Yashin never scored more than 94 pts in a full season (Spezza scored just as much playing 65 games in a season) and was a complete failure in the playoffs all his career in Ottawa and in NY.
Spezza has had better seasons than him, has way better career ppg, led the team to the finals, and is a career ppg playoff performer. He is at the same age now as when we traded Yashin to NY.
About only thing that Yashin's been 'better' at than Spezza was the injuries.
I love spezza and would want him over that era's yashin any day of the week beacause of jason's heart, and yashin's russianess.
But that doesn't mean yashin wasn't the best player to play for the sens for the first decade of their existence...by far. Alfredsson showed way more heart, and ended up having a better career, but at the start yashin was better then alfredsson.
Yashin's best season's was 94 points in 82 games.Second on the team that year was mceachern with 56 points than dackell with 50. He nearly doubled 2nd place on the team in points and the team finished 2nd in the conference...thanks to yashin. The next season he played, he got 88 points.
Spezza's best season was 92 points in 76 games. PPG-wise, it would be his 90 in 68 games.
Spezza's numbers are slightly better, but you could easily point to the linemates. Heatley/alfredsson vs mceachern/dackell.
Spezza and yashin are very close in talent/production, but yashin unfortunately left town on bad note.
When i think of yashin, take spezza 3-4 years ago,make him russian, give him slightly worse playmaking, but a slightly better shot, and you have yashin. Yashin didn't try as many outrageous dekes though.
I'd liken him to Ryan Getzlaf. Yashin was a centre, so the Kovalev style of perimeter puck protect-cut-to-the-slot-and-shoot doesn't apply.
Yashin had insane strength and very good size. 'Russian Bear' was his nickname when he came over, and as the name implies, it was impossible to remove him from the puck when he had possession. Additionally, his stickhandling attributes were much discussed; he practiced stickhandling in his home all the time even when he was away from the rink.
He would rarely play physical, however, in the sense of throwing hits, blocking shots, or fighting when the time came. He was an oversized finesse player who demanded special attention from the defense, like Getzlaf.
Getzlaf was my first thought too, but Yashin didn't play physical in the rough and tumble, big hits sense (like you said) but always liked to use his size and strength to protect the puck. He was also a better goal scorer in his prime.
Would a Yashin to Joe Thornton comparison work? But less playmaking and a bit more goalscoring?
(I also feel young lol)
Decent. Although thornton has softened up over the years, he still played with way more of an edge then yashin. I don't think yashin ever dropped the gloves. I could be wrong though. They both dissapear in the playoffs though.