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Top 100 American Players of All-Time?

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Old
09-15-2010, 10:53 PM
  #76
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Originally Posted by Dennis Bonvie View Post
You can look at numbers.

I'll go by what I saw of the players on the ice.
I can guarantee I saw more of Langway and Howe than anyone here. Long before the NHL Network or Center Ice packages, I saw every game Howe played as a Flyer and living in Patrick Division territory plenty of Langway as well.

Give me the guy that excelled at both ends of the ice as opposed to guy at just one.

One way I love to judge players is do they play in all five situations (not many do).

Even strength
Power play
Penalty kill
One minute to go, trailing by a goal
One minute to go, leading by a goal

Langway isn't seeing the ice in two of those situations.

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09-15-2010, 11:45 PM
  #77
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...yet, when I say that no one would have traded Yzerman or Gretzky for Lafontaine, I am correct.



I'm not sure what you want from me.... an apology for not being old enough to have watched every playoff game in 1979 and knowing the nuances of Montreal's midseason roster shuffling and waiver transactions?
Yeah but thats the flaw in your argument. No one is suggesting if we would trade lafontaine for those guys, the argument is whether lafontaine was better in 1993 and he was. 3rd in hart voting and 2nd team center backs up that claim.

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09-16-2010, 12:15 AM
  #78
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Yeah but thats the flaw in your argument. No one is suggesting if we would trade lafontaine for those guys, the argument is whether lafontaine was better in 1993 and he was. 3rd in hart voting and 2nd team center backs up that claim.
Playoff results disagree. Roy, Gilmour, Gretzky and Lemieux were all better that year. There's more to hockey than the regular season.

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Old
09-16-2010, 12:18 AM
  #79
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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Playoff results disagree. Roy, Gilmour, Gretzky and Lemieux were all better that year. There's more to hockey than the regular season.
Roy had a mediocre regular season, gretzky missed 39 games. By that logic joe nieuwendyk would be top 5 in 1999.

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09-16-2010, 12:43 AM
  #80
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Roy had a mediocre regular season, gretzky missed 39 games. By that logic joe nieuwendyk would be top 5 in 1999.
No, not really. I don't even think Nieuwendyk was among the top-3 players in the 1999 playoffs and he was a mere 28-goal scorer in the regular season.

Roy was still 8th in sv%, and Gretzky's per-game average would have made him 8th in points despite playing hurt.

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09-16-2010, 03:31 AM
  #81
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No, not really. I don't even think Nieuwendyk was among the top-3 players in the 1999 playoffs and he was a mere 28-goal scorer in the regular season.

Roy was still 8th in sv%, and Gretzky's per-game average would have made him 8th in points despite playing hurt.
Yeah but why would you give credit for games missed? Belfour and Cujo were the best goalies in 1993, roy simply wasnt as good in the regular season. That would be like dismissing kipper in 2006 because cam ward won the conn smythe.

Back on topic though, I would say Lafontaine was probably the only american born forward in modern era that had seasons where he was considered top 5 forward. Guys like modano, roenick, tkachuk and joe mullen were behind the bure's, selanne's and kariya's in terms of peak value.

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09-16-2010, 06:02 AM
  #82
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Originally Posted by ushvinder View Post
Back on topic though, I would say Lafontaine was probably the only american born forward in modern era that had seasons where he was considered top 5 forward. Guys like modano, roenick, tkachuk and joe mullen were behind the bure's, selanne's and kariya's in terms of peak value.
I think you can make a case for Parise in 08/09 being a top-5 forward.

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09-16-2010, 06:10 AM
  #83
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How many american goalies have ever won the Vezina?
Cause this would be a good reason to rate Tim Thomas somewhere in the top50

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09-16-2010, 06:16 AM
  #84
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I guess brian propp is better than marcel dionne. Gretzky missed 39 games in the regular season, he was useless for the games he missed.
You're missing the distinction between 'who had the best season' in a given year and who is the best player.

Henrik Sedin had the best season of any NHL player last year, but no-one (I don't think) thinks he's a better player than Crosby or Ovechkin.

Due to injuries and off-seasons, Lafontaine might have had the 3rd-best season of anyone in the NHL in 1992-93, but he sure as hell wasn't considered the 2nd or 3rd-best player.

If you could choose one player to have for one game in 1993, he'd be somewhere in the 6-10 range, probably closer to 10.

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09-16-2010, 12:52 PM
  #85
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I guess brian propp is better than marcel dionne. Gretzky missed 39 games in the regular season, he was useless for the games he missed.
you're using propp vs. dionne to justify gretzky vs. lafontaine? think about that for a moment.

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Yeah but why would you give credit for games missed? Belfour and Cujo were the best goalies in 1993, roy simply wasnt as good in the regular season. That would be like dismissing kipper in 2006 because cam ward won the conn smythe.
by the same token, why would you give credit for playoff games not played?

the difference between your examples is that gretzky had one of the great playoff runs of all time. his run wasn't a nieuwendyk run or a cam ward run, this was gretzky playing some of the best hockey i've ever seen in my life, and on a pretty unstacked kings team no less. similarly, roy had the best playoff run i have ever seen by a goalie (my hockey watching dates back to gretzky's last cup). i think that trumps a relatively pedestrian vezina (by his or anyone else's standards) from belfour.

cam ward's playoffs don't add up to kipper's regular season in '06. to me, there is a very good case that gretzky's amazing playoffs exceed lafontaine's amazing regular season, and certainly roy's playoffs over belfour's regular season.

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How many american goalies have ever won the Vezina?
Cause this would be a good reason to rate Tim Thomas somewhere in the top50
off the top of my head, barrasso, vanbiesbrouck, carey, and miller are all american guys with vezinas. which raises the question: is thomas even ahead of carey?

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09-16-2010, 01:11 PM
  #86
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Oh please. Nobody ever thought Lafontaine was a top-2 player in the world. Not even when he was the #2 scorer. Top-2 in terms of most dazzling and exciting, perhaps. But never top-2 overall, especially when defensemen and goalies are considered.

Who are all these "many people"? Certainly not the hockey writers. they had Lafontaine considerably below Gilmour as the 1993 Hart runner-up even though he had 21 more points. And they actually only voted him a top-5 center three times in his career. Yes, that was always behind Gretzky, Lemieux, Messier, and Yzerman, (and once, Roenick) but that still doesn't indicate in any way that he was considered a top-2 player.



On what grounds? Langway was an absolute stud defensively but he didn't help his team score goals - not much, anyway.

Langway improved his teams' goal differential from an average of 1.20 to 1.29 when he was on the ice. Howe improved his team from 0.96 to 1.49.

Think about what that means. I mean really stop and think about it. Langway's teams were considerably better than Howe's teams when neither was on the ice, but when they were both on the ice, Howe's teams were considerably better than Langway's.



And who are these people? I find the members of the HOH board to be the people who are truly "in the know".



Actually, the Hart and Norris voting records (and Howe's immense impact on his team's on-ice results) do make a pretty good case for both, though I'm not sure there's room. But Howe should definitely be ahead.
Actually, there was discussion in Lafontaine's first two years in Buffalo whether he was No. 2 behind Mario. In the 1992-93 THN Yearbook, there was a story on whether Lafontaine was the second-best player in the game. (The only thing that stopped him after he arrived in Buffalo was a dirty high stick by Jamie Macoun). And in the 1993-94 Yearbook, in THN's inaugural player ranking list (it was a top 25 list that year), I believe Lafontaine was ranked No. 2.

Gilmour finished ahead of Lafontaine in Hart voting in 1992-93, and for good reason. He meant more to his team's success than Lafontaine. For the first time in several years, Lafontaine had a supporting cast in Buffalo. Until Andreychuk arrived, Gilmour didn't have much of a supporting cast. Lafontaine was the second-team all-star that year. Gilmour deserved to be ahead of Lafontaine in Hart voting. Lafontaine deserved to be ahead of Gilmour in all-star team and best player voting.

On those in the know and Howe in the HHOF: Last year I had lunch with a member of the HHOF, as well as a friend who played in The Show. The topic of the best not in the HHOF quickly came up. I suggested Howe. That one was quickly shot down. They thought he was great. But not an HHOF-calibre player. I disagree with them, but I think it shows that maybe Howe isn't as highly regarded by some as we think he should be. But people in the game's higher levels don't pay nearly as much attention to numbers as some fans do. They care about how you played the game. They have some use for stats - goals, assists, points, PIMs, ice time wins, to a lesser extent plus/minus, power play goals, short-handed goals and game-winning goals. But not about formulas. Except for finances, goals against average, save percentage and a lesser extent shooting percentage, they don't have much use for calculators. Agents? They look first and foremost at stats when it's something they can use in negotiations. Arbitrators usually only look at stats, but most of them don't know the first thing about hockey. (And a few years ago, the NHLPA actually blocked an arbitrator who was a fan, because they knew that stats-based wouldn't fly in those hearings).

When I want to talk hockey, the conversations I enjoy the most are still with those who make a living in the sport. Those are the people who are truly "in the know." Granted, there are hacks writing for papers and announcing games in Florida, Carolina and Arizona who don't know the first thing about hockey, and can only make evaluations based on stats. Most of us knew re about hockey when I was 10 than some beat writers will ever know. But talk to coaches and executives who make their living at the game (start at the Junior A level), those who played or officiated the game at a very high level, or those who cover the game at a high level in markets where readers understand the game. Those are the ones who are in the know.


Last edited by God Bless Canada: 09-16-2010 at 01:30 PM.
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Old
09-16-2010, 01:26 PM
  #87
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Originally Posted by God Bless Canada View Post

On those in the know and Howe in the HHOF: Last year I had lunch with a member of the HHOF, as well as a friend who played in The Show. The topic of the best not in the HHOF quickly came up. I suggested Howe. That one was quickly shot down. They thought he was great. But not an HHOF-calibre player. I disagree with them, but I think it shows that maybe Howe isn't as highly regarded by some as we think he should be. But people in the game's higher levels don't pay nearly as much attention to numbers as some fans do. They care about how you played the game. Not about formulas. Leave the numbers to arbitrators and agents.
Interesting. Obviously, not everyone feels the same way, as Doc Emrick (a member of the HHOF committee) and Chico Resch (who played in The Show) agreed that Howe is the one player not in the HHOF who should be.

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Old
09-16-2010, 01:32 PM
  #88
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off the top of my head, barrasso, vanbiesbrouck, carey, and miller are all american guys with vezinas. which raises the question: is thomas even ahead of carey?
Interesting thought...Thomas is definitely more likeable, and you kinda cheer for him as the underdog, but pretty similar career to Jim Carey at this point. I guess for that reason, and the fact that he's at least stuck around in the league for more than three seasons would put Thomas ahead in my books. I'd say they were the two weakest Vezina years I can recall though.

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09-16-2010, 02:53 PM
  #89
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Interesting thought...Thomas is definitely more likeable, and you kinda cheer for him as the underdog, but pretty similar career to Jim Carey at this point. I guess for that reason, and the fact that he's at least stuck around in the league for more than three seasons would put Thomas ahead in my books. I'd say they were the two weakest Vezina years I can recall though.
The bolded statement makes no sense to me since Carey was out of hockey at age 24, while at that stage Tim Thomas was splitting time between the AHL and Finland. Other than the Vezina Trophy and both being American goalies who played for the Bruins, I can't think of anything at all similar about the two of their careers.

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09-16-2010, 03:46 PM
  #90
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Interesting thought...Thomas is definitely more likeable, and you kinda cheer for him as the underdog, but pretty similar career to Jim Carey at this point. I guess for that reason, and the fact that he's at least stuck around in the league for more than three seasons would put Thomas ahead in my books. I'd say they were the two weakest Vezina years I can recall though.
Just remembering those two seasons, Thomas definitely was the better of the two goalies. Carey's numbers were exceptionally weak for a Vezina winner and when looked at in contrast to his peers that season it's a wonder that he even won it. Hasek probably had the best year but with as poorly as Buffalo as a whole did there was no way he was winning it. Here's the goalies that were legit candidates that season:

Jim Carey: 71GP, 35W, 2.26GAA, .906%, 9SO (5-7-6 voting)
Chris Osgood: 50GP, 39W, 2.17GAA, .911%, 5SO (5-6-3 voting)
Daren Puppa: 57GP, 29W, 2.46GAA, .918%, 5SO (4-3-5 voting)
Martin Brodeur: 77GP, 34W, 2.34GAA, .911%, 6SO (4-3-2 voting)
Ron Hextall: 53GP, 31W, 2.17GAA, .913%, 4SO (2-3-4 voting)

personally I would have said either Osgood or Puppa, neither of whom would have been a particularly strong Vezina winner in their own right but (IMO) certainly more respectable. Not even sure I would have given Carey a 3rd place vote to be honest.

In Thomas's year, here were those who were regarded as his main competition for the Vezina:

Tim Thomas: 54GP, 36W, 2.10GAA, .933%, 5SO (103-20-5 voting)
Steve Mason: 61GP, 33W, 2.29GAA, .916%, 10SO (22-60-23 voting)
Roberto Luongo: 54GP, 33W, 2.34GAA, .920%, 9SO (2-14-30 voting)
Niklas Backstrom: 71GP, 37W, 2.33GAA, .923%, 8SO (0-14-18 voting)
Evgeni Nabokov: 62GP, 41W, 2.44GAA, .910%, 7SO (1-9-18 voting)
Miikka Kiprusoff: 76GP, 45W, 2.84GAA, .903%, 4SO (1-5-9 voting)
Cam Ward: 68GP, 39W, 2.44GAA, .916%, 6SO (0-4-14 voting)

other then some questionable picks on who places where in that voting, that was a clear landslide for Thomas. A much stronger year then the one where Carey won on the whole, and Thomas still outright ran away with it.

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Old
09-16-2010, 04:16 PM
  #91
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You're missing the distinction between 'who had the best season' in a given year and who is the best player.
Thank you. These would have been my words exactly.

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Originally Posted by God Bless Canada View Post
Actually, there was discussion in Lafontaine's first two years in Buffalo whether he was No. 2 behind Mario. In the 1992-93 THN Yearbook, there was a story on whether Lafontaine was the second-best player in the game. (The only thing that stopped him after he arrived in Buffalo was a dirty high stick by Jamie Macoun). And in the 1993-94 Yearbook, in THN's inaugural player ranking list (it was a top 25 list that year), I believe Lafontaine was ranked No. 2.
Another case of THN being much too quick to place a player so high on the list, or rather, being too quick to drop a player who had one off-year. Guys like Gretzky, Roy, Chelios and Bourque should have definitely been ahead. Following 1992-93, maybe Gilmour too.

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Gilmour finished ahead of Lafontaine in Hart voting in 1992-93, and for good reason. He meant more to his team's success than Lafontaine. For the first time in several years, Lafontaine had a supporting cast in Buffalo. Until Andreychuk arrived, Gilmour didn't have much of a supporting cast. Lafontaine was the second-team all-star that year. Gilmour deserved to be ahead of Lafontaine in Hart voting. Lafontaine deserved to be ahead of Gilmour in all-star team and best player voting.
Are you sure? You just said yourself that Lafontaine had a supporting cast and Gilmour didn't (until Andreychuk arrived). Lafontaine outscored Gilmour by just 16% and Gilmour was immensely better without the puck. It wouldn't have been wrong to see Gilmour get that 2nd all-star team spot too.

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They care about how you played the game. They have some use for stats - goals, assists, points, PIMs, ice time wins, to a lesser extent plus/minus, power play goals, short-handed goals and game-winning goals. But not about formulas. Except for finances, goals against average, save percentage and a lesser extent shooting percentage, they don't have much use for calculators.
Doesn't really matter how Howe "played the game". His impact was incredible. Numbers don't validate that; they are a symptom of how good he was.

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Interesting thought...Thomas is definitely more likeable, and you kinda cheer for him as the underdog, but pretty similar career to Jim Carey at this point. I guess for that reason, and the fact that he's at least stuck around in the league for more than three seasons would put Thomas ahead in my books. I'd say they were the two weakest Vezina years I can recall though.
Thomas is absoutely miles ahead of Carey for career value already. His Vezina win was much, much stronger, his non-Vezina years have been good as opposed to brutal, and his career value is certainly better too, considering his non-NHL years were spent as a great goalie in Europe, not a great nothing nowhere.

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09-16-2010, 04:19 PM
  #92
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Just remembering those two seasons, Thomas definitely was the better of the two goalies. Carey's numbers were exceptionally weak for a Vezina winner and when looked at in contrast to his peers that season it's a wonder that he even won it. Hasek probably had the best year but with as poorly as Buffalo as a whole did there was no way he was winning it. Here's the goalies that were legit candidates that season:

Jim Carey: 71GP, 35W, 2.26GAA, .906%, 9SO (5-7-6 voting)
Chris Osgood: 50GP, 39W, 2.17GAA, .911%, 5SO (5-6-3 voting)
Daren Puppa: 57GP, 29W, 2.46GAA, .918%, 5SO (4-3-5 voting)
Martin Brodeur: 77GP, 34W, 2.34GAA, .911%, 6SO (4-3-2 voting)
Ron Hextall: 53GP, 31W, 2.17GAA, .913%, 4SO (2-3-4 voting)

personally I would have said either Osgood or Puppa, neither of whom would have been a particularly strong Vezina winner in their own right but (IMO) certainly more respectable. Not even sure I would have given Carey a 3rd place vote to be honest.

In Thomas's year, here were those who were regarded as his main competition for the Vezina:

Tim Thomas: 54GP, 36W, 2.10GAA, .933%, 5SO (103-20-5 voting)
Steve Mason: 61GP, 33W, 2.29GAA, .916%, 10SO (22-60-23 voting)
Roberto Luongo: 54GP, 33W, 2.34GAA, .920%, 9SO (2-14-30 voting)
Niklas Backstrom: 71GP, 37W, 2.33GAA, .923%, 8SO (0-14-18 voting)
Evgeni Nabokov: 62GP, 41W, 2.44GAA, .910%, 7SO (1-9-18 voting)
Miikka Kiprusoff: 76GP, 45W, 2.84GAA, .903%, 4SO (1-5-9 voting)
Cam Ward: 68GP, 39W, 2.44GAA, .916%, 6SO (0-4-14 voting)

other then some questionable picks on who places where in that voting, that was a clear landslide for Thomas. A much stronger year then the one where Carey won on the whole, and Thomas still outright ran away with it.
Definitely a stronger Vezina season. He was also solid in the playoffs that year, whereas Carey was horrible, and he's been better in other seasons as well.

I'd still put Thomas behind Brimsek, Barrasso, Vanbiesbrouck, Richter, Miller, Hebert and Casey

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09-16-2010, 05:40 PM
  #93
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The bolded statement makes no sense to me since Carey was out of hockey at age 24, while at that stage Tim Thomas was splitting time between the AHL and Finland. Other than the Vezina Trophy and both being American goalies who played for the Bruins, I can't think of anything at all similar about the two of their careers.
Erm, 3 years as starting goalies apiece, and what is essentially a flukey Vezina win for each. I figured those were the important similarities.

But you're right, they are different ages, have different colour hair, and I've heard Thomas is a Colgate man while Carey preferres Crest.

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09-16-2010, 10:33 PM
  #94
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Definitely a stronger Vezina season. He was also solid in the playoffs that year, whereas Carey was horrible, and he's been better in other seasons as well.

I'd still put Thomas behind Brimsek, Barrasso, Vanbiesbrouck, Richter, Miller, Hebert and Casey
Both Carey and Thomas had a massive spike/peak in their careers. Outside of that spike Thomas certainly looks better. I'm not sure where to rank Carey amongst American netminders. Not only does his Vezina seem like a fluke, his making the NHL almost seems like an anomaly. He only had two seasons as a starter, and only one of them was any good. But he deserves some kind of credit for winning a Vezina.

Fortunately for him, America isn't Quebec, so the competition amongst all time great goalies isn't fierce.

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09-16-2010, 11:12 PM
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Definitely a stronger Vezina season. He was also solid in the playoffs that year, whereas Carey was horrible, and he's been better in other seasons as well.

I'd still put Thomas behind Brimsek, Barrasso, Vanbiesbrouck, Richter, Miller, Hebert and Casey
A point can be made that he's in Hebert, Casey's territory. For whatever reason, I'd have him ahead of Mike Karakas, but Karakas is a goalie that is really hard to rank, due to the fact that he spent his best years on bad team, then on a very bad team, then on a veeeery bad team.

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09-16-2010, 11:47 PM
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Mike Karakas

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A point can be made that he's in Hebert, Casey's territory. For whatever reason, I'd have him ahead of Mike Karakas, but Karakas is a goalie that is really hard to rank, due to the fact that he spent his best years on bad team, then on a very bad team, then on a veeeery bad team.
Did manage to win the 1938 Stanley Cup on a losing Blackhawk team that got hot.

http://www.hockey-reference.com/play...karakmi01.html

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09-17-2010, 01:33 AM
  #97
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you're using propp vs. dionne to justify gretzky vs. lafontaine? think about that for a moment.



by the same token, why would you give credit for playoff games not played?

the difference between your examples is that gretzky had one of the great playoff runs of all time. his run wasn't a nieuwendyk run or a cam ward run, this was gretzky playing some of the best hockey i've ever seen in my life, and on a pretty unstacked kings team no less. similarly, roy had the best playoff run i have ever seen by a goalie (my hockey watching dates back to gretzky's last cup). i think that trumps a relatively pedestrian vezina (by his or anyone else's standards) from belfour.

cam ward's playoffs don't add up to kipper's regular season in '06. to me, there is a very good case that gretzky's amazing playoffs exceed lafontaine's amazing regular season, and certainly roy's playoffs over belfour's regular season.



off the top of my head, barrasso, vanbiesbrouck, carey, and miller are all american guys with vezinas. which raises the question: is thomas even ahead of carey?
In 1993 Belfour ranked 1st in shutouts, 2nd in wins, 3rd in save% and 2nd in gaa and you call that a 'pedestrian season'? His 1993 season was probably better than all of fedorov's seasons except his hart year. So if you consider belfour's 1993 season as simply pedestrian, then all of fedorov's off years would be straight up horrible. Also, a playoff series is only 1/4th the length of a regular season so its easier to appear dominant.

God bless canada just showed how the hockey news themselves had lafontaine ranked very highly in thier yearbooks.

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09-17-2010, 01:44 AM
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TheStranger
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Not sure how nobody includes Amonte in the top 20. 11th in points and 6th in goals?

Not sure what criteria everyone is going by, I guess some of you would know the players better than me, but seems hard to be put behind AT LEAST 9 players you scored more points than, and 14 players you scored more goals than.

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09-17-2010, 02:03 AM
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Just a few points to agree with from earlier posts:
-Chelios has to be number 1. He hit a fantastic peak and combined that with a very solid longevity. No way he isn't number 1.
-Mark Howe has to be highly regarded. I personally hold it against him that he didn't join the NHL right off the bat but I understand his reasoning. It is what it is at this point and he impacted that Flyers team in a big way.
- Lafontaine is probably the most talented American player ever. Sure he did little defensively and he was the opposite of physical, but he gave that Sabre's team an identity and he was nothing short of brilliant for a handful of years. He can't be ranked number 1 because of the concussions, but he was certainly the most talented American player ever.
-Roenick deserves more credit. He was the centerpiece of quite a few offenses and he had a great combo of grit and skill.
- Lastly, Modano cannot be high on my list. He had all of the tools and yet he never really capitalized on them to the extent that I thought he should. I know he peaked in the dead puck era, but watching him play consistently, I just didn't think he carried that Stars team very often when he could have.

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09-17-2010, 05:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MXD View Post
A point can be made that he's in Hebert, Casey's territory. For whatever reason, I'd have him ahead of Mike Karakas, but Karakas is a goalie that is really hard to rank, due to the fact that he spent his best years on bad team, then on a very bad team, then on a veeeery bad team.
Hebert and Casey certainly never had a Vezina caliber season like Thomas, and I thought about that, but they had a few seasons where they received a little Vezina support, however meaningful that is, and in general I just think their established level of play was higher. Also, Carey managed to take a mediocre Minnesota team to the cup final. I forgot about Karakas though, and I'm not too sure where to rank him either

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