Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Puckgenius*, Apr 10, 2011.
Who was better in their prime? Sakic for me but its close.
Fedorov had the better absolute peak (as in one single season), but Sakic's prime was longer and more consistently combined great regular seasons and playoffs (whereas a lot of Fedorov's best playoff years came with good but not amazing regular seasons). So it depends on how you interpret the question but I'd lean towards Sakic.
Joe Sakic in a landslide. Fedorov was really only played to a level comparable to Sakic's through 1990/91-1997/98, a span of 8 seasons. Joe Sakic didn't understand the meaning of a "downseason", he played consistently amazing through all of his 20 seasons in the NHL.
Agreed - at his absolute best there are few better than Fedorov, but Sakic quickly overtakes him with years of superior results.
I'll take Sakic 8/10 times over Fedorov.
Fedorov only has a couple years (1994, 1996) where he'd have been thought of as a top 10 player. His best season is 1994 while Sakic's is 2001. Having seen both I take Sakic's for sure. Not to mention Sakic maintained his prime for a huge chunk of his career while Fedorov later became a player who was so-so in the regular season but someone you could count on in the postseason. Sakic was great on both counts.
Joe Sakic for me, and its a pretty easy decision. Sakic was a far more consistent high-level performer. Everything that Federov is praised for, two-way play and playoff scoring, Sakic could do, too, plus more.
Not to get this off-topic, but there are a few late-90s stars that I feel get significantly overrated on HFBoards, and Federov is one of them.
Sakic in a walk. Fedorov was better for about 10 minutes
Sakic obviously wins this because his career is simply overwhelming. But at the same time, Fedorov is one of the few players whose playoff career can stack up legitimately with that of Sakic. I don't think people give Fedorov enough credit for just how dominant he was in the playoffs. If he had not played under Scotty Bowman, I would wager that his playoff numbers would be equal to those of Sakic and/or Forsberg. Bowman trusted Fedorov like few other players he ever coached.
That's what I said about Fedorov in a Datsyuk vs. Fedorov thread a few days ago. He may not be Sakic, but he was Detroit's go-to guy for many years. Bowman considered Fedorov so vital to the Wings that he rewarded him for playing the Bowman way. The deal for Fetisov, one of Fedorov's idols, was one of those rewards. According to Bowman, Fedorov almost jumped through the roof of the team plane when he told him about it.
Agree with everything you say, BOG. Sakic wins this because his prime was so much longer, not because he peaked higher.
Fully agree with BOG and Devil here, Sakic's longevity trumps Fedorov here.
Sakic for me. Few people could match Sakic's 2000-2002 brief run as the best player in the world. Winning the Hart Trophy and Olympic MVP and an argument could have been made for the Con Smyth. Federov was good, Sakic was great. Plus his 1996 Playoffs is one of the greatest playoffs in the history of the NHL. 18 goals 3rd highest total ever.
Sakic, because he has one of the longest primes that I can recall. Fedorov might have the better single year peak tho.
IMO Sakics 2001 Hart trophy season > Feddys 94 Hart season. Federov had 2 more points but Sakic led his team to the Cup as well.
Sakic did it in a lower scoring era too.
Right, but Fedorov's prime ended in 1998 with his holdout.
In his prime he was scoring at the same pace as Joe (better some years, worse some years) and was far superior in the defensive aspect of the game.
Thus, Fedorov by a large margin for me.
I disagree. While Sakic did get a Cup in his best season, Federov's was quite simply the greatest 2-way season I have ever seen from a player. It is not an exageration that he could do almost everything as good as any other player in the league. Sakic has the better "prime" as it lasted far longer, but Federov in 94 was something else.
Im not well placed of saying this but your choice is pretty damn easy since your a Wings fan
Players since 1980 to Captain a team to a Cup victory and win the Hart Trophy in the same season:
I'm on the Sakic side of this debate, but you're getting pretty specific there.
Players since 5000 BC to win the Hart and Selke in the same year and then at some point nail Anna Kournikova:
Fair enough. Just wanted to point out how hard it is to be the best player during the season and also win the Stanley Cup. Most Hart Trophy winners don't end up winning a cup that year.
Absolutely true, no doubt. This seems to go for teams as well as players. So often a team doesn't win the Cup after their best regular season.
And the Wings did somehow manage to lose to the Sharks in 1994. I don't remember much of that series, except the surprising result (and then those same Sharks scaring the hell out of my Leafs the next round). Fedorov led that series in scoring, although I couldn't comment on how he actually played. An injured Yzerman and a rookie goalie probably didn't help their cause. Looking over the box scores, Irbe had surprisingly poor stats during that series for the Sharks, outside of game 7. I always figured he must have stolen that series. Huh. On the other hand, Osgood's 14 save performance in game 7 isn't too inspiring either. Detroit outscored San Jose 27-21 in that series and lost. The Wings were still in full playoff choke mode at that point. Looking back now, I wish I would have watched more.
it's hard not to be impressed with fedorov's peak, especially his physical skills. his skating ability, his slapshot, his incredible two-way play, he had all the tools and one hell of a toolbox.
but sakic, while less flashy-- but still a very exciting player to watch-- had that out of this world wrist shot, great playmaker, amazing vision, and a very good two-way game of his own. the consistency and how he always gave 100% puts him over the top.
peak vs. peak, joe was more understated but the results speak for themselves: hart trophy, stanley cup, olympic gold, olympic MVP, 2nd in goals and points, 1st in playoff goals and points. i don't think i'll ever see a year quite like fedorov in '94, but sakic in '01 was at least as good.
I think we all agree on the answer to this question. But still, Fedorov was the type of player that may never come around again. He was spectacular in every facet of the game, albeit tailing off in the regular season after the offer sheet in 98.
Remember this? Game 7. I know it's an aging Wayne, but it's hard to not think about what would have happened if Gretzky had been able to get the puck to Hull, or even just be in a position to make a play (shoot or pass). It's not just about the back-checking, it's the circumstances and the situation. Not only was Fedorov on the other side of the ice after taking the shot, but even when he somehow circled to the puck side, he was also skating back towards Gretzky, who was already headed up ice. When he saw the shot blocked, he stopped and headed the other direction instantly. It's a little ridiculous. The guy began wearing an "A" for Scotty Bowman at age 25. Not just any guy, but a 25 year old Russian. That's how you know he was special. I mean, in 2002, on a team with 7 other HOF skaters (F or D), Fedorov was third on the Wings, behind Lidstrom and Chelios, in in ice time during the playoffs. Sakic is Sakic. But Fedorov stands up to just about every other center from that era.
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