Historical debates, all time rankings etc

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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Rylan on Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:15 am

If Tretiak stays in goal in 1980, USA does not beat the Soviets and Miracle never happens. Just my gut feeling.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:28 am

Rylan wrote:If Tretiak stays in goal in 1980, USA does not beat the Soviets and Miracle never happens. Just my gut feeling.


Meh, I mean, anything is possible in these what-if situations...but just know that Myshkin wasn't exactly chopped liver and Tretiak was certainly far from infalliable...when Canada scouts first saw Tretiak they said he was terrible (he did surrender 8 goals the game he saw them, that's a little mini-story on its own) and remember, Myshkin was brilliant in 1984 Canada Cup (Tournament All-Star Team) and was dominant in the 1985 World Championships...even before that, Myshkin was stellar when he shutout the NHL All-Stars in 1979. So he wasn't necessarily a slouch either.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Rylan on Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:41 am

I am not saying he was a slouch. It was more of psych advantage to the US than a talent thing. Getting Tretiak pulled had to be a HUGE morale boost to the Americans. If that makes sense?
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:52 am

Rylan wrote:I am not saying he was a slouch. It was more of psych advantage to the US than a talent thing. Getting Tretiak pulled had to be a HUGE morale boost to the Americans. If that makes sense?


Oh certainly. There's a lot of factors that go into that game and that Olympics, for sure. Tikhonov was trying to get his guys going also, the team didn't take the United States too seriously - for good reason. The Soviets weren't playing terribly well and Tretiak's lack of focus was clear on that last goal of the period. Though, Tretiak's bounce-backability was historically noteworthy, it's hard to tell what would have happened if Tretiak remained in the goal. Unfortunately for Tikhonov, his yanking of Tretiak caused his team to lock up even further. Tikhonov admits it was his biggest mistake.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Rylan on Sun Aug 05, 2012 12:03 pm



While we are talking about it.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Rylan on Sun Aug 05, 2012 12:25 pm

I had forgotten how terrible that 2nd American goal was. It was brutal rebound control.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 1:19 pm

Assuming that's it for Soviets in the NHL, anything we want to discuss next?
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Rylan on Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:07 pm

If we think Soviets are 86'd, why not just do all of Europe? Is Kovalev or Bondra better? Is Jagr the greatest European player ever? Where does Hasek fall in terms of all time greats? etc.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:15 pm

Rylan wrote:If we think Soviets are 86'd, why not just do all of Europe? Is Kovalev or Bondra better? Is Jagr the greatest European player ever? Where does Hasek fall in terms of all time greats? etc.


Soviets can be brought to further discussion. This all of Europe thing, does it have the same parameters of the Russian discussion? That is, what they did in the NHL? Or their complete work? Which would drag in players like Tretiak, Kharlamov, etc.

Regardless of the answer, I believe #1 remains the same though.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby MRandall25 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:20 pm

If we're doing all of Europe, where do players like Lidstrom, Salming, and Selanne fall?
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:26 pm

Well, top of my head, Lidstrom and Hasek are 1, 2. The order can be discussed certainly. Then Jagr. That's what my initial instinct tells me. After that, I think it gets interesting...am I missing someone that could penetrate that top-3?
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Rylan on Mon Aug 06, 2012 5:58 pm

Those were more suggestive questions mikey that you, or someone else, could mold into a better discussion.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 8:01 pm

Rylan wrote:Those were more suggestive questions mikey that you, or someone else, could mold into a better discussion.


I'll do NHL-era players, if the group (or audience, as it were) approves. Because doing the Soviet players really clouds it for a multitude of reasons...
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Zach6668 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 8:27 pm

How about best player per decade?

Completely off the top of my head, and wide open to discussion...

90s - Lemieux
80s - Gretzky
70s - Orr ... Bossy? (couple careers cut short, not spanning the whole decade...)
60s - ?
50s - Howe
40s - ?
30s - ?
20s - clearly need Mikey's help on the early years...

Would research more, but just wasting time on my phone, and kind of a pain.

Was thinking about the early NHL a bit and was wondering who the best players were then, and that kinda led me to this...
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby MRandall25 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:13 pm

Could it be argued that Jagr was a better player in the 90's than Lemieux since Lemieux didn't play for the last ~ 3 years.

Perhaps Yzerman is in the discussion? Maybe even Gretzky again? Lemieux doesn't even make the top 10 in points during the 90's (sources: http://www.sporcle.com/games/Lauro/nhl_scorer_decade and http://www.hockey-reference.com/play-in ... finder.cgi)

As for the 60's, Bobby Hull and Stan Mikita?
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Zach6668 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:18 pm

Yeah, could see others over Mario for that decade, his best numbers came in the 80s.

Also, no idea why I added Bossy to 70s, total brain fart there. He was mostly in the 80s, but can't compare to Gretzky, obviously.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Rylan on Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:32 pm

I don't like decade arguments. Never did, never will.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:33 pm

Top-10 NHL-era Europeans

1. Nicklas Lidström - 7x Norris Trophy Winner. 11x First-Team AS, 2x Second-Team AS, Conn Smythe Trophy. 6x Top-10 Hart finishes (non-traditional d-man award). 4x Champion, 6x Finalist. 5x Top-10 in points. 5x Led d-men in points, 14x top-5 AD in points. The predominant defenseman of the generation. Arguably a top-5 defenseman of all-time. A host of Norris trophies, playoff success, international success. Has the highest winning pct. among skaters in NHL history. Perfect defensively, terrific puck-mover, all situation player. Calculated, almost robotic. Sprang onto the scene in the 1997 Finals when he and Vladimir Konstantinov shutdown Eric Lindros. Catapulted to stardom when he seemingly upped his game to account for the untimely loss of Konstantinov. The only half knock you can make against him is the weaker competition he faced among his peers late in his career. Bourque, Stevens, MacInnis, Chelios, Coffey, Niedermayer, etc. retired around the same time. After that, he faced relatively limited competition.

2. Dominik Hašek - 6x Vezina Trophy Winner. 6x First-Team AS, 2x Hart Trophy winner (extremely rare for a goalie, only 'tender to win two and did it back to back). 2x leader in GAA, 9x top-5 in GAA. 6x leader in save pct., 9x top-5 in save pct. 4x leader in shutouts, 7x top-5 in shutouts. All-time career leader in save pct. (adjust for era, each of the next 17 goaltenders are currently active in the league and 22 of 23 are active (Manny Fernandez)). His save pct. above league average his staggering. 2x Champion, 4x Finalist. Won the first best-on-best Olympics, named best goaltender. Ignoring his European exploits (youngest pro player in history at the time at 16, Czechoslovakian Best Goaltender 5x in a row, etc.) he has an impressive resume and a great case for best goaltender of all-time when you put it all together. Had a style all his own, acrobatic and with a sharp sense of vertical geometry. A terrific athlete that is still performing at a high level into his mid-40's, he's been a pro for 30 years! When he sprang to North American scene: A 70-save, 4 overtime shutout vs. New Jersey (Brodeur) in the 1994 playoffs. When he assured us of his stardom: the 1998 Olympics, defeating all of the best players in the world, including a shutout of the mighty Russians in the Gold Medal game.

3. Jaromír Jágr - 1x Hart Trophy Winner (nearly won it in 2000 while missing a quarter of the games). 7x First-Team AS, 1x Second-Team AS. 8x Top-10 in goals (11th all-time); 3x leader in assists, 10x top-10 in assists (12th all-time); 5x leader in points, 11x top-10 in points (8th all-time). 2x Champion. Gold medal in the first best-on-best Olympics. Was considered the best skater in the world throughout the late 90's and scored throughout the C&G Era in tremendous fashion. One of the finest playmaking wingers in history and will still finish top-10 all-time in goals when he retires. His 1999 and 2001 seasons (both 120-point efforts) are two of the best seasons of the era, he dominated his peers in such a way that is remarkable. A power forward that controlled the puck like few others, his possession game with players hanging off of him was extremely noteworthy. His coming out party: 1992 Stanley Cup Finals vs. Chicago. Cemented his stardom: The shortened lockout season where he scored 70 points in 48 games.

More to follow...
Last edited by mikey287 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:35 pm

Rylan wrote:I don't like decade arguments. Never did, never will.


Not a big fan of decades, because it doesn't do players justice. I mean, what if a player dominated from 1915-1925? He loses? Bleh...
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 10:04 pm

Zach6668 wrote:How about best player per decade?

Completely off the top of my head, and wide open to discussion...

90s - Lemieux
80s - Gretzky
70s - Orr ... Bossy? (couple careers cut short, not spanning the whole decade...)
60s - ?
50s - Howe
40s - ?
30s - ?
20s - clearly need Mikey's help on the early years...

Would research more, but just wasting time on my phone, and kind of a pain.

Was thinking about the early NHL a bit and was wondering who the best players were then, and that kinda led me to this...


If I absolutely had to answer though, completely off the top of my head, not thought out...

2000's - Lidstrom
1990's - Lemieux (Gretzky)
1980's - Gretzky
1970's - Orr
1960's - Hull (Beliveau, Harvey, Howe?)
1950's - Howe
1940's - Richard
1930's - Shore
1920's - Morenz (Nighbor, Stewart?)
1910's - Taylor (Lalonde, Malone, Cleghorn?)
1900's - Yeesh, Tommy Phillips? Art Ross? Si Griffis? I'm probably missing something...

I don't know just a quick guess...lots to discuss, but again, it's not a terribly useful venture. Dividing into eras and dissecting, might be more interesting...but even so, dividing by time can be dubious and subjective...
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Zach6668 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 10:17 pm

That's fair, just put it out there amid my boredom.

Was really thinking about researching some early and pre-NHL stuff. I remember being fascinated by a book I read a million years ago (will have to go home to my bookshelf to remember the title, but it was deinitely Leafs/Habs-centric).
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Gaucho on Tue Aug 07, 2012 7:06 am

Great job, mikey. 4-10 (in no particular order) Selanne, Kurri, Salming, Stastny, Forsberg, Sundin?
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Rylan on Tue Aug 07, 2012 9:14 am

Those were my pics Gaucho. Though my admiration of Bondra would probably have me try to sneak him in at number 10 over Sundin.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby Mongoose87 on Tue Aug 07, 2012 2:35 pm

I think I have more respect for Selanne than any two of those guys put together. No offense, Pete.
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Re: Historical debates, all time rankings etc

Postby mikey287 on Tue Aug 07, 2012 4:13 pm

4. Jari Kurri - 2x First-Team AS, 3x Second-Team AS. Led the league in goals once, 4x top-5 in goals (18th all-time in goals). 3x top-10 in assists. 6x top-10 in points (20th all-time in points). Selke finishes: 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 10th, 10th. 6th all-time in shorthanded goals. Received regular AS winger voting and Lady Byng voting. 5x Champion, 7x Finalist. Kurri is incorrectly regarded as an also-ran with Gretzky, a tag should be left for Blair McDonald or even Bernie Nicholls to some extent. Kurri is one the more well-rounded players in NHL history that regularly played in all situations for his teams. His finishing ability made him valuable to Gretzky and the Oilers, he was a noted marksman that scored on over 19% of his career shots. In the Oilers five Stanley Cup wins, Kurri led the playoffs in goals four times. Scored over 100 goals in 200 playoff games. His coming out party was his performance in the pre-dynastic Oilers postseason runs, shaking off the "Euros are soft and not competitive" mantra that surrounded many at that time (I blame Inge Hammarstrom... :P ). Noted finisher, tenacious defensive player and all-around gentleman, Jari Kurri was one of the great ones.

5. Börje Salming - One of the pioneers of Europeans in the NHL. 1x First-Team AS, 5x Second-Team AS. Norris Trophy record: (2, 2, 3, 3, 4, 4, 5, 10). Hart trophy record: (4, 7). 5x Top-10 in goals among d-men. 6x Top-10 in assists AD. 6x Top-10 in points AD. 3x Viking Award Winner (best Swedish player outside Sweden). Named to early best-on-best All-Tournament Team (1976 Canada Cup). Considered one of the league's premier defensemen throughout the 1970's and 80's. The first great European-born and -trained player in the NHL. Salming had immense skill and was noted for having almost no weaknesses. He was recognized league-wide for his terrific skating and puck-rushing skills, his snappy wristshot and his adept passing skills. As a well-conditioned, strong athlete, Salming could play physically and was a great defensive player that routinely had to shutdown some of the league's best opposition. Salming was a fearless competitor that seemed to enjoy blocking shots. According to projections and print evidence from the time, Salming played in upwards of 30 minutes per night in the NHL and played at least that much during the Canada Cup (which is when he cemented his stardom). One of the finest overall d-men in history.

6. Peter Forsberg - 1x Hart Trophy winner. 3x First-Team AS. Led the league in assists once, 7x top-10 in assists. Led the league in points once, 5x top-10 in points. 2x Champion. Represented Sweden proudly in many Olympics and other best-on-best tournaments. Prominent in Hart and Selke voting. Forsberg was a terrific competitor, insanely skilled, an elite playmaker that could play rough while maintaining a strong defensive conscience. Recognized as one of the league's best players in his era. Unfortunately, injuries derailed what could have been an even more amazing career. Forsberg was limited to just 708 NHL games from 1994-95 through 2010-11. He could have been a five-time Swedish Olympian, but missed one because of injury. He could have been a multiple Hart Trophy winner, but will have to settle for one. He might have made the difference on the 2002 Avs and gotten at least one more championship, but will have to settle for two. He could have more than one 80-game seasons, he could have had multiple 30+ goal seasons, he has none, he could have been top-10 all time in assists...he's 66th (one assist behind Salming). Forsberg leaped onto the scene with his masterful shootout move in the 1994 Olympics vs. Canada. Trivia: Does anyone remember what fringe NHL goaltender that Forsberg made to reconsider his job choice on that shootout move in Lillehammer?

7. Sergei Fedorov - Hart trophy, 2x Selke winner, 1st team AS, two top-10 point finishes, multi-position player, major piece to 3 Cup wins and another runner-up finish, highest scoring Russian in NHL history, represented himself well in the first best-on-best olympics (silver), a peak that rivals Forsberg, left you wanting a tiny bit more after teasing us with that 1994 season that was one of the finest seasons in NHL history. Noted defensive force, so much so that he was moved to defense both later in his career and at times in his prime. All situation player. A mortal lock for the HHOF. His best is better than many players' best, which is noteworthy. He had the ability to be more dominant than Forsberg, faster than Bure, and take over games...it didn't always happen that way though. He narrowly misses being the #6 on this list (mainly because I don't want to hear it from Andre! :wink: ). Fedorov's coming out party and climb to stardom was reached when he took over the entire league in 1994 and made it his own personal playground.

More to follow...
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