- 10/02/2010, 07:14PM ET
Serial Dex said 10/02, 07:14 PM
In talking about NHL success, the topic of what type of career you want to have.
You are enamored by Toews' Conn Smythe award on route to winning the Cup.
I am more impressed by the repetitive brilliance by Ovie in the regular season and his continued competition for the Art Ross & Hart trophies.
(Obviously, winning is paramount. If you can with the championship in ANY sport, that's a great achievement. Winning multiple times obviously trumps either of our stances, hands down. This is also NOT a TD about who is better of the two players.)
So what is better? Continuous regular season success, or one big run?
The reason why I prefer continued success over one immaculate season, is because people remember continued greatness and achievements.
Ovie has been in the running for the scoring title and league MVP every year in the NHL. Toews is a great player, no doubt... but in reality, anyone could do what he has done. Some examples?
Reggie Leach, Butch Goring, Claue Lemieux, Mike Vernon, J.S. Giguere, Brad Richards
None of those players will be ever thought of one of the best of their time. Ovie will be.
kingeraaa said 10/03, 06:27 PM
1st things 1st,
I thought this was about what was the better success, and you have A.O, as a guy who will be remembered because of his Hart, and Scoring titles, and then go on to say that he will be remembered as one of the best all time, while ALL the other names you mentioned are nobody's that prove anyone can win a Conn Smythe award.
Did I get that right? IMO you are implying that those names you listed are NOT remembered for greatness, and that in the 5 years that A.O has been here, he undoubtedly will be remembered for being "One of the best of his time", and he probably will be, unless he gets hurt, or becomes a huge target.
This is about what's better Hart trophy year after year or a Stanley Cup, and a Conn Smythe.
When ever comparing Brodeur and Roy, the latter takes the edge due to the Smythe trophies he has, and it's hard to argue against, I know I've tried!
A.O didn't win a Hart or a scoring title last year, he's been in the league for going on his 6th year, but he hasn't been to the big game yet.
If you think that repeated Reg season Trophies trump playoff success, the I suggest you speak to Ray Bourque. No Smythe, but 1 Cup sure got him smiling!
Serial Dex said 10/04, 12:18 PM
I'm glad you brought up Ray Bourque. He had a famed career for what he did in Boston, both on the ice and off it. He was a great ambassador to the game, was always in the running for a Norris award, etc... and NEVER won the cup. When mentioning fabled greats, you bring up Bourque, specifically his time in Boston.
His late career move to COL to win a Cup was bittersweet indeed. First thing he did was bring it back to Boston.
Bourque will be forever remembered for season after season of greatness, not for his one cup win with another franchise.
Another reason why I think multiple seasons of contending for the Art/Hart is better than 1 cup & 1 Conn is because of the time it takes to display your greatness.
One cup & 1 Conn requires roughly 20 games of elite play. Multiple seasons of great play involves between 200-300 games (depending on how many seasons we talk here). What is harder? What is more impressive? Having 1 good cup run or being top of the league time and time again?
Johan Franzen comes to mind. He didn't win the Conn (injury stopped him) but his name became house hold because of one 3 week stretch. Not as inspiring as 3 seasons of that output.
kingeraaa said 10/05, 05:04 AM
Thanks for doing all the work Dex!
I am a hockey fan 1st, and know full well what Bourque meant to the game, and to Boston.
I brought him up, as he had played for 20 years in BOS, and made it to the end twice with them, and came up short. Against mighty fine teams I might add.
He ASKED to be traded! Here was a man who NEVER wanted to leave his team, and was crying when he was traded, and crying when he won the cup, as it is the 1 thing he hadn't won for BOS! The MOST important thing, which is precisely why he brought it back to them, BUT, it was also the one thing he hadn't won for HIMSELF!
He left for the one thing every hockey player wants, and that's a Stanley Cup! Period.
Now factor in that players UP their game when in the playoffs, and that it's THE hardest Tourney in hockey, where it's the norm to play through horrible injuries, and that it takes more than skill....it takes a lot of endurance and heart, and some emerge as the elite playoff "go to guys" like C. Lemieux. He was well known to up his game come playoffs.
Chicago just blew up their winning team, and I bet every player would rather have that one Cup, then 5 Harts any day!
Serial Dex said 10/05, 02:41 PM
Look at Big Buff in CHI last year. He had a massive playoffs and garnered some Conn chatter for his breakout performance. What did Chicago do? Got rid of him right away. He had a career defining playoffs and Chicago didn't really care. They knew that his regular season would be subpar again and that his 3 weeks of dominance was a flash in the pan.
There is also something else that athletes strive for, besides winning a cup. That is being the best they can be. Competition is hugely fierce in athletes. If you are a true athlete, you hate being second best. You want fame, fortune, etc...
Look at a guy like Hossa for example.
He was a great player and considered one of the league's best scorers. Then when he kept jumping from team to team in order to win a cup, people laughed at him. Do you think his career is viewed in a better light because he has won a cup? I don't.
Basically, this argument is like comparing guys like Jagr and Fedorov to guys like Franzen and Leach.
Leach and Franzen will never be uttered in the breath as these two, even though they each had 1 amazing Cup run where they were the best player on their teams.
kingeraaa said 10/06, 03:31 AM
These are 3 examples you're using? None have a Smythe, but you mention how 1 would have won if he hadn't gotten injured, and then the other, was a POSSIBLE runner up to Toews, the guy that won the Smythe! Really? Not to mention, neither was close to winning ANY awards during their NHL careers thus far! Big Buff was a role player, and he's gone now, so great coaching in Chicago. None of them have the prerequisite Smythe, or any major awards for this debate!
You implied that some names you have written in the 1st arg, won't be remembered for greatness, but then go on to list Franzen as a household name?
BTW Franzen wasn't the best on his team! Zetterberg won the Smythe!
This is about what kind of success is better. I'm not comparing a bunch of players....you are. I mentioned #77, because he left JUST to win a CUP!
Toews, isn't the same kind of player that A.O is. Apples/Oranges, and he won the Smythe, because he was THE best player in the playoffs, and won a Cup.
No matter the # of Hart/Ross trophies won, Ovechkin won't be happy until he's won THE Cup! He's that competitive!
Any "great" player asked, will say The Cup is #1!
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