Grand Fuhr eh?

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by wilka91*, Mar 11, 2005.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. wilka91*

    wilka91* Registered User

    Joined:
    May 5, 2004
    Messages:
    4,251
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I often hear people mention Grant Fuhr as one of the best ever NHL goalies.

    And to be honest, I don't understand that.

    He won all his Cups on a team that was filled with the best group of players of the 1980s, especially the forwards, and the Oilers dominated other teams mostly thanks to their offense.

    Then, when Fuhr went to other teams in the 1990s he was simply awful!!!

    So what makes him so good? :help:
     
  2. Fuhr was for the most part an average goaltender with the occasional flashes of brilliance. Yes he was terrible in the early 90's, but I hear he had some alcohol and other personal problems to deal with. He did get a chance to play in the dead puck era some with the blues and was adequate. Quite the workhorse from 95-98.
     
  3. JCD

    JCD Registered User

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    14,690
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Home Page:
    Grant was the lone semblance of a defense for those Oilers teams for most of the night. If he didn't do his job, Oilers give up as many goals as they score.

    Grant continued to have success after leaving the Oilers. He was strong for a bad Toronto team, even being named an All-Star there (though I can't recall if he was 1st or 2nd team; no this isn't the All-Star game either). After so-so stints for the next couple years, Grant re-emerged as an elite goaltender under Keenan in St. Louis. His numbers don't look impressive, but his play sure as heck did. His work in the play-offs for the Blues was particularly spectacular. He wasn't awful, he was awsome.

    While Fuhr did enjoy the luxary of playing on a stacked team to earn those Cups, his success post-Edmonton more than showed he was for real.
     
  4. Hockey Outsider

    Hockey Outsider Registered User

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2005
    Messages:
    4,569
    Likes Received:
    487
    Trophy Points:
    124
    During the 80's, Grant Fuhr was a consistently good, above average goalie. Not great, but solid. He played well enough to allow the Oilers to win 5 Cups; but since he beneffted from such strong offense (and somewhat below average defense), "well enough" meant being merely above average. He was a decent goalie til around 1995; from then on he was one of the worst in the league.

    He won a Vezina, was selected to 2 all-star teams and was a runner-up for the Hart (to Gretzky). Fuhr was a good goalie, but I also don't understand why people see him as one of the best ever.

    Also, I don't buy the argument that he "won" 400+ games and "won" 5 Stanley Cups. Any hockey player will tell you that winning games and the Cup is a team effort and hockey is a team game, so I don't think that Fuhr should get personal accolades for team success. I think that Gretzky, Kurri, Coffey and Messier might have had something to do with the fact that the Oilers won.

    EDIT: I agree that Fuhr was a much better goalie in the playoffs. The data supports it. Here's his save percentage in each of the years he played at least 10 playoff games:

    Year, Regular Season Sv%, Playoff Save%
    1984 0.883 0.910
    1985 0.884 0.894
    1986 0.890 0.897 (only 9 games)
    1987 0.881 0.908
    1988 0.881 0.883
    1991 0.897 0.895
    1998 0.898 0.906
    1999 0.892 0.898

    The stats don't lie. For the most part, Fuhr elevated his game during the playoffs, especially early in his career.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2005
  5. monkey_00*

    monkey_00* Guest

    There aren't too many Goalies out there that would be able to play in Net on a team like those high flying Edmonton Oilers...you have to have the right type of mental makeup for it.......let's face it, it was up-and-down action all the way in any of those Edmonton Oilers' games......what they use to say about Grant Fuhr is that he was probably the best goalie to have on your team when your team had the 1-goal lead cause he just wouldn't let your team back into it...whenever the Oilers needed to protect that one goal lead that's when Fuhr would raise the level of his game up to another level.....was very QUICK with Cat-like reflexes too.......Gretzky use to say about Fuhr that he was the best athlete on the Oilers squad.
     
  6. Buffaloed

    Buffaloed webmaster

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    27,362
    Likes Received:
    1,999
    Trophy Points:
    232
    Location:
    Buffalo
    Fuhr was one of the best clutch goaltenders of all time. His major weakness was that he played up to the level of the opponent. If his team had a big lead he'd lose concentration and give up soft goals, but once it was close, he was as tough to score on as anyone. It cost him in stats, but not in the win column. Hasek hated to give up a goal to anyone at anytime. I don't think Fuhr could have cared less as long as his team won. I can't imagine anyone that actually saw Fuhr play a lot being too critical. It's too bad he was plagued by knee injuries for a good portion of his career.
     
  7. Poignant Discussion*

    Poignant Discussion* I tell it like it is

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2003
    Messages:
    8,422
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Self Employed
    Location:
    Gatineau, QC
    Fuhr might let in 3 goals, but try to get that forth goal against him.

    He was one of the best goalies at playing the score
     
  8. Tom Barrasso, Don Beaupre, Pat Riggin, John Vanbiesbrouck, Mike Vernon, Reggie Lemelein, Pete Peters, Mike Liut, all 80's goaltenders I would take ahead of Fuhr,all would've achieved the same success had they played on Edmonton.
     
  9. monkey_00*

    monkey_00* Guest

    Tom Barasso won a couple of Stanley Cups with Pittsburgh, Mike Vernon was great with Calgary and Detroit, Pete Peeters I would put on my Top-5 most-underrated goalies of alltime.....BUT, the others like Lemelin, Vanbiesbrouck and Liut are on another level below the first 3 I think.......

    It's hard to say how guys like Barasso, Vernon and Peeters would have done in Edmonton in place of Grant Fuhr.....out of those 3 I would pick Vernon cause he played on some highscoring teams in Calgary and Detroit.
     
  10. acr*

    acr* Guest

    I still say Andy Moog was better than Fuhr over the span of his career. People have yelled at me in the past for saying that, but the numbers don't lie, Moog was able to play at a good level all the way until his last season(when he helped the Canadiens upset a strong Pittsburgh team), Fuhr's last few years with St. Louis and Calgary were just embarrassing to watch.
     
  11. Lowetide

    Lowetide Registered User

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    13,280
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    159
    Fuhr and Cheevers are two of the most underrated goalies in history imo because of the teams they played for. Because the Oilers and Bruins had all of their cannons pointed in one direction these two goalies were the last line of defense.

    If you look purely at stats, Ken Dryden's stats are breath taking. However, had Fuhr played in front of Savard, Robinson, Lapointe et al, his numbers would have been much better.

    We can't score those old games, and I mostly don't buy into arguments that begin "well the stats say this but I know that". But if you saw an Oilers game in the 80s you know there were a few two on one's coming back the other way every night.

    Grant Fuhr belongs (along with Cheevers) at the very top of the family of goalies who played for teams that played wide open hockey and whose offensive numbers were gained at the expense of team defense.

    These teams could only succeed if they had a quality goaltender who rarely let in the goal that killed you.

    Fuhr and Cheevers were two of these.
     
  12. monkey_00*

    monkey_00* Guest

    I agree that Fuhr was great........however, you lost me when you also decided to include Gerry Cheevers
     
  13. Porn*

    Porn* Registered User

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2002
    Messages:
    36,420
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    171
    Occupation:
    Scheming demon
    Location:
    In your nightmares
    This thread is great... reasons why he's my alltime fav goalie!!!
     
  14. Malefic74

    Malefic74 Registered User

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2003
    Messages:
    1,758
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Halfway between Nothing and Not Much Else
    Home Page:
    Grant Fuhr was a throwback goalie. He didn't care at all if he allowed 7 goals as long as his team had 8. He has often said the only stat he cared about was WINS. When someone pointed out that that was more of a team stat than a goalie stat his answer was "Exactly." All sports have become more and more statistics oriented in the last 15-20 years and Fuhr played the position when no one cared what his Save Percentage was. The question was "Does he win more than he loses?"

    Watch the 87 Canada Cup for proof. The Russians are always pressing and Fuhr simply will not let them get either back into it of too far out front. Like Billy Smith and Ken Dryden before him he was a money goalie. When the big save was needed he was there.
     
  15. John Flyers Fan

    John Flyers Fan Registered User

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    22,416
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Home Page:

    Couldn't agree more.

    Fuhr was great at making the big save at the big time, and his ability allowed the Oilers to play the style that he played. Had soem of the quickest reflexes the game has ever seen.
     
  16. Bring Back Bucky

    Bring Back Bucky Registered User

    Joined:
    May 19, 2004
    Messages:
    7,954
    Likes Received:
    17
    Trophy Points:
    96
    Occupation:
    Hamster Trainer
    Location:
    Delicieux!

    You're right on the mark JFF. Fuhr was awesome. Typically, when his skills are questioned, it's by someone who never saw him play making inferences based on the fact that his stats reflect a different era and the style of the team in front of him.
     
  17. Big McLargehuge

    Big McLargehuge Registered User

    Joined:
    May 9, 2002
    Messages:
    68,828
    Likes Received:
    1,088
    Trophy Points:
    215
    Location:
    S. Pasadena, CA
    Once Barasso moved to Pittsburgh I don't think he had any semblence of a defense in front of him at any time. The Penguins were a run and gun team that just didn't play defense at any point of the late 80s or 90s.



    Fuhr definitely is one of the most clutch goalies of all time. I'd never name him as one of the best goalies of all time, but the stats don't lie, he stepped up his game when needed.
     
  18. JCD

    JCD Registered User

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    14,690
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Home Page:
    The Samuelssons did a pretty good job in front of Barrasso, but you are right. The Penguins were absolutely a run-and-gun team.
     
  19. David Puddy

    David Puddy Registered User

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2003
    Messages:
    5,824
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    Home Page:
    Here is a link to Daryl Shilling's The Hockey Project study of "Hall of Fame Monitor: Goaltenders." Shilling awards points for accomplishments in 16 categories to judge whether or not a goaltender has the numbers to gain entrance to the Hockey Hall of Fame.

    Also, here are the First and Second All-Star Teams of the 1980's. Not one goalie was named to an end of the season All-Star Team more than twice, and none were named to better than one First and one Second All-Star Team. Other decades had dominant showings by goaltenders, Dominik Hasek (5 First All-Star Teams) in 1990's, Dryden, (5 First's and 1 Second) in the 1970's, Glen Hall (5 First's and 3 Second's) in the 1960's, Terry Sawchuck (3 First's and 3 Second's) in the 1950's, Bill Durnam (5 First's) in the 1940's and Charlie Gardiner (3 First's and 1 Second) in the 1930's.


    1988-89
    1st Team: Patrick Roy, Montreal
    2nd Team: Mike Vernon, Calgary

    1987-88
    1st Team: Grant Fuhr, Edmonton
    2nd Team: Patrick Roy, Montreal

    1986-87
    1st Team: Ron Hextall, Philadelphia
    2nd Team: Mike Liut, Hartford

    1985-86
    1st Team: John Vanbiesbrouck, NY Rangers
    2nd Team: Bob Froese, Philadelphia

    1984-85
    1st Team: Pelle Lindbergh, Philadelphia
    2nd Team: Tom Barrasso, Buffalo

    1983-84
    1st Team: Tom Barrasso, Buffalo
    2nd Team: Pat Riggin, Washington

    1982-83
    1st Team: Pete Peeters, Boston
    2nd Team: Roland Melanson, NY Islanders

    1981-82
    1st Team: Bill Smith, NY Islanders
    2nd Team: Grant Fuhr, Edmonton

    1980-81
    1st Team: Mike Liut, St. Louis
    2nd Team: Mario Lessard, Los Angeles

    1979-80
    1st Team: Tony Esposito, Chicago
    2nd Team: Don Edwards, Buffalo

    Goalie, 1st Team - 2nd Team
    Tom Barrasso, 1-1
    Grant Fuhr, 1-1
    Mike Luit, 1-1
    Patrick Roy, 1-1
    Tony Esposito, 1-0
    Ron Hextal, 1-0
    Pelle Lindbergh, 1-0
    Pete Peters, 1-0
    Bill Smith, 1-0
    John Vanbiesbrouck, 1-0
    Don Edwards, 0-1
    Bob Froese, 0-1
    Mario Lessard, 0-1
    Roland Melanson, 0-1
    Pat Riggin, 0-1
    Mike Vernon, 0-1
     
  20. Psycho Papa Joe

    Psycho Papa Joe Porkchop Hoser

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    23,349
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Forensic Accountant
    Location:
    Cesspool, Ontario
    Home Page:
    Fhur is quite simply one of the 5 best money goalies I have ever seen play the game. The guy was an incredible athlete and had as much to do with the success of his teams as just about any goalie I have ever seen play the game. For people who just look at the stats and shrug, you probably never saw him play the game. He is the number 1 reason why looking at the stats of a goalie, rather than watch his game, is a poor way of rating a goalie. Among the best goalscorer's in the 80's he was always rated as the toughest goalie to beat and pure money when a game was on the line. Outside of Roy, Brodeur and Hasek, he is the best goalie of the last 25 years.
     
  21. Snap Wilson

    Snap Wilson Registered User

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2003
    Messages:
    5,838
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Reprinted from another post:

    "My thoughts on Grant Fuhr can be summed up like this:

    Goalie A: 238-124-41, .657 Win%, 3.54 GAA, .875 Sv%
    Goalie B: 226-117-54, .659 Win%, 3.69 GAA, .866 Sv%

    Pretty close, right? Goalie A has a slight advantage in terms of GAA and Save percentage.

    Goalie B is Grant Fuhr during his time with Edmonton.

    Goalie A is Edmonton's OTHER goalies during the same time period.

    No, I don't think Fuhr was "hands down" the best goaltender of the 80's, when he often wasn't appreciably better than the guy he was backing up. He basically split time with Andy Moog while Mooger was there, got one season (1987-88) as the dominant guy in the net, than was replaced by Ranford in two years. He won the Cups, which is what everyone remembers, but Moog got the team to the Finals in '83, and Ranford won the Cup after a good portion of the team left. I think they would have won if they had started Moog, who was 7-0 in the playoffs during that period.

    He WAS an excellent player, better than his numbers for a variety of reasons and very exciting to watch. He's also a good guy, and he got terribly shafted by the league's substance abuse policy. While I'm glad he got a day in the sun, I think he was a marginal HOF selection."
     
  22. JimmyPage

    JimmyPage Registered User

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Messages:
    1,049
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Sports Television
    Location:
    Toronto
    Andy Moog would probably be considered by fans as a pretty good goalie, he had some pretty good seasons with the Bruins. So if Grant Fuhr can be considered by some as just an average or above-average goalie, then why wasn't Moog able to take away the job from Fuhr?
    I think Fuhr is very under-rated because he played in a high scoring era and played on a team that was stacked. IMO, Fuhr was a huge money-goalie and never would allow that back-breaking goal. Sure, his post-Oiler days were not that good but at that point he was battling age and a bad back. Look at his two Canada Cup stints (84 & 87) where team Canada defeated and equally stacked russian team. The goal totals were high (as it was for the era) but he was clutch. Also, look at the 87 Cup final where the Oilers played a pretty stacked Flyers team and defeated them in a close seven game series. Fuhr simply was money.
     
  23. gr8haluschak

    gr8haluschak Registered User

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Messages:
    3,222
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    84
    Why did Moog lose his job then if he was so good ? why couldn't Moog get it done in Boston, especially the second year that they were in the finals - the year they were supose to beat the Oilers, and I don't know what you were watching but ALL of Fuhr's years in St Louis were damn good.
     
  24. Buffaloed

    Buffaloed webmaster

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    27,362
    Likes Received:
    1,999
    Trophy Points:
    232
    Location:
    Buffalo
    Moog was just an average goalie in the playoffs.

    Moog: 132GP, 68W, 57L, 3.14GAA
    Fuhr: 150GP, 92W, 50L, 2.92GAA

    It's not even close as to which one was the money goaltender.
     
  25. Trottier

    Trottier Very Random

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    29,232
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Marketing Executive
    Location:
    San Diego
    Home Page:
    Did you watch the man play goal for the Edmonton Oilers, 1981-90?

    If you did, you would have the answer to your question.

    I'll assume that you didn't.

    The Oilers were, as you suggest, a dominating offensive team. Which is exactly why they were a vulnerable defensive team. Fuhr, on average, faced more uncontested scoring chances than any Cup goalie this poster has ever seen, by a wide margin. His forwards were programmed to score (read: defense was an afterthought) and his D corp, outside of Paul Coffey and Kevin Lowe, were a group of large/tough, but relatively immobile, types. (Apologies to Oilers fans, but I'm trying to simplify this explanation. ;) )

    Grant Fuhr is the ultimate example of why one should not judge a goalie based on GAA and Sv % statistics, nor devalue his effort simply because he played with a good team. (Call it the "Marty Brodeur Syndome," if you like.) That is ultra-simplistic rationale, and is utterly wrong.

    Why was Fuhr "so good"? Because he stopped enough pucks to help his team lay claim to being one of the sport's true and few dynasties, that's why. Shorthand: all he did was win...and win....And, that is how goalies are judged by NHL GMs, coaches and fellow players.

    All the other crap is what consumes some fans.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2005
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

monitoring_string = "358c248ada348a047a4b9bb27a146148"