trottier #1, he is the best center of all times.
Mikita, Clarke, Sakic tied for #2
Yzerman, Schmidt next
..
..
..
At bottom, the gutless puke who stole Linden's captaincy.

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08-24-2010, 04:23 PM
  #39
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Then why does he rank above Sakic who was a two way centre during what most consider to be his best years? In 2001 Sakic had a 24 point lead over anyone not named Jagr, who was under a point per game before Lemieux returned that year. He also was runner up for the Selke that very same year. Very impressive. Not to mention he lead the playoffs in points while providing solid defense on the way to his team winning another cup.
Well, it wasn't me who put him ahead, but while I think that year jumps out as being better than any of Yzerman's, it wasn't like Sakic was consistently putting up those seasons. I actually think Sakic's offense gets overrated a bit. He was great, for sure, but he was also a bit up and down in his seasons. When comparing him to Yzerman I've seen a lot of people pick and choose Sakic's seasons from throughout his career, and yet it's always against Yzerman's 6 year stretch (actually 7 if we include him prior to injury in 93-94). Sakic could be one of the best offensive players in the league, but Yzerman was consistently one of the best for his peak stretch, and probably the best outside of Mario and Gretzky.

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08-24-2010, 04:26 PM
  #40
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1. Mikita
2. Clarke
3. Trottier
4. Sakic
5. Messier
6. Yzerman
7. Schmidt

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08-24-2010, 04:30 PM
  #41
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Well, it wasn't me who put him ahead, but while I think that year jumps out as being better than any of Yzerman's, it wasn't like Sakic was consistently putting up those seasons. I actually think Sakic's offense gets overrated a bit. He was great, for sure, but he was also a bit up and down in his seasons. When comparing him to Yzerman I've seen a lot of people pick and choose Sakic's seasons from throughout his career, and yet it's always against Yzerman's 6 year stretch (actually 7 if we include him prior to injury in 93-94). Sakic could be one of the best offensive players in the league, but Yzerman was consistently one of the best for his peak stretch, and probably the best outside of Mario and Gretzky.
But in the context of this question it is different.
Yzerman was not good defensively when he was putting up those large offensive seasons. Yzerman sacrificed offense to play better defense later in his career, whereas Sakic was always an excellent non-flashy two way forward.

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08-24-2010, 04:32 PM
  #42
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Well, it wasn't me who put him ahead, but while I think that year jumps out as being better than any of Yzerman's, it wasn't like Sakic was consistently putting up those seasons. I actually think Sakic's offense gets overrated a bit. He was great, for sure, but he was also a bit up and down in his seasons. When comparing him to Yzerman I've seen a lot of people pick and choose Sakic's seasons from throughout his career, and yet it's always against Yzerman's 6 year stretch (actually 7 if we include him prior to injury in 93-94). Sakic could be one of the best offensive players in the league, but Yzerman was consistently one of the best for his peak stretch, and probably the best outside of Mario and Gretzky.
The main reason I pick Sakic is because he played very good defense when he was putting up big numbers. Yzerman was not a good defensive player at all when he was putting up his even better numbers. By the time Yzerman because very good defensively himself (probably even better than Sakic), his offense was pretty pedestrian.

And as "clutch" as Yzerman was in the 2nd half of his career, Sakic was even more "clutch."

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08-24-2010, 04:54 PM
  #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
Oh, you don't have to tell me about Messier. I was one of the people shocked that he wasn't even an option for the Top 20 on the the last Top 100 list.

Has there ever been a player who did more to tarnish his legacy than Messier did after 1997?
Maybe Brett Favre

I basicly agree that Messier is sold short and I am the first to admit that I am biased when it comes to Messier. I just can't stand that guy and all this raving about his great leadship and the guarantee. He gets too bad of a rep here mostly because of these factors I think. The name Messier has been shoved down people's throats for a looooong time. Quite a bit like Favre actually.

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08-24-2010, 04:55 PM
  #44
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Oh, you don't have to tell me about Messier. I was one of the people shocked that he wasn't even an option for the Top 20 on the the last Top 100 list.

Has there ever been a player who did more to tarnish his legacy than Messier did after 1997?
No kidding (and I say this as a Canucks fan who loathes the guy). It's easy to forget that in '96, at the creaky old age of 35, Messier was beating out Sakic, Lindros, and Fedorov in their primes for Hart votes. Just an absolutely dominating player for an absurdly long period of time.

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08-24-2010, 05:04 PM
  #45
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But in the context of this question it is different.
Yzerman was not good defensively when he was putting up those large offensive seasons. Yzerman sacrificed offense to play better defense later in his career, whereas Sakic was always an excellent non-flashy two way forward.
Oh, no question. I was just trying to say that someone putting Yzerman ahead based on his peak must feel that his offense outweighs Sakic's better 2-way game. I don't agree that it does, but I've seen arguments that Sakic was equal to Yzerman offensively during their peaks, which I don't think was the case.

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08-24-2010, 05:09 PM
  #46
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Oh, no question. I was just trying to say that someone putting Yzerman ahead based on his peak must feel that his offense outweighs Sakic's better 2-way game. I don't agree that it does, but I've seen arguments that Sakic was equal to Yzerman offensively during their peaks, which I don't think was the case.
If the numbers tell the truth, and I think they do, no matter how they're spun, then a peak Sakic was as good as a peak Yzerman.

pre-and post-peak Sakic vs. pre- and post-peak Yzerman, well, you know what that comparison will yield.

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08-24-2010, 06:08 PM
  #47
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It seems Mikita is at the top of everyone's list, Yzerman and Sakic flip flop on the bottom. In the middle we have Trottier, Clarke, and Messier. I'm interested in opinions on the order of those 3.

Besides Lemieux and Gretzky, it's difficult for me to contemplate a centre better than Trottier. There have been better players but when you think perfect centre and what you'd want him to be able to do, Trottier could do it.

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08-24-2010, 06:11 PM
  #48
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I think Schmidt is getting short shrift here because he played in a lower scoring era before any of us started watching hockey with a critical eye. The war years eating into his prime didn't help either.

He was a defensive stalwart (even through his scoring prime), he hit like a truck, he has an Art Ross and a Hart, he led the playoffs in scoring, and was a crucial cog in two Cups.

He deserves to be above Sakic and Yzerman. He added a physical element that they never had, and was able to combine elite defense and offense in a way they never could. Proto-Trottier.

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08-24-2010, 06:13 PM
  #49
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I think Schmidt is getting short shrift here because he played in a lower scoring era before any of us started watching hockey with a critical eye. The war years eating into his prime didn't help either.

He was a defensive stalwart (even through his scoring prime), he hit like a truck, he has an Art Ross and a Hart, he led the playoffs in scoring, and was a crucial cog in two Cups.

He deserves to be above Sakic and Yzerman. He added a physical element that they never had, and was able to combine elite defense and offense in a way they never could. Proto-Trottier.

Even taking the war years into account, Schmidt lacks the longevity of Yzerman and Sakic and he lacks the super-clutchness of Sakic. But I apparently rate Sakic higher than most. I also think Sakic is quite a bit better than Schmidt offensively. Schmidt won an Art Ross, but other than that his scoring finishes pale in comparison, even taking the war into account.

I see Schmidt/Yzerman as basically a tossup (prime goes to Schmidt), but I rank both of them a bit behind Sakic.

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08-24-2010, 06:17 PM
  #50
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Originally Posted by TOOMUCHBREWER View Post
It seems Mikita is at the top of everyone's list, Yzerman and Sakic flip flop on the bottom. In the middle we have Trottier, Clarke, and Messier. I'm interested in opinions on the order of those 3.

Besides Lemieux and Gretzky, it's difficult for me to contemplate a centre better than Trottier. There have been better players but when you think perfect centre and what you'd want him to be able to do, Trottier could do it.
Frankly, I rate Messier as closer to Mikita than to the rest. If you needed to win a game in the playoffs, is there a better choice than prime Messier? (other than the obvious Gretzky, Orr, etc guys). Maybe I'm biased by the fact that Messier is the only player who the Lemaire-era Devils trap really couldn't slow down.

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