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Old
11-17-2010, 04:19 PM
  #26
mobilus
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Originally Posted by VMBM View Post
Well, that certainly proves he's no top 25 (or whatever) player!
I didn't post those to prove anything. For anyone who wasn't born yet in 1972, Clarke's actions weren't only considered acceptable by a lot of people, but appreciated. It was okay then to play dirty against the Russians or any team from the Eastern Bloc, because they were the big, bad communists. The politics was an undercurrent to every east/west hockey game. Messier pretty much behaved the same way in the '87 Canada Cup, throwing elbows in the finals whenever he had the chance.

The behaviour was what it was then, and things are different now. There's probably a number of players who would go back to that style if were considered acceptable today.

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11-17-2010, 04:29 PM
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To the OP, hopefully this was your last issue of THN. That magazine is pure garbage.
It was a letter to the editor! Settle down.

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11-17-2010, 04:32 PM
  #28
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Originally Posted by mobilus View Post
I didn't post those to prove anything. For anyone who wasn't born yet in 1972, Clarke's actions weren't only considered acceptable by a lot of people, but appreciated. It was okay then to play dirty against the Russians or any team from the Eastern Bloc, because they were the big, bad communists. The politics was an undercurrent to every east/west hockey game. Messier pretty much behaved the same way in the '87 Canada Cup, throwing elbows in the finals whenever he had the chance.

The behaviour was what it was then, and things are different now. There's probably a number of players who would go back to that style if were considered acceptable today.
The political climate doesn't make it ok just like its not ok to have been a nazi as a civilian during the 30s-40s just because hitler ruled the country.

Ive seen my fair share of dirty players but the difference between guys like Howe, Richard etc and a guy like Clarke is that they was ready to stand up for their indiscretions.

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11-17-2010, 05:00 PM
  #29
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One of those legends that grows bigger with age. Although I don't agree with slash the game was a lot different back then. That play crossed over the line of sportsmanship in hockey back then and it would leap over that same line now. Also if it would have happened against the Rangers or Bruins instead of the Russians nobody would have made a big deal about it.
As far as the people saying he is the dirtiest player ever. Apparently those people never saw hockey before the early 70's because he isn't even close to the dirtiest ever. Slashing used to be called defense until the early 80's and taking out the other team's best player was a strategy not bad sportsmanship.
For all you people born after 1985 you missed hockey when it was fun and nasty.

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11-17-2010, 05:42 PM
  #30
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Originally Posted by Briere Up There View Post
Stevens found a way to hurt guys legally, and the diaper segment of NHL fans can't handle it. The guy played hard but he never dished out cheapshots.
Thank you. Well said.

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Originally Posted by Steelhead16 View Post
As far as the people saying he is the dirtiest player ever. Apparently those people never saw hockey before the early 70's....
As one who said just that, why yes, you are correct. Which is why I wrote the dirtiest player I ever saw. Not "the dirtiest player evah!" and other baseless declarations. One had hoped the reader would make that distinction.

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11-17-2010, 05:47 PM
  #31
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Originally Posted by mobilus View Post
I didn't post those to prove anything. For anyone who wasn't born yet in 1972, Clarke's actions weren't only considered acceptable by a lot of people, but appreciated. It was okay then to play dirty against the Russians or any team from the Eastern Bloc, because they were the big, bad communists. The politics was an undercurrent to every east/west hockey game. Messier pretty much behaved the same way in the '87 Canada Cup, throwing elbows in the finals whenever he had the chance.

The behavior was what it was then, and things are different now. There's probably a number of players who would go back to that style if were considered acceptable today.


I don't think Clarke's slash was ever considered acceptable by most Canadians....it was just swept under the rug because it allowed Canada to win the series.

Other 'Western Block' hockey countries saw and still see the action as repulsive; so I don't think you can blame the political climate. Hell, even Czechoslovakia (who had a legitimate reason to HATE the USSR) never crossed that line.

Playing dirty is one thing, but premeditatively injuring an opponent is another. That is never acceptable no matter what the political climate.

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11-17-2010, 05:56 PM
  #32
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Originally Posted by mobilus View Post
I didn't post those to prove anything. For anyone who wasn't born yet in 1972, Clarke's actions weren't only considered acceptable by a lot of people, but appreciated. It was okay then to play dirty against the Russians or any team from the Eastern Bloc, because they were the big, bad communists. The politics was an undercurrent to every east/west hockey game. Messier pretty much behaved the same way in the '87 Canada Cup, throwing elbows in the finals whenever he had the chance.

The behaviour was what it was then, and things are different now. There's probably a number of players who would go back to that style if were considered acceptable today.

I'm not sure I'd want to cite Messier to legitimize anyone. Guy wasn't exactly a class act himself.

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11-17-2010, 07:58 PM
  #33
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Originally Posted by overg View Post
I'm not sure I'd want to cite Messier to legitimize anyone. Guy wasn't exactly a class act himself.
I would. Because Messier was in many ways the perfect combination of skill and nastiness, not just the former. And I'm not even a fan of his per se.

And he won famously; no coincidence. Meanwhile, those on the sidelines can moralize about style and "classiness".

Personally, I loved the elbows and cross checks to the mouth. It's part of what made him great. And it put fear in opponents and, clearly, some fans alike.

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11-17-2010, 09:46 PM
  #34
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Originally Posted by Trottier View Post
I would. Because Messier was in many ways the perfect combination of skill and nastiness, not just the former. And I'm not even a fan of his per se.

And he won famously; no coincidence. Meanwhile, those on the sidelines can moralize about style and "classiness".

Personally, I loved the elbows and cross checks to the mouth. It's part of what made him great. And it put fear in opponents and, clearly, some fans alike.
Exactly.

Don't have to like him, but you should respect his results.

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11-17-2010, 10:30 PM
  #35
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I saw Maurice Richard play. He was not a dirty player. He hardly ever started anything and, although he was probably the most abused player in NHL history, he seldom retaliated except sometimes when he felt he had been subjected to threat of a career-threatening injury. On a few occasions when that happened he did lose his head. It irritates me to read a statement on here that Richard was dirty. It is true that he could take care of himself when necessary.

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11-17-2010, 10:33 PM
  #36
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I saw Maurice Richard play. He was not a dirty player. He hardly ever started anything and, although he was probably the most abused player in NHL history, he seldom retaliated except sometimes when he felt he had been subjected to threat of a career-threatening injury. On a few occasions when that happened he did lose his head. It irritates me to read a statement on here that Richard was dirty. It is true that he could take care of himself when necessary.
When I saw that Peter9 had posted, I already knew this was what it would say

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11-17-2010, 10:40 PM
  #37
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I don't think Clarke's slash was ever considered acceptable by most Canadians....it was just swept under the rug because it allowed Canada to win the series.
"Swept under the rug" means silenced, and silence can be construed as consent. Clarke has taken the grief, but few condemn Ferguson for giving Clarke instructions to go out there and "give that ankle a tap." The fact Ferguson is rarely held accountable is telling. Just blaming Clarke and not the bench is how some Canadians were able to live with it.

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Originally Posted by Zine View Post
Other 'Western Block' hockey countries saw and still see the action as repulsive; so I don't think you can blame the political climate. Hell, even Czechoslovakia (who had a legitimate reason to HATE the USSR) never crossed that line.
If Keon had done the same thing to Lemaire in an NHL game at the time, it would have had a far different reaction from Canadian hockey fans. The political climate was a shadow in the room (or rink if you will).

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Originally Posted by overg View Post
I'm not sure I'd want to cite Messier to legitimize anyone. Guy wasn't exactly a class act himself.
Funny, I post the video clips and I'm accused of denigrating Clarke. I give my interpretation of the events, and now I'm legitimizing Clarke. I've never once said that I agree or disagree with Clarke's slash on Kharlamov. It happened. Not many players are willing to play the way Clarke did. Any reason why Ferguson didn't ask Henderson or Cournoyer to tap Kharlamov? Clarke was a very good hockey player who also happened to be a soldier, who would do what he was told. If Ferguson had told Clarke to go out and slash Yakushev next, he might have done it again.

Clarke and Messier did have dirt under their nails in the NHL, but they'd both dig a little deeper in international hockey. Igor Gouzenko et al was still remembered by Canadians in '72. Russia was in Afghanistan in '87. There was a different standard of ethics that Canadian hockey fans would accept when it came to play against the USSR. The Soviet national team was not held in the same regard as the Minnesota North Stars. They were a fantastic hockey club (threat to national pride) and came from a country that regularly flew bombers over the Arctic to test Canadian air defenses (national security). Whether it was Clarke slapping ankles or Messier clocking Makarov with an open ice elbow, there was little controversy to their sportsmanship at the time.

Looking back at things now, it's easy to say it's repulsive and unsportsmanlike. If something similar were to happen in the Olympics today, there would be a huge outcry from Canadian fans. And that's evolution on everyone's part, no?

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11-17-2010, 10:47 PM
  #38
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Originally Posted by MS View Post
He was a flat-out rat who was possibly the dirtiest player with his stick of the modern era.
Actually, from what I've read from his contemporaries, that title would probably go to Wayne Cashman, with Ed Van Impe coming in a close second.

Not to say that Clarke wasn't in the top 5.

In regards to the OP, he was a great player and a dirty stinkin' rat. Like I said in another thread... if I was playing the aliens with the fate of Earth at stake, Bobby Clarke would definitely be on my team.

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11-17-2010, 11:18 PM
  #39
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Originally Posted by Trottier View Post
Thank you. Well said.



As one who said just that, why yes, you are correct. Which is why I wrote the dirtiest player I ever saw. Not "the dirtiest player evah!" and other baseless declarations. One had hoped the reader would make that distinction.
Oh but I did One. I didn't single you out. I used the word "people". I was hoping the reader would make the distiction of the word people being the plural of the word person which would have been singling you out.

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11-18-2010, 12:59 AM
  #40
vadim sharifijanov
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Its an illegal hit now. It was illegal then, but not enforced by refs like Fraser. You might think different if Stevens hit your kid and he was confined to a wheelchair.
then or now, when has it ever been illegal to stand there while kevyn adams or shane willis or paul kariya skate their faces into your shoulder?

when you stand up a guy at the blueline and then push after the moment of contact, that's a clean hit. and the lindros hit was shoulder to chest-- a textbook hockey hit. his head hitting the ice gave him that concussion.

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11-18-2010, 07:11 AM
  #41
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Originally Posted by vadim sharifijanov View Post
then or now, when has it ever been illegal to stand there while kevyn adams or shane willis or paul kariya skate their faces into your shoulder?

when you stand up a guy at the blueline and then push after the moment of contact, that's a clean hit. and the lindros hit was shoulder to chest-- a textbook hockey hit. his head hitting the ice gave him that concussion.
hahaha.. yeah, he just "stood them up"

wow..

I'm sure LeBlondeDemon is quite correct and peoples opinion would change drastically if it was their son or friend who got flattened in such an irresponsible manner as a Stevens big hit and ended up with long term concussion symptoms. Although I'm sure the hfboards tough guys will continue to deny it.

It isn't that they were illegal under the rules necessarily.. its that he had an intent to injure. Similar to Clarke on Kharlamov.

You can't even begin to tell me if a Russian had gooned one of the Canadian stars in the same blatant fashion that we wouldn't be outraged to this day..

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11-18-2010, 08:23 AM
  #42
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hahaha.. yeah, he just "stood them up"

wow..

I'm sure LeBlondeDemon is quite correct and peoples opinion would change drastically if it was their son or friend who got flattened in such an irresponsible manner as a Stevens big hit and ended up with long term concussion symptoms. Although I'm sure the hfboards tough guys will continue to deny it.

It isn't that they were illegal under the rules necessarily.. its that he had an intent to injure. Similar to Clarke on Kharlamov.

You can't even begin to tell me if a Russian had gooned one of the Canadian stars in the same blatant fashion that we wouldn't be outraged to this day..
Not a single one of Stevens "Illegal" hits would of been any where near as bad if those players had their damned heads up.
Seriously, do you even realise how many times Stevens hit people in exactly the same fashion with just as much force as those "Illegal" hits but there were no injuries simply because the player getting hit had his head up.

It's the same old story, make everyone put on helmets, then the sticks starting coming up more.
Take out the open ice hits and even more players are going to be running around with their heads down.

Used to be if you got tagged with your head down, you knew it was your fault, it was a mistake but somewhere along the way this changed and not for the better.

Say whatever you want but Stevens hits are text book, keeps his arm tucked and explodes into the center of their chests every time.

It sounds cliche but it's so true it's not even funny but you skate around with your head down, you're just friggin asking to get hurt! It doesn't even have to be a player from the other team, how many times have we seen a player with his head down collide with one of his own and get hurt....too many.

There's a huge difference between the blindside hits that the league is cracking down on and the hits Stevens used to throw.

Some people in this thread are calling Stevens dirty and then turning around and defending Messier...are you friggin kidding me?
Messier was one of the dirtiest players around, gimme a break.


Last edited by Rhiessan71: 11-18-2010 at 08:32 AM.
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Old
11-18-2010, 08:46 AM
  #43
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It's the same old story, make everyone put on helmets, then the sticks starting coming up more.
Take out the open ice hits and even more players are going to be running around with their heads down.
Yeah, cause there were no stick infractions without helmets. There are some linked in this thread!

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Used to be if you got tagged with your head down, you knew it was your fault, it was a mistake but somewhere along the way this changed and not for the better.

Say whatever you want but Stevens hits are text book, keeps his arm tucked and explodes into the center of their chests every time.

It sounds cliche but it's so true it's not even funny but you skate around with your head down, you're just friggin asking to get hurt! It doesn't even have to be a player from the other team, how many times have we seen a player with his head down collide with one of his own and get hurt....too many.
I'm not saying his hits were illegal or that players should be ok skating around with their heads down. I'm saying he had an intent to injure and that isn't ok in my books.


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Some people in this thread are calling Stevens dirty and then turning around and defending Messier...are you friggin kidding me?
Messier was one of the dirtiest players around, gimme a break.
Agreed on that one..

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11-18-2010, 10:43 AM
  #44
vadim sharifijanov
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hahaha.. yeah, he just "stood them up"

wow..

I'm sure LeBlondeDemon is quite correct and peoples opinion would change drastically if it was their son or friend who got flattened in such an irresponsible manner as a Stevens big hit and ended up with long term concussion symptoms. Although I'm sure the hfboards tough guys will continue to deny it.

It isn't that they were illegal under the rules necessarily.. its that he had an intent to injure. Similar to Clarke on Kharlamov.

You can't even begin to tell me if a Russian had gooned one of the Canadian stars in the same blatant fashion that we wouldn't be outraged to this day..
this is ridiculous.


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11-18-2010, 11:14 AM
  #45
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I would. Because Messier was in many ways the perfect combination of skill and nastiness, not just the former. And I'm not even a fan of his per se.

And he won famously; no coincidence. Meanwhile, those on the sidelines can moralize about style and "classiness".

Personally, I loved the elbows and cross checks to the mouth. It's part of what made him great. And it put fear in opponents and, clearly, some fans alike.
How tired. A fairy, really? Should I post a picture of neanderthal in response, or can we maybe try and keep this a little productive? I'd probably be more offended if my 3 year old daughter didn't clap with glee upon seeing Tinkerbell.

Of course those of us on the sideline can moralize about style and classiness. How is that any difference that chest thumping about how "tough" certain players were? That's what fans do. The game is here to entertain us. If we're not entertained by attempts to injure, then yeah, we'll complain.

And as for Messier winning, sure he did. So did guys like Wayne Gretzky and Nik Lidstrom. Meanwhile Bob Probert was scarier than Messier and Clarke, but never won a Cup. Point being that tough and dirty doesn't make you a winner.

Clarke and Messier weren't winners solely because they were dirty. And they sure as hell shouldn't be respected because they were dirty. You can compete, and win, without trying to injure your opponent. I prefer to watch a sport where the best players are playing, not sitting in the stands wearing a cast. Clarke and Messier would still have been all time top 100 players without all of the nasty stuff, and the game would have been better for it.

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11-18-2010, 11:37 AM
  #46
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I agree with Vadim Sharifjanov in that Stevens appeared to have an intent to injure...although I don't know how you prove or penalize that. But its evident to me that in the Stevens video, we see a progression from borderline legal hits to trolling for guys in extremely vulnerable positions (Kariya). A number of these hits could be ruled as charging:

Rule 42 - Charging

42.1 Charging - A minor or major penalty shall be imposed on a player who skates or jumps into, or charges an opponent in any manner.

Charging shall mean the actions of a player who, as a result of distance traveled, shall violently check an opponent in any manner. A “charge” may be the result of a check into the boards, into the goal frame or in open ice.

This is taken directly from the NHL rulebook. To me it is very unclear. My understanding growing up is that charging was taking more than three steps to check an opponent. At least that is how my coaches interpreted the rule. Stevens clearly does that. He identifies his victim 20 feet away and although not always rushing towards his victim he is slowly lining him up. He is not reacting to a play developing, he is more like a shark looking for a victim. Now that sounds cool and all, but the consequences of this kind of behavior is why the NHL was forced to make changes. Now the NFL is taking a hard look at their game. Big changes are coming there too. Read the recent SI article on concussions. The physical contact issue becomes less of who's wearing diapers and who's not, but more about what are the long-term health effects. In fact, historically in baseball you were considered a wimp if you didn't stand in the batter's box and take a pitch thrown at you. And in the old days, pitchers head hunted. A recent discovery was made by medical researches on Lou Gehrig suggesting that he did not die from the disease named after him. Rather they are saying he died from long-term complications of being hit in the head by 90 mph baseballs. When he took his turn after Babe Ruth in the batting order, I'm sure many fastballs were thrown at his head.

Also, when the rules for hockey were written almost a century ago, equipment was much more forgiving than it has been in the last 15-20 years. The NHL has been lazy in adapting their rules to the current game. But seeing guys maimed on the ice sells tickets. And money is the bottom line in any business.

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11-18-2010, 02:13 PM
  #47
vadim sharifijanov
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Originally Posted by LeBlondeDemon10 View Post
I agree with Vadim Sharifjanov in that Stevens appeared to have an intent to injure...although I don't know how you prove or penalize that. But its evident to me that in the Stevens video, we see a progression from borderline legal hits to trolling for guys in extremely vulnerable positions (Kariya). A number of these hits could be ruled as charging:

Rule 42 - Charging

42.1 Charging - A minor or major penalty shall be imposed on a player who skates or jumps into, or charges an opponent in any manner.

Charging shall mean the actions of a player who, as a result of distance traveled, shall violently check an opponent in any manner. A “charge” may be the result of a check into the boards, into the goal frame or in open ice.

This is taken directly from the NHL rulebook. To me it is very unclear. My understanding growing up is that charging was taking more than three steps to check an opponent. At least that is how my coaches interpreted the rule. Stevens clearly does that. He identifies his victim 20 feet away and although not always rushing towards his victim he is slowly lining him up. He is not reacting to a play developing, he is more like a shark looking for a victim. Now that sounds cool and all, but the consequences of this kind of behavior is why the NHL was forced to make changes. Now the NFL is taking a hard look at their game. Big changes are coming there too. Read the recent SI article on concussions. The physical contact issue becomes less of who's wearing diapers and who's not, but more about what are the long-term health effects. In fact, historically in baseball you were considered a wimp if you didn't stand in the batter's box and take a pitch thrown at you. And in the old days, pitchers head hunted. A recent discovery was made by medical researches on Lou Gehrig suggesting that he did not die from the disease named after him. Rather they are saying he died from long-term complications of being hit in the head by 90 mph baseballs. When he took his turn after Babe Ruth in the batting order, I'm sure many fastballs were thrown at his head.

Also, when the rules for hockey were written almost a century ago, equipment was much more forgiving than it has been in the last 15-20 years. The NHL has been lazy in adapting their rules to the current game. But seeing guys maimed on the ice sells tickets. And money is the bottom line in any business.
actually, that's the complete opposite of what i meant. if you watch most of those hits, stevens is barely moving if at all. watch the video. how can you say he charged lindros or kariya or anyone else? those guys skated into him. how on earth can lining a guy up be construed as a charge?

intent to injure? really? stevens was one of the best hitters of all time. on top of being big and strong, he had incredible timing. is he supposed to not hit guys because he's good at it and there's the possibility of them getting hurt?

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11-18-2010, 04:21 PM
  #48
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The bottom line is that Stevens would line someone up and deliver punishing body checks pretty much every other game, if not every game.
The only time someone got hurt was when the idiot had their head down, end of story.

Everyone talks about the Lindros hit because it's played endlessly in highlight reels but did any of you actually watch previous NJ/Philly games?
Stevens and Lindros ran at each other with reckless abandon every single shift for years before "that" hit and Lindros already had concussion issues long before that because he constantly skated around with his head down.

If Stevens was dirty then so was every other good open ice hitter we have ever seen.
The Potvin's, the Clark's, the Neely's, even guys like Mike Keane.

I applaud the league for cracking down on the blindside hits to protect the players but at some point you have to realise that nothing protects a player more than the player himself and that means keeping your damned head up.

Personally, I gauge whether a hit is dirty or not by asking one question...would it have still been as severe if the player had his head up.
That's it, if a player had his head up looking where he was going would he still be lying there on the ice.
If the answer is no, then it's his own damned fault for being an idiot.

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11-18-2010, 04:35 PM
  #49
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Originally Posted by C For Choke View Post
Because the guy completely disregards Clarke as being possibly the best forward in the world at the time because he slashed Kharlamov and the deluded fantasy that Kharlamov was somehow some otherworldly super talent which Clarke couldn't hold up to simply because the Red Army mopped the floor the majority of the time with international teams who weren't nearly as good as the USSR.

Holy hell that is a long sentence.
Esposito would be a clear #1 in my book. Followed by Bobby Hull at that time.

But anyway, yes Clarke was a good player. No, he was a great player. I always try to be objective and look at things fairly, although Clarke could make that extremely difficult for you.

No one should ever discount how great of a player he was. He is right in the mix for top 25 all-time.

But yeah the guy was no gentleman. He was a dirty, dirty player who should have had the crap kicked out of him a zillion times. He knew he had the Philly bodyguards out to protect him so he'd use his stick to carve someone out. That's one thing I've always hated about him. He rarely backed up his actions. Yeah I think the 1972 Series was classic, and we won it fair and square, but Clarke slashed a Russian hockey player who he almost certainly knew wouldn't fight back - and he didn't.

From my own memory I don't remember Clarke fighting guys like Cashman, O'Reilly, Jonathan, etc. Clarke was a great player. But Clarke was a coward too.

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11-18-2010, 04:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vadim sharifijanov View Post
this is ridiculous.

Yeah but in 2010 all fo the sudden Stevens to some who never saw him is a culprit. He won three Cups. In each of those three playoff runs he had at least one thunderous check. Even when the Devils went to the final in 2001 he levelled Francis and Willis. Intimidation works regardless of what people want to believe.

Plus the elbowing penalties would explain whether he was dirty. He might have had 10 in his career. That's it. It was always shoulders with Stevens, the way it should be. Derian Hatcher was dirty. Scott Stevens was not dirty. He was a competitor and a warrior and a winner. No one would complain if he was on their team.

To respond to a comment from someone about "what would you think if a Russian nailed a Canadian that way." Well, Kasparitis nailed Lindros in 1998 with a clean check that put him out. Whose fault was it? Lindros' fault, he had his head down.

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