Scott Stevens or Chris Chelios?

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Passchendaele, Mar 14, 2011.

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  1. Passchendaele

    Passchendaele Registered User

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    I am somehow intrigued by the fact that they had very similar careers.

    -Similar games and points totals.
    -Both won three cups.
    -Both were important parts of Stanley Cup winners.
    -Both were offensively gifted in their first years in the NHL, then at some point in their 30s, became more of a stay-at-home dman.

    But, something should basically give Chelios the edge; Three Norrises Vs. none for Stevens.

    Your pick?
     
  2. Epsilon

    Epsilon #basta

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    Chelios for me wins this decisively on:

    -peak: not just the 3 Norris trophies to 0, but I'd take his 92-93 season over any of Stevens', and he's got a couple of other years that are about as good as Stevens' best.

    -prime: his prime was longer than Stevens' and more consistent, especially in terms of offense/defense balance.

    -longevity: I think this one goes without saying, but in particular he was still one of the league's best defensemen in 01-02, in his 40s.

    Stevens makes up some ground with what I feel is a superior playoff record, but Chelios is no slouch there at all, and it's arguable his 92 playoffs is as good or better as Stevens' 95 or 00 performances.
     
  3. JackSlater

    JackSlater Registered User

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    Chelios was better able to combine offence and defence, so I would go with him. Stevens had higher offensive and defensive peaks. Both had a long period as great players.
     
  4. CHGoalie27

    CHGoalie27 GWAAARRRRRRR

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    Scott Stevens, a goalie's all time best friend.

    I'll take Scott Stevens in front of me over anyone ever.
     
  5. John Flyers Fan

    John Flyers Fan Registered User

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    Chelios

    Stevens had to give up his very good offensive game to become an elite defender.

    Chelios was able to combine both.
     
  6. begbeee

    begbeee Registered User

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    There are some guys like Chelios, but neither like Stevens.
     
  7. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    Really? Who was like Chelios?

    Chelios was dirtier, more emotional, and more unpredicatable. This could be good and bad. But Chelios could OFFENSIVELY take over a game and win it when he needed to, in his prime. Stevens did not do that.

    The good for Stevens is that he was not unpredictable and was incredibly consistent, would never do anything that could hurt you.

    The Original Post said they were similar but only in raw stats at the end of their careers. And it said that Chelios did not have offence, that was only when he was past 40 that he lost his offence.

    I would easily take Chelios over Stevens. Chelios was just more, he was the leader and heart of those teams in Chicago. And the offensive catalyst, and the defensive heart, and the dirty, mean, vicious feared player that everyone wanted to avoid. All at the same time. And he was that in Montreal and Detroit too, maybe to a lesser degree.

    If I had a superb, well coached team Stevens might almost have as much impact as Chelios. And he was in that position. I think you could take Chelios and throw him on ANY team and he is going to have this massive impact on the Win-loss record.

    So I take Chelios EASILY over Stevens. If I think of all of the best HHOF D-Men over the same generation, Bourque, Coffey, MacInnis, Chelios, Leetch, Pronger, Stevens, Murphy, Lidstrom, Langway...

    The only ones I take over Chelios are Bourque (easily) and Lidstrom (in some circumstances I might want Chelios over him). Chelios at his best was a true force of nature on the ice. He dominated an entire team and made it his own. He was one mean, intense and talented SOB.

    I remember at the end of Chelios's career. The Wings are facing the Ducks in the playoffs. About to be eliminated. They are down I think 2 goals, it is the third period maybe 4 or 5 minutes left. The Wings have put Datsyuk and Zetterberg together, recently scored and have insane momentum and pressure going so the game is not out of reach.

    Chelios who had been a healthy scratch in the playoffs and end of the season at times is playing and playing well do to injuries. He draws a penalty by taking a guys stick, putting it under his arm and making it look like he is being hooked. Chelios is like the slowest player in the league by this time, no one is hooking him to slow him down! So he draws the PP.

    The Wings end up losing the series and Chelios does not go and shake hands with the Ducks he goes to the locker room. Not good sportsmanship. Not something I would want all of my players to do. But Chelios HAD TO. He was SO INTENSE. He was playing brilliantly, (as he could he was like 45 or 46 or something).

    That is my lasting memory of Chelios. A warrior who would do ANYTHING to win or get an advantage. Who was that intense and cared that much.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2011
  8. Reds4Life

    Reds4Life Registered User

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    Chelios easily. Stevens was good, but Chelios is just on another level.
     
  9. begbeee

    begbeee Registered User

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    Really.

    Who was like him? Pronger is similar type of defensman from current players. And now is your turn - name similar D like Stevens from current players... Or Orr from past. Obviously Orr made everything on higher level than Chelios, but Stevens was arguably better than Orr in his own zone.

    Scott Stevens was in second half of his career most feared man in history, I mean during a play in own zone. Forwards think of him first, before they stepped into zone. Similar to Hasek. And if you can get yourself into enemy´s head before he even do something, you are one of the very best.
     
  10. Psycho Papa Joe

    Psycho Papa Joe Porkchop Hoser

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    Only once in his career did Stevens put it all together in a totally complete package, 1994, and even then he still didn't win the Norris. Chelios has about 4 or 5 seasons at that level. Other than Potvin and Robinson, I've never seen such a complete package in a d-man for such a long period of time.

    Norris Trophies - 3-0 Chelios
    Conn Smythes - 1-0 Stevens
    1st Team All-Stars - 5-2 Chelios
    2nd Team All-Stars - 3-2 Stevens
    Career Numbers - Really too close to call (Chelios with more pts, but Stevens with the +/- edge)
    Playoff Numbers - Chelios

    Game, set, match, Chelios.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2011
  11. RorschachWJK

    RorschachWJK Registered User

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    There's absolutely nothing admirable in not shaking hands with the opponent, intense or not. No further comments on that.

    As to the bolded sentence, nothing admirable there either, because taken to extremes that means Clarke chopping Kharlamov's ankle and other cowardly acts like that. If you can't win by playing then you should be man enough to take the defeat and get ready for the next battle. A glorified sore loser, that's what it is, not 'a warrior who would do anything to win'.

    That said, It's hard to choose from these two. Attitudes aside, they're both great players of the game.
     
  12. tony d

    tony d Registered User Sponsor

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    Both are top 20-defensemen of all time but the answer to this is Chelios.
     
  13. CHGoalie27

    CHGoalie27 GWAAARRRRRRR

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    Might you be the only other goalie in here?
     
  14. revolverjgw

    revolverjgw Registered User

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    Chelios, easy. Not buy a HUGE margin, but a clear one. For a long time he was simultaneously elite offensively and defensively.
     
  15. Dark Shadows

    Dark Shadows Registered User

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    Agreed.
     
  16. TheMoreYouKnow

    TheMoreYouKnow Registered User

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    It's Chelios for me. I just think of him as a more complete D-man, offense, defense, playoffs, regular season. The gap isn't huge but it's there in my mind.
     
  17. vadim sharifijanov

    vadim sharifijanov ugh

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    this is chelios, all day, everyday.

    i think the "was elite defensively and offensively at the same time" is kind of a red herring though. at the end of the day, the difference is that chelios did more little things out there, and was better at them. which is to say that he plain affected the game more at his best, and he did it on every inch of the ice. he was as good defensively as anyone of his generation, moved the puck at a high level, was very good on the powerplay, the dirtiness and chippiness can't be overlooked, and he just wore you down. you knew this guy wouldn't stop coming at you, no matter how long the game or series went on and how much punishment you dished back. like bourque, he was a freak of nature and could play 45 minutes in a game like it was nothing. factor in the physical demands of the game cheli played and the fact that he was undersized for his position even in the 80s, and his stamina is just mind-blowing.

    cam neely knows this and must have been happier than anyone when the savard trade was announced. and at 40 years old, cheli was still out there, completely throwing a monster of a man in bertuzzi off his game. i would have loved to see him take on lindros in a seven game series. or if chicago hadn't been stymied by the north stars in '91, messier vs. chelios would have been epic.

    this format of this thread kind of demands it, but i refuse to discredit scott stevens, who i respect as much as any player of that generation. i don't even have to go into the ways he could affect a game, and what an unbelievable difference he made on those devils teams. you either took the extra second to know where stevens was on the ice, or you went to the hospital. still, even with how great he was at clearing the crease, how much he battled, the cross checks, how great he could be when he had to dedicate himself to shutting down one guy, there was something about how chelios just wouldn't stop that to me made him a degree more effective defensively. stevens was big, strong, and mean. chelios was mean, annoying, a cheap batard that you wanted to pay back, and he would inevitably outlast you. plus, his on-ice intelligence was as high as anyone, which allowed him to play recklessly and be everywhere on the ice, and he could outscore you. psychologically, you face chelios, especially in a playoff series, and it's demoralizing. he will always win.

    my only reservation in this comparison is chelios' leadership. by all accounts, he was a blood and guts leader of men. his recklessness and determination was infectious, and knowing he was on your team must have allowed his teammates to concentrate on the things they needed to do. but he also captained a few teams that had character issues. i don't think scott stevens '92 and on would have put up with the bs that allegedly occured in the locker rooms in montreal, chicago, and team USA in '98. but that might also just be the difference between playing with crazy ego-maniacs like roy, corson, roenick, belfour, tkachuk, etc. and playing with team-first guys like daneyko, brodeur, and niedermayer. still, i get the sense that a lot of the sideshow stuff that followed chelios until he went to detroit took after his lead. he was no angel on or off the ice.
     
  18. steve141

    steve141 Registered User

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    Agree and disagree. Yes, Chelios was an unpredictable prankster with a bad temper.

    At the same time, Ken Holland still claims that his trade for a 37 year old Chelios was his best move ever. Numerous Red Wings players have talked about how much they learned from just watching him practice and play. His workout discipline is famous, but Nick Lidstrom for example credits Chelios with teaching him to aim slapshots just outside the goal crease to allow the puck to bounce on the boards instead of getting blocked.

    That the Red Wings are still employing Chelios as a mentor for their defensive prospects speaks alot to his qualities as a leader and teacher.
     
  19. TheMoreYouKnow

    TheMoreYouKnow Registered User

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    I think what he meant was, that Chelios was set back a bit as a leader in that he's a wild man who didn't just do pranks and has a bad temper but also has maybe a touch too much appetite for life after 2 AM, which really makes his discipline when it comes to staying in shape even more amazing.
     
  20. MakoSlade

    MakoSlade Registered User

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    I would take Stevens every time. Being a huge Devils fan and watching him play just about every game you really appreciated what he did to make a team better in so many ways. Devils fans still miss Stevens and always will.

    I think both Chelios and Steves were similar in most ways, though. Both were great defensively, great offensively, feared by their opponents and respected by all. I think a lot Chelios better offense comes from his better point shot, which was much more suited for the point that Stevens. Steven's shot just seemed to get blocked a lot. But passing and puck moving, both were very good. Was Chelios a great play maker? Seing him 20 or so times in his carrer I never saw him as a play maker.

    I like the Stevens fear factor though, he was in everyone's head and for good reason! Plus the intensity...wow. "You're next!"

    And hey, good question - who would you rather play against? I wonder what those who played against both would say...
     
  21. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    Bobby Clarke and Chris Chelios or Mark Messier were dirty SOBs. And they won. Gretzky or Bourque were not above taking a dive if they drew a penalty. You do what you can to get any advantage. Chelios would do anything to win. As much as any player I can think of. Not that I admire him for that, but hockey is a dirty, man's game. You do whatever you can to win and he did.
     
  22. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    I am guessing it would be a pretty unanimous.... Neither!
     
  23. Dennis Bonvie

    Dennis Bonvie Registered User

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    Can't say I've ever heard someone overrate Stevens that much.
     
  24. Dennis Bonvie

    Dennis Bonvie Registered User

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    Can't say I've ever heard someone overrate Stevens that much.
     
  25. habsjunkie2*

    habsjunkie2* Guest

    Chelios relatively easy.
     

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