Is Gordie Howe Overrated?

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Overrated, Jan 16, 2018.

  1. Howie Hodge

    Howie Hodge Supernatural Aneisthetist

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    And I don't see anyone arguing against Howe's greatness being a real hockey fan. Either that or they're so new to the sport that they over value analytics or advanced statistics to the n'th degree. That not being the case, they're simply out of touch with reality.

    I mean I never saw Joe Malone, Milt Schmidt, or Rocket Richard play live. But strictly based on people who's opinions I highly do respect, and accounts of said players, I would never call their greatness into question.
     
  2. ehhedler

    ehhedler Teuvo Teräväinen fanboy

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    How did they place? I’ve forgotten, though I think I participated in that project.

    The reason I would rank Bure over Kariya is partly because he had a much more nastier edge (kick on Tkachuk and elbow on Churla, for example) and wasn’t as easily bullied or intimidated.

    I think that’s a quite common opinion, actually. Lindros never felt as the smartest player around.
     
  3. Do or Die

    Do or Die Registered User

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    Watched Howe play for 15 years (nowhere near his prime). He was a lot of things.....except "overrated" in any way, shape or form.
     
  4. No Fun Shogun

    No Fun Shogun 34-38-61-10-13-15

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    Well, Howe is widely considered to be a top three NHL player of all time, if not the best NHL player of all time. If you made the argument that he was "merely" a top five player of all time, that'd mean you'd think he was overrated.
     
  5. GMR

    GMR Registered User

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    The only thing that was overrated about Howe is likely his reputation for the "Gordie Howe hat trick" and his overall fighting prowess. From what I've heard, he didn't have that many fights in his career and only had a handful of "Gordie Howe hat tricks".

    Everything else about Howe is simply remarkable. How many athletes of that era could have played well in their mid to late 30's or into their 40's? Howe played even beyond that age. Even nowadays I can't fathom a guy playing in the NHL at 52. He was a freak who was ahead of every era when it comes to durability. Being top 5 in scoring for that long is also something I can't see another player ever being able to reach.
     
  6. cupcrazyman

    cupcrazyman Chex Lemeneux

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    You don't get called Mr Hockey for nothing !
     
  7. The Panther

    The Panther Registered User

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    Howe's initial retirement was in spring 1971, just a few days after he turned 43. Heading into his last game (April 4, 1971) the Red Wings were 25 to 30 points out of a playoff spot and perhaps mailed it in, losing 6 - 0 to the Rangers in New York (Howe had 2 shots on goal and went -1). The previous game, his last-ever in front of the Detroit fans, he scored the Wings' only goal in a 4 - 1 loss to Chicago. (What a pity a game like that isn't available today to watch... or is it?)

    Turning age 43 just before retirement was certainly exceptional for then (or now), but not entirely unprecedented. Doug Harvey was 44 when he played his last games for St.Louis (albeit he had come out of retirement to do so) in 1968-69, Frank Boucher was 42 in his last season for the Rangers in 1943-44, and Allan Stanley and Tim Horton (both defencemen) were both about 42 when they played their last, c. 1969 and 1972, respectively. In fact, the very same season Howe retired, George Armstrong of the Leafs was also playing his last, at age 40 (close to 41, by the time the playoffs rolled around).

    So, Howe's longevity in itself wasn't totally unique. I think what makes his career span (the 'real' NHL career, that is, to 1971) so impressive is the incredibly high level of play he maintained from beginning to end, with no breaks or dips in the middle (like Harvey). Even in Howe's last season, 1970-71, when he felt like he was a bit washed-up, he still scored almost a point-per-game and had the best plus/minus of any Red Wing who played 40+ games! (He was only -2 on a 22-45-11 team, and when he was on the ice the Wings outscored the opposition). His next-to-last season, in which he turned 42, he led the whole team in scoring, went +23, and was a 1st-team All Star. (When he was on the ice, the Wings outscored the opposition 105 to 54.) The season before that, in which he turned 41, he scored 103 points (3rd NHL), went +45, and was a 1st-team All Star. He also led his team in scoring by a huge amount, had the 2nd-most shots and goal and the 2nd-best shooting percentage.

    I mean, you can't make that stuff up. The only near comparable among forwards I can think of is Jaromir Jagr in 2015-16 for Florida, in which he might have been the best player on his team while turning 44, and similarly for Jersey in 2013-14 (turned 42). But Jagr had big dips in production, such as his three years in Washington, his 2007-08 season, in which he was good but far from one of the top players in the League.

    Anyway, my point is that longevity in itself is nothing really to do with Howe's greatness.
     
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  8. jason1919spezza

    jason1919spezza Registered User

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    You forgot to put Crosby and Malkin there lol.

    People here are talking about how important a peak/prime is, yet they completely ignore the fact that Crosby failed to stay healthy at his peak (he did, stop damage-controlling it), while Malkin is a injury prone/inconsistent in production throughout his career.

    Yet many hfboards members (a.k.a Crosby/Malkin/Penguins fanatics) would put Crosby as a unanimous 5th best player, while Malkin is apparently in the top 30 all time, same tier with Messier/Clarke/Mikita/Esposito/Sakic/Yzerman, which I find it mind boggling lol.

    I’m not a Crosby/Malkin “hater” (although I do hate fanatics in hfboards that are clearly desperate in pushing Crosby/Malkin in a tier which they don’t deserve) by the way. I do see Crosby as a top 15-20 all time at the moment, with the possibility of becoming top 10 all time. The problem with him is that he failed to stay healthy at his peak, which is HUGE in judging a player’s overall career. He lost scoring titles to relatively weak competitors (Sedins and Benn), and his back-to-back Smythes are cringeworthy (I’m sorry but it is).
    Malkin is top 50-ish with Forsberg (I also don’t put Forsberg in the same tier as Sakic, and it’s fairly obvious as to why). But I do see Malkin passing Forsberg since he does have better health (despite Malkin being relatively injury prone). He is Forsberg+ to me.
    So I rank Crosby 15-20 all time with the potential for top 10, while Malkin is top 50-ish, with the potential of top 30-40, which is not outrageous IMO.

    I also feel like the NHL “softened” the League in terms of physicality in recent years, which is another reason why I don’t value Crosby/Malkin as high as a lot of fanatics do in hfboards. Crosby began to play at a relatively healthy rate after the game softened up, which is another negative for me. I understand that from a marketing and promotion point of view, Crosby plays a big role in the world of hockey. But the way the game changed drastically after his “concussed years” definitely helped him stay healthy and “pad” stats to his resume. None of the “big four” needed that. Gretzky and Orr literally changed the game, while Howe was able to adapt to it. Lemieux is a different story (which is why I put him comfortably last in the big four).

    I do find his post-concussion years as a benefit of the league making the game “softer” (this will probably trigger some fanatics lol), which is one of the many reasons as to why he shouldn’t even be in the discussion for top 5, let alone top 10 (as of now). Had he fulfilled his concussed years, he would be in my top 10, but he didn’t, which is the reality.

    I only give extra credit for missed games, when a player’s career was cut short due to war or politics. Which is why I give extra credit for guys like Hasek and Stastny. Crosby missing games due to concussion is his own fault. That’s just who he is as a player. “What if’s” means nothing for players who’s career was cut short due to injuries.
     
  9. ImporterExporter

    ImporterExporter I troll harder than Poppy

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    No need to bump a thread that was ridiculous to begin with and hadn't seen a post in nearly 3 months. How about a lock @Theokritos @quoipourquoi ?
     
  10. Mike Farkas

    Mike Farkas Grace Personified

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    You know it's going to be a quality post when "lol" is used three times and "fanatics" is used four times. There's no chance of bias leaking through there...

    Anyway, back to reality...Sid's got a lot of games played going for him...and he's still pretty prime...by my count, here's the most GP since 2005:

    1. Patrick Marleau 1143
    2. Alexander Ovechkin 1100
    3. Dustin Brown 1096
    4. Henrik Sedin 1086
    5. Tomas Plekanec 1083
    6. Antoine Vermette 1080
    7. Corey Perry 1071
    8. Jason Pominville 1067
    9. Eric Staal 1066
    10. Daniel Sedin 1062
    11. Scott Hartnell 1047
    12. Jason Chimera 1044
    13. Dion Phaneuf 1033
    14. Thomas Vanek 1028
    15. Jeff Carter 1021
    16. Sidney Crosby 1013
    17. Ryan Kesler 1010

    In all likelihood, he'll be third in playoff games over that stretch (one behind Evgeni Malkin, and still behind Chris Kunitz) in a couple weeks. Maybe those games are softer too? I wonder where Orr ranks with you...

    In any event, you still came to a reasonable conclusion about Crosby being in the top 20 but not top 5...which is plenty fair, and dare I say accurate...but you came about it in such a weird, backhanded way that it's just begging for scrutiny...
     
  11. Theokritos

    Theokritos Moderator

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    It's a legit topic for HOH. There is no need to lock it as long as everybody behave.

    But a post like the following is a bit off topic in a thread dedicated to Gordie Howe:

     
  12. ImporterExporter

    ImporterExporter I troll harder than Poppy

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    In theory it's a legit topic, but the presentation and arguments put forth make it seem like a massive troll job. I'm sorry, that's just my opinion.

    It's utterly disrepectful to Gordie Howe to put him and overrated in the same sentence. His dominance at the peak is only matched by a few other players and his longevity and consistancy will never be touched again. There is a reason why Wayne, Mario and Bobby O all call him the greatest of all time.

    Sorry, saw this back at the top of the boards and wondered why it needed to be revived.
     
  13. Theokritos

    Theokritos Moderator

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    That's an opinion you can have (and one you and others are undoubtedly capable of making a substantial case for), but it's not HFB policy. The policy of the forum is: If you want to discuss whether Gordie Howie is overrated or not, start a thread on the HOH board.
     
  14. Ceremony

    Ceremony _________________________ Sponsor

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    Bit odd for someone with "I troll harder than Poppy" under their avatar to be complaining about... trolling
     
  15. Canadiens1958

    Canadiens1958 Registered User

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    Because Sidney Crosby scored three goals in game 1 of the playoffs?:rolleyes:
     
  16. ImporterExporter

    ImporterExporter I troll harder than Poppy

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    It's a joke...from the political forums but I digress. You won't find me trolling or being anything but clear and concise around here.

    Starting this topic isn't the problem. It's the narrative and material.
     
  17. JackSlater

    JackSlater Registered User

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    Better to prove bad ideas wrong than to simply try to ban them and let them fester.
     
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  18. Thenameless

    Thenameless Registered User

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    I respect the humility of all three, but I would still draft any of them ahead of Gordie Howe.

    But, if rookie Gordie Howe from 1946 were somehow time traveled and "plopped" down into June of 2018, I still believe he would become the best player in the NHL. In the coming off-season, he would learn the wonders of the internet, the pitfalls of social media, modern diet and training techniques, and his natural mental/physical/psychological gifts would just take their course throughout his career. If the Habs won the lottery this coming June, I ain't thinking twice about taking him first over Dahlin. Plan the Parade in a few years.

    There are other things that make things easier for players of today that would help a guy like Howe become the best. Back then, they didn't make so much. I remember Howe being elated at receiving a Detroit Red Wings jacket as his signing bonus. Some players still had off-season jobs. Howe would making somewhere north of 10 million a year pretty quick, and so could dedicate all of his focus on hockey. A lot of travel in the day was by bus or train. Now teams fly. Again the ability to concentrate more on just pure hockey. Here, you have a guy that could score above the Crosby/McDavid level, while playing two-way hockey better than Bergeron/Kopitar (my opinion of course).
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2018
  19. vadim sharifijanov

    vadim sharifijanov ugh

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    this thread was started by a poster with the username "overrated," whose entire posting history (35 posts over two days) is in this thread.

    there are other discussions going on in this thread that may be worth having, but i don't think anyone needs to waste their time responding to the OP.
     
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  20. Killion

    Killion Global Moderator

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    Precisely. And... changed title to "Is Gordie Howe Overrated"?..... Carry on.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2018
  21. Jim MacDonald

    Jim MacDonald Registered User

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    Sorry Overrated, without even getting into the numbers, I don't think you get a nickname of "Mr. Hockey" without being considered either the best or one of the best of your profession. Howe's chosen profession was professional hockey, he gets that nickname, that's pretty much a "drop the mic and walk of the stage."
     
  22. Killion

    Killion Global Moderator

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    ... unhuh.... well Jim.....you best pick that mic up & head back out onto the stage because I paid for a full show & I demand to gets my moneys' worth, and when it comes to playing the role of Devils Advocate.... because, see, here's the deal with Gordie Howe, "Mr. Hockey" Councilor.... his peak-prime stats are mortal. Hewman. Now look at Orr's, Gretzkys's & Lemieux's.... See what I'm sayin?...

    He wasnt "light years" beyond the rest of the pack the way those 3 guys were, Gordie wasnt untouchable, entirely mortal & if your a younger person, never saw him play, you'll look at those stats during his peak years & you'll prolly go "meh.. whats the big deal with this guy? What makes him a Sacred Cow? Interchangeable Top 4? Dont think so".....

    But ok, lets say you then source out all the game footage you can find, get your hands on from the 50's, early 60's..... You watch Gordie intently.... and as you watch, you keep waiting to see that "W:eek:W"! moment, like, if he's called "Mr.Hockey" & people rave about him, Top 4 Player All Time, "why then am I not seeing it? Oh, he's good alright, but he aint jerking me outta my seat. Not spilling my drink & popcorn. Mr. Hockey there should be blowing my mind & instead... limpid... looks pretty damn normal-average to everyone else out there".....

    What do you say to this younger person who didnt see Gordie Howe play live & in person nor on televsion, wasnt even born until long after Howe had retired.... that he earned that title because for app 10yrs he was "one of the top players in the NHL"... and...... "longevity"?.... Key words.... "one of".....and ........ "longevity". You have a tough sell on your hands Councilor; convincing a jury of 20, 30, 40 & even 50 somethings in this day & age that Gordie Howe belongs in the Top 4 All Time, even Top 5....

    I saw Gordie play, didnt see his peak, tail end late 50's through the 60's and I can tell you quite honestly, he didnt do a whole lot for me. Good player, well rounded, but he didnt do anything others werent doing & some better. He sure as shootin wasnt a Rocket or Golden Jet, not even a Big Jean or Big M yanking people clean out of their seats every time they touched the puck. Gretzkys' younger than I am, and I have no idea what Waynes talking about, claiming Howes the Greatest Ever. How in Hell would Wayne Gretzky know that when he wasnt even around to watch Gordie during his prime?... Answer?... Because he was told that by his father, other adults, Wayne met Gordie as a child.... famous photo of the two... from these failing hands... the child prodigy & Mr. Hockey.... quite the moment, sweet... Jesus wept... what about Hull & Orr, Perrault & Lafluer?..... just a bunch of no name inbetweenies?

    So what gives? Why shouldnt people ask questions, not just accept that "Gordies the Greatest, Mr. Hockey, a God, Top 4 for sure"... Not everyone accepts what their elders tell them like Wayne Gretzky. Some arent quite so obedient, respectful, accepting... Some have a mind of their own & make it up for themselves, saw Hull, Orr, Lafleur & Perrault, Gretzky, Kurri & Coffey, Mario, Bure'.... certainly theyve seen guys like Crosby, Ovechkin, McDavid.... all players capable of appearing Superhuman, sublime, absolute artists... they have a hard time understanding Howes elevation, deification... stats while excellent during peak not totally runaway, footage theyve watched not exactly overwhelming.... So yes, yes Councilor; you do indeed have your work cut out for you. So pick up the mic where you dropped it, lets see whatcha got.

    :popcorn:
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
  23. Killion

    Killion Global Moderator

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    .... Ninteen Hunnert n' Forty Eight... All Star Game... only the 2nd in League history, Gordie all of 20 years old.... Toronto vs Detroit..... and what does "Mr. Hockey" do?..... gets into it with one of the Gold Dust Twins, Badass Defenceman Gus Mortson.... In an All Star Game.... So bad, that rather than send the two off to share the Penalty Box, which were shared back then, the officials sent them to their respective benches to serve Majors & called in the Cops to stand guard, watch over the two miscreants who were still beaking off & shooting daggers at one another & had they put them into the same play pen of a Penalty Box..... Who does this?

    ... Nineteen Hunnert n' Fifty... a mere 2 years after the ASG Episode... the then 22yr old Gordie Howe, incensed with Leaf Ted Kennedy, lines him up against the boards & charges him head first, Flying Wallenda move, PK Subban, Airborne... Kennedy stepping out of the way at the last second resulting in a near fatal collision between the Boards & Mr. Hockey's head & face. Broken nose, cheekbone, scratched eyeball, serious serious brain contusion so bad his Mother was called in... Very close shave.... When asked "why", suggested Ted Kennedy had earlier Head Butted him, seeking revenge, blood... but upon review, no evidence, no proof... Ted Kennedy not someone even remotely familiar with the Glaswegian Handshake.... Again, I ask you, who does this?

    Look, Gordie Howe was heavily penalized & by the standards of any day during his peak years, a Dirty Player. Thats a fact. His main rival to League Superstar Title on the other hand, Maurice Richard.... while no Saint, nowhere near the same Sinner and when The Rocket corralled the puck, 15,000 people left their seats... so even during Gordie Howes peak-prime for several years as the older Richards career wound down for my money, while not as complete a player as Howe, much more dynamic, exciting, explosive....

    The Rocket retired & then came Bobby Hull eclipsing both Howe & Richard, then came Bobby Orr and by then Gordie Howe was well on to his way to his first Retirement... the Red Wings & Gordie's best before date long since passed, the Booze Cruz that was Bruce Norris lost at sea for over 20yrs until finally, the club sold to Mike Ilitch in 1982. Gordies WHA years, triumphant return with Hartford all well documented, nothing outstanding, astonishing yes in that he was able to compete & did acquit himself well vs guys less than half his age but beyond that?...
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
  24. psycat

    psycat Registered User

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    No I dont believe Gordie is overrated. Hasek on the other hand is underrated and probably the player with the best case for making it a "Big 5". But he is not all that close either to be fair.

    Overrated players would be like-

    Crosby
    Niedermayer
    Forsberg
    Fedorov (maybe most of all)
    Harvey

    etc
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
  25. Sadekuuro

    Sadekuuro Registered User

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    You say that like it's a bad thing :laugh: Sounds more entertaining than any All-Star Game I've ever seen.
     
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