Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Stuy*, Apr 22, 2006.
Had they stayed together?
The last Dynasty...I say they could have pushed for 7.
I don't think you can really say if they all stayed together. Coffey was gone early. Some trades actually helped the Oilers to win the 1990 cup, like getting Murphy, Ranford, Gelinas, Graves. Still if Gretzky wasn't traded and Messier wasn't traded and if Kurri wasn't traded and never went back to Europe for a year. And if Anderson and Fuhr weren't shipped to Toronto.
The Oilers might have won 2 or 3 more cups or even one less cup. Though the 1989 flames were a very strong team. Would Edmonton intact have beat them? Maybe or Maybe not. Would a very different Edmonton team have won in 1990? Probably but who knows. Would Moog have been as great in goal as Ranford was? I would guess that they would have won. Then in 1991 and 1992 Edmonton probably would have been able to get to the finals. If they had they would have faced the Pittsburgh mini dynasty. I think that would have been so amazing to see. I would guess that Edmonton would split in those 2 years. In 1993 if the aging Oilers had faced the Habs in the final that would have been a great series. As Gretzky and the Kings faced them and lost a close series it isn't crazy to guess that the Oilers with a Messier in his prime could have given them a bit of a tougher series. Would the Oilers have beat the Habs? Coin Flip.
1993 in the playoffs was really Gretzky's last time of utter dominance and of him being clearly the best player in the world (with Lemieux). After the 1993 playoffs Gretzky slid into being merely among the best and never again displayed the dominance he previously had for 14 seasons. That is probably when the Oilers cup runs would have ended if the team was kept together. Anderson was aging, Fuhr and Moog and Kurri were less effective. Messier was still in his prome but starting to decline. Lowe and other Edmonton D-men and role players aside from Steve Smith were far past their primes.
So I would guess if the team was kept pretty much together the Oilers win in 84,85,87,88,90,91,93. That is 7 cups in 10 years. Though it is possible they could have won only 4 cups and missed in 1990. Or that they won 10 or even 11 cups from 84-95. No one will ever know.
For the most part, what ifs are useless but...
The Oil would likely have won in '89, '91, '93 and '94.
Even if you take away the '89 cup and give it to Calgary, the team was almost good enough in '91 and Edmonton south (LA) was a finalist in '93 and Edmonton east was a champion in '94. So, adding three more for a total of 8 is completely reasonable.
The Oilers had no business winning ANY cups much less 5. They took advantage of a weak conference and galloped unmolested to the finals every year while the East teams battered themselves silly. The St Louis Blues went to 3 straight Finals also, kid.
This is by far the weakest multiple cup winner in history. Perhaps of any Sports.
This is perhaps the weakest poster on any message board I have visited.
hmm, how do you figure? A team with Gretzky, Messier, Kurri, etc...
Just pay chooch no mind. Quietly put him on your ignore list and move on. His revisionist history (claims the Smythe was a weak division despite most people at that time touting the Smythe as the strongest division in hockey) is a perfect example. He tries to discredit the accomplishments of Gretzky and other Oilers through petty, irrelevant arguments.
I only saw his St. Louis argument because someone quoted his post. Reality is, when the Blues went to the Cup final three times, they were in there with the other five 1967 expansion teams. As stated before, the Smythe was regarded as the strongest division in hockey from about 1985 to 1991.
The Oilers are one of the top four dynasties ever, along with the late 50s Habs (likely the best) the 1976-1979 Habs and the 1980-1983 Islanders.
Are we talking if the Oilers from the first three Cups had stayed together, or if the Oilers from 1990 had stayed together? If the Oilers from 1984 to 1987 had stayed together, their potential was unlimited. When you look at how Gretzky, Messier, Kurri, Fuhr and Coffey continued to thrive well into their 30s, this team would have been a power through 1996. Also, they had Anderson and Lowe, and they had young guys like Tikannen coming up. That team could have won a total of seven or eight Cups.
They lost Coffey in 1987, but gained Craig Simpson. He scored 56 goals the year the Oilers won their fourth Cup, and finished tied for the playoff scoring lead in 1990. A clutch player who would have shredded the league for years if not for his bad back. Moog was sent to Boston for Bill Ranford that year. We all know about what Ranford did for the Oilers.
They traded Gretzky, McSorely and Krushylneski in 1988. The return can never match what Gretzky was worth, but they flipped Carson, the centrepiece of the return package, to Detroit for Klima, Graves and Murphy. Graves-Murphy-Gelinas comprised the Kid Line, and Klima, while inconsistent, scored a couple big goals in 1990. Tikannen, Ranford and Simpson continued their development into stars, and those were three of the most valuable players in the 1990 championship team. (I've long maintained that Tikannen was the most valuable player after Ranford). That team could have likely won two or three more Cups.
Kurri went to Europe for a year after the 1990 Cup run. Despite Kurri's absence, and injuries that plagued Messier the following year, they reached the conference final. The following year, they lost Messier, Smith, Anderson, Graves and Fuhr (gaining Nichols, Damphousse, Richardson and Manson) and still managed to get back to the conference finals. Murphy, Simpson, Gelinas, Tikannen and Lowe left in 1993, and that basically spelled the end of the dynasty.
Had the Oilers even kept together the team from 1991-92, that team could have won multiple Cups, health permitting, of course.
Of course they Oilers could have won a few more cups, and the proof is in the players they got rid of. Coffey helped the Penguins win the cup, Gretzky, Kurri, McSorley helped L.A. get to the Finals, Moog helped Boston get to the Finals, the New York Rangers won the cup thanks to Messier, Anderson, Graves, McTavish, Tikannen, Lowe so if you account for the cups that former Oilers helped other teams win and even just getting to the finals, then yes, if Edmonton kept most of those players, they would have continued winning.
Youre the Don Cherry of logic. Comparing the Oilers to the 50's or 70's Habs... Based on what ..the equal defences?
You must have been impressed by the scoring record versus Chicago in the playoffs. Boy they made the great Bannerman look bad...
They made the big bad Burin and Flyer teams from the tough East look pretty bad too...
Just a question why do they lose in 92? 93 would've been a finals to remember. Roy at his best with one of the best defensive players of the era vs the Oilers firepower.
Of course this is impossible to know. The thing about this team is that they all grew up as players together and still had long careers ahead of them.
Messier won another cup in 94, Gretzky made another final in 93, the team without Gretzky won it in 90 and made the conference finals in 91, Coffey won a cup with the Penguins, Lowe won a cup with the Rangers in 94.
The OTHER question is how good could the trades of aging Oilers been if they were allowed to get equal value back? I mean where would the team be today?
Now if money's no object obviously most of the guys retire with the team, but you know some of the pieces could be dealt as they get older to try and rebuild the squad.
But in my view, without losing any pieces due to financial realities, you can be a competative team at least until 1995-96, which is about the time the careers of Kurri, Anderson, Coffey and Lowe start to unravel.
But Gretzky, Messier and Fuhr are still very good for 2 seasons after that.
The year Gretzky retired Fuhr dropped below 40 games started and down to an .892 save percentage, and then completely fell off the map in Calgary the next year.
So, I think the last chance at a cup is probably 95-96.
Meaning they have 5 Cups in 8 years of being competative for the cup and in their primes... and then 6 more chances as they age. I'd say adding 2-3 to the total is not at all unrealitic.
I was only 8 years old when the Flames won their Stanley Cup, but boy 1989 must have been an awful year for more aware Oilers fans. Lose Gretz, have him break the points record in a Kings uniform, lose to Gretz in the playoffs, and the FLAMES win the Stanley Cup.
Damm it shawnmullin it took this long to forget now you reminded me again. Back to the bottle.
I think the many believe the Oilers and Pens would have split the 91 and 92 cups and the 92 version of the Pens were a better version,would have been a great Stanley cup finals...very tough to give and edge to anyone
Coffey??? which team would he been on
the 92 Pens I believe would have the offensive edge....But the Oilers defensmen were very underated(Lowe,Smith,Huddy,Gregg,Muni) and give the Oilers the edge on defensive depth with goaltending being very close but the experience of Fuhr in big games gives the Oilers a slight edge
Messier = Francis?
My favourite player of all time IS MESSIER...always wore #11 playing any sport..... maybe should not of used equal signs but just saying the Pens had a great # 2 center as well and some players that could actually match up well with the Great offense of the OILERS....Francis was no slouch and if Messier played second fiddle to Gretzky his entire carear he may not be reconized as the great leadefr he is today
It's an unanswerable question, but I don't think they would have won. I'm not even sure they would have won in 1990 if the Gretzky trade wasn't made. This is not a knock on the Oilers team, which was great, but winning over and over again takes a lot out of a team mentally. Read Dryden's book, The Game on this topic. Inevitably, players need new and different challenges. Messier needed to be the Alpha Dog at some point.
This like the thread about if Lemieux would`ve won every single scoring title if he never got injured. You`re assuming these guys won`t have slumps or off-years; it`s not realistic.
By the way, the Rangers Cup in `94 was primarily because of Leetch and Richter. Messier was a huge factor, but the contributions of the other ex-Oilers on that team have been greatly exaggerated.
Edit: Can`t believe I wasted my 1,000th post on this.
Hey, if we weren't a Base-10 society, you wouldn't have even cared.
I can't believe I have 923 more posts than you do. I need a new hobby.
I am just trying to be conservative to appease doubters. My honest belief is that they would have won 10 or 11 cups. I said 8 to not sound too outlandish.
It was a lot more than the Gretzky trade. Yes, they turned Carson into Klima, who scored the OT winner vs. Boston in Game 1, and they got Murphy and Graves, who provided a spark with Gelinas (also acquired in the Gretzky trade) on the Kid Line. They still had the veterans left over from the first four Cups, like Messier, Kurri, Anderson, Lowe, Huddy and Randy Gregg. (Grant Fuhr, the other player from the first four Cups, didn't play a minute).
But to me, the real reason they won was the play of three players who were just entering their prime. Ranford played the best hockey of his career and won the Conn Smythe. Craig Simpson was an abrasive all-round force who tied for the playoff scoring lead. Tikannen was fantastic, shutting down Gretzky, Savard and Hawerchuk in the first three round, and Craig Janney in the Cup final. He also scored at over a point per game clip.
Kurri = Mullen?
One thing people aren`t mentioning:
Gretzky, Messier, Kurri in their 20s > Gretzky, Messier, Kurri in their 30s.
The Isles kept most of their players from their dynasty; look what happened to them.
Don't disagree with any of this. I'm not necessarily talking about the return on the Gretzky trade, but rather the trade allowing players to take on more significant roles than they otherwise would have had they still had the league's most dominant offensive player. I think taking on those roles gave them new challenges that they relished, to some extent, in living up to. I think the same thing applies to Messier's tenure in New York.