The greatest team ever assembled

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Marcus-74, Jun 5, 2006.

  1. Marcus-74

    Marcus-74 Registered User

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    What is the best team (national team representing a certain country) that there has ever been? Not JUST on paper, but also on the ice as well. Here is my top 4:

    1. The Soviets ´79

    This is of course the team which triumphed in the Challenge Cup, but its not the only proof of their greatness. In the 1978-79 season their only loss was that 4-2 L to NHL All Stars and in the ´78 Izvestia tournament Czechoslovakia held them to a 3-3 tie and those two blots were certainly avenged (in the ´79 WCs silver medallists Czechs were beaten by scores of 11-1 and 6-1!).
    I think that around this time the Soviets finally had a team which had four really strong lines and the young new defensemen like Bilyaletnidov, Babinov and of course Fetisov had brought much needed reliability in their own end. Okay, so they didn´t win, say, a Canada Cup, but there´s nothing suggesting to me that they wouldn´t have (if it had been held around this time).
    KEY PLAYERS: Mikhailov, Petrov, Kharlamov, Balderis, Kapustin, Maltsev, Fetisov, Tretiak, Vasiliev, Makarov...

    2. Soviets ´81

    It´s only a couple years later, but this was different team than the one of ´79. After Lake Placid Tikhonov was forced to make some changes and, well, it worked! The Soviets were virtually unbeatable in the early 80s.
    The big thing about them (along with their obvious skill) was their youth; many of the key players were under 25 years old...
    Their crowning achievement was of course that ´81 Canada Cup and annihilation of Team Canada in the final. The team was young, hungry and ridiculously talented and Tretiak was probably giving his best goaltending at this time. How could you beat that?
    KEY PLAYERS: Green Unit, Shepelev, Shalimov, Kapustin, Khomutov, Tretiak...

    3. Team Canada ´76

    On paper, they might be the best team ever assembled (certainly on defense!), but after seeing all their games (except vs. Finland) in the ´76 Canada Cup, I´m still not convinced that they would have beaten those aforementioned Soviet teams, especially best of 3.
    Still, it´s the best Canadian team ever IMO and a brilliant blend of talent; from great work horses like Clarke, Gainey and Mcdonald to ultra-exciting skillsters like Perreault, Lafleur and of course Bobby Orr in his so called last hurrah. And older guys like Hull and Esposito were still pretty useful, on power play at least...
    However, I think that many players should have raised their level of play in order to beat those Soviet teams. This Team Canada´s potential was unlimited, but they just didn´t give that sort of performance that would make them greatest team ever IMO. Even the 6-0 blowout of Czechoslovakia in the first final seemed to be more of a case of Czechs playing a lacklustre game than anything else.
    KEY PLAYERS: Perreault, Orr, Potvin, Clarke, Vachon, Hull, Robinson, Sittler, Esposito...

    4. Team Canada ´87

    A team heavily dependent on Gretzky and Lemieux, of course. I think they´re maybe the Canadian team who played the best as a team, especially on power plays. Just compare their passing plays to those of the ´72 team, for instance, and it´s like from another planet!
    However, I think that the team was slightly too unbalanced to be called the greatest ever. They beat the Soviets in the Canada Cup finals by the slightest of margins and it was not quite the Soviet team of ´79 or ´81. Many also feel that the refereeing was very biased in those finals...
    Still, the team had without a shadow of a doubt the best combo in hockey ever (guess who!) and lots of other great players...
    KEY PLAYERS: Gretzky, Lemieux, Messier, Coffey, Fuhr, Bourque, Gartner, Hawerchuk, Gretzky, Lemieux ;) ...

    Others:

    Team Canada ´02
    - Won the Olympic gold

    Czechs ´98
    - ditto

    Team Canada ´72
    - Won the Summit Series, but the best team ever? NO WAY!
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2006
  2. vcx*

    vcx* Guest

    2005-06 Boston Bruins...
     
  3. Marcus-74

    Marcus-74 Registered User

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    You don´t wanna wait to get some perspective on the matter? :D Well, who knows, maybe they are! :dunno:

    Anyway, I should have been a bit clearer. I meant INTERNATIONAL teams... list would be way too long otherwise. But of course you can vote whatever you will, I guess...
     
  4. vcx*

    vcx* Guest

    Hey the owner said himself it was the best Bruins team assembled. Had to point it out.


    Ok well best team out of that list? Since i am not old enough for the older teams, i'll go with the '87 Canada team & the 98 Czech team in a tie.
     
  5. Ogopogo*

    Ogopogo* Guest

    76-77 Canadiens
     
    Last edited by moderator : Jun 5, 2006
  6. XploD

    XploD Registered User

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    The Red Machine without a doubt.
     
  7. Chili

    Chili Registered User

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    The 1976-77 Habs were the best offensive and defensive team in the regular season and cruised through three rounds in the playoffs.

    Internationally, the Canadian 1976 Canada Cup team was awesome. Imagine a defense with Orr, Potvin, Robinson, Savard & Lapointe and many Hall of Fame forwards.
     
  8. kovy1335

    kovy1335 Registered User

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    The 92-93 regular-season Penguins:

    Presidents Trophy with 56 wins and 119 pts.
    Ended season with 17 straight wins.

    Key players:
    Mario lemieux 160 pts, 69 goals
    Kevin Stevens 111 pts, 55 goals
    Rick Tocchet 109 pts, 48 goals
    Ron Francis 100 pts, 76 assists
    Jaromir Jagr 94 pts, 34 goals
    Larry Murphy 85 pts, 63 assists
    Joe Mullen 70 pts, 33 goals
    Shawn McEachern 61 pts

    Defense anchored by the two Samuelssons and Murphy

    Tom Barrasso - 43 wins in 63 games, 4 SO
    Kenny Wregget pulled out 13 wins as the consummate back-up
     
  9. Talent Analyst

    Talent Analyst Registered User

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    Team Canada ´87
     
  10. Canucks5551

    Canucks5551 Registered User

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    Team Canada '87. Gretzky and Lemieux together, enough said.
     
  11. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    TeamCanada 87. NHL team..... The 1987 Edmonton Oilers.
     
  12. GKJ

    GKJ Global Moderator

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    I will take any team with Gretzky, Bourque, Coffey AND Lemieux on it
     
  13. God Bless Canada

    God Bless Canada Registered User

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    Not even close. They did not win the Cup, thus they do not even merit a passing thought. The 1991 and 1992 Penguins were better teams, but aren't the best teams ever assembled.
     
  14. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    What if it is Keith Gretzky, Phil Bourque and Jocelyn Lemieux? Plus Paul Coffey
     
  15. kovy1335

    kovy1335 Registered User

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    Okay, I did say the REGULAR SEASON 92-93 Pens, but anyway I think you are dead wrong. That team had by far the most and best talent of any Penguins teams.

    How many teams win three straight anyway? Most of the players are the same ones who won the cup a year earlier.
     
  16. God Bless Canada

    God Bless Canada Registered User

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    Talent? So what? It's how you play as a team during the most important hockey of the year that counts. Reality is the Penguins in 1993 did not get the job done. They did in 1991 and 1992. Thus the Penguins from 1991 and 1992 were the better team.
     
  17. canucksfan

    canucksfan Registered User

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    I don't understand why people are voting for the 87 Team Canada over the 76 Team Canada. If you compare the two teams the 76 team is better. Goaltending is pretty even. Vachon played extremely well as did Fuhr. Defence isn't even close. The 76 defence was much better than the 87 team. They had better depth and they had more top end talent than the 87 team. Even though the 87 team had Gretzky and Lemieux on it the 76 team had better forwards as well.
     
  18. Zine

    Zine Registered User

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    I agree, the '76 team was much better. The '87 squad tends to get vastly overrated -- mainly due to the excitement and heroics in that CC. In fact, the Soviet team they barely beat in the finals was one of the weaker 'A' teams the Soviets ever iced. The USSR had no depth at any position whatsoever.
    The '76 team was absolutely stacked top to bottom.
     
  19. Chili

    Chili Registered User

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    Agree. The way Vachon played in that tournament and with the team in front of him I would stack that team up against any I have seen.
     
  20. Brooklyndevil

    Brooklyndevil I live Hockey.

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    NY Islanders....5 consecutive Stanley Cup appearances and 19 consecutive playoff wins.
     
  21. kovy1335

    kovy1335 Registered User

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    That's in the playoffs, maybe. But there is no question the 92-93 pens were better in the regular season. And that's all I said in the first place.
     
  22. Psycho Papa Joe

    Psycho Papa Joe Porkchop Hoser

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    Nothing against Vachon and Watson, but if Dryden, Parent and Park had been available, this topic wouldn't be worthy of discussion.
     
  23. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    What surprises me about those Pens teams is how poorly (relatively) they were in the regular season. How could teams as hugely deep and talented as the 91 and 92 Pens only get like 90 points. Even though Mario missed 2/3 and 1/3 of each season it shouldn't have mattered that much with a team like that.

    I think that defensive depth hurt them the most. They really hada poor defence after the top 2 or 3 D-Men they had.
     
  24. Luigi Lemieux

    Luigi Lemieux Registered User

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    firewagon hockey with lots of defensive miscues. in '90-91 they won the patrick division even though they were the only team to allow 300+ goals. they allowed 300+ goals again in '92. they were scoring about 350 goals a season though. the 92-93 team really was the best team the pens ever had. they scored 370 goals and only allowed 270, but they couldn't get the job done.
     
  25. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    Defence was the biggest reason why the Oilers dynasty was better than the Pens cup runs. Obviously Lemieux's many injuries and medical issues were a huge factor but an even bigger one was the Oilers ability to play good defence. The Oilers defence was very underrated. They had good defence depth and could and did play pretty good team defence in the playoffs. They had top forwards and bottom forwards who were excellent defensively.

    That is the biggest reason for the difference. The Pens had a similar level of top forwards at least for 3 or 4 seasons but never had the depth and the defence the Oilers had.
     

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