The Biggest "What if"?

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Gobo, Jan 1, 2011.

  1. Gobo

    Gobo Stop looking Gare

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2010
    Messages:
    7,440
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    54
    Occupation:
    Nothing
    Who was the biggest "what if" player? What if they weren't injured (Orr, Lemeuix, Lindros, Forsberg, etc.)? What if we saw more of Bobby Orr? What if Mario Lemeiuex didn't have back problems? What if Forsberg/Lindros didn't suffer numerous injuries? What if Hasek's groin was never pulled? Where would these players rank among there peers then?

    Who is the biggest what if?
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2011
  2. Ozz

    Ozz Registered User

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    Messages:
    8,774
    Likes Received:
    194
    Trophy Points:
    81
    Occupation:
    Healthcare Systems Guru
    Location:
    Hockeytown
    I'd have to say Mario or Orr. Who knows how long Orr could've gone, and who knows what levels Mario would've reached if he were able to play injury-free. I don't feel the others were on the level or these two, nor were they going to reach it.
     
  3. Gobo

    Gobo Stop looking Gare

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2010
    Messages:
    7,440
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    54
    Occupation:
    Nothing
    But would Forsberg/Lindros have closed in on top 10 or even top 5 all time status? And would Hasek be the best goalie ever (IMO it's Roy)?
     
  4. ehhedler

    ehhedler thus edler

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2010
    Messages:
    6,680
    Likes Received:
    1,212
    Trophy Points:
    109
    mogilny

    what if he cared?
     
  5. Hardyvan123

    Hardyvan123 [email protected]

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    Messages:
    17,552
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Vancouver
    This question that you ask is why I'd take Forsberg/Lindros.

    The fact that they were traded for each other makes it even more intriguing IMO.

    Both were top level players who played in an extremely competitive NHL and we already have a large continuous sample of what both Orr and Lemieux did.

    Hasek is the best goalie of all time IMO already although I know that's open to debate because of his late start (in the NHL) and playing on some pretty weak Buffalo teams as well.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2011
  6. DisgruntledGoat*

    DisgruntledGoat* Registered User

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Messages:
    4,301
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    For me, Lindros.

    I think we have a pretty good idea what Orr and Lemieux could do without injuries.

    But, IMO, we never saw the best of Lindros. People forget that before the concussions, he suffered a bunch of knee injuries early on, and wore braces on both knees for most of his career.

    I don't know that we ever saw what a healthy, in-his-prime Lindros could really do.
     
  7. Nullus Reverentia

    Nullus Reverentia Hic Sunt Dracones

    Joined:
    May 17, 2010
    Messages:
    19,408
    Likes Received:
    380
    Trophy Points:
    139
    Occupation:
    Helium-3 Space Pirate
    Location:
    Parts Unknown
    Definitely Lindros.

    Orr barely played after he got hurt, we know what would happen if his knees didn't give out. Lemieux and Forsberg, for their most part, it didn't affect their play.

    Lindros on the other hand , was definitely affected. Best player in the NHL for a few years, not even though he wasn't in his prime and .wouldve dominated the dead puck era, but he was destroyed by injuries.

    And Hasek isn't that big a what if either.
     
  8. jumptheshark

    jumptheshark Rebooting myself Sponsor

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2003
    Messages:
    82,750
    Likes Received:
    2,519
    Trophy Points:
    250
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    currently creating a new identity
    Location:
    Have Backpack Will Travel
    For me even if Lindros does not get injured he would not have been the player some thinked.

    For What if Mario stays healthy for his career
     
  9. jumptheshark

    jumptheshark Rebooting myself Sponsor

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2003
    Messages:
    82,750
    Likes Received:
    2,519
    Trophy Points:
    250
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    currently creating a new identity
    Location:
    Have Backpack Will Travel
    here is a what if

    What if the oilers could have kept all their players--grets. mess coffey et all--how many cups do they win
     
  10. nik jr

    nik jr Registered User

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2005
    Messages:
    10,798
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    orr played most of his career after he got hurt. he had multiple operations on his left knee before the age of 21.
     
  11. Ozz

    Ozz Registered User

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    Messages:
    8,774
    Likes Received:
    194
    Trophy Points:
    81
    Occupation:
    Healthcare Systems Guru
    Location:
    Hockeytown
    Right, and how can you not be real curious as to what they'd have continued to do if they remained healthy? It'd be nuts!
     
  12. Ghost of David Bruce

    Ghost of David Bruce Registered Geezer

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    Messages:
    5,466
    Likes Received:
    569
    Trophy Points:
    139
    Location:
    Streets Ahead
    In order

    Lemieux... if healthy, may well have proven himself the #1 player of all time. Mostly, I just wanted more. You don't see something that special more than a handful of time in your life.
    Orr... would love to have seen what he could have done in the '72 series and into the early '80's. Like Lemieux, we were ripped off from seeing enough of one of the greatest players to ever lace 'em up.

    Lindros... could be had a Top 5-10 career. For a short period there, he had it all.

    Hasek... would have taken the "arguably" out of the Top goaltender of all time discussions
    Forsberg... could have taken the "arguably" out of the Top European player of all time discussions.
     
  13. Nalyd Psycho

    Nalyd Psycho Registered User

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Messages:
    24,415
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    No Bandwagon
    Home Page:
    What if Fedorov believed every game mattered?

    I would say the biggest what if players where the Eastern Bloc stars who never got to play in the NHL in their prime. How different would things be if, say, Buffalo had had Tretiak?
     
  14. Derick*

    Derick* Guest

    Lindros. Lemieux, Hasek, and Orr were three of the top five players of all time. They didn't play a full career, but they had enough time in the NHL to fully demonstrate their peak, even if it wasn't as long as we would have liked. Lindros isn't just an issue of longer. He probably would have peaked higher if it weren't for drama and health issues.
     
  15. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2006
    Messages:
    47,445
    Likes Received:
    1,658
    Trophy Points:
    169
    Location:
    Brooklyn
    Awards:
    My problem with Lindros and Forsberg in these examples is that for them to not be injured regularly, they would have had to change their styles of play, which would have made them less effective overall when they were on the ice.
     
  16. Hardyvan123

    Hardyvan123 [email protected]

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    Messages:
    17,552
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Vancouver
    I'm guessing the OP put these guys with the hope that they could have played their styles and stayed healthy which was probably unrealistic given their playing styles to be sure but all part of the "what if".
     
  17. Hardyvan123

    Hardyvan123 [email protected]

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    Messages:
    17,552
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Vancouver
    Exactly what kind of player did some people think he was going to be? He was the arguably the best player in the World for at least a small portion of his career.
     
  18. ozzie

    ozzie Registered User

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    1,201
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    96
    Location:
    Australia
    What if Mario didn't retire after the 97 season and continued to play for that 3 1/2 year gap.
     
  19. ForsbergForever

    ForsbergForever Red Rocket

    Joined:
    May 19, 2004
    Messages:
    2,199
    Likes Received:
    116
    Trophy Points:
    111
    My mind just races thinking about what Orr and Lemieux could have done without injuries, Pavel Bure and Cam Neely both with solid knees also really stand out for me. Maybe Bure would have scored 700 goals, who knows...
     
  20. Scott1980

    Scott1980 Registered User

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    370
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto
    Others:

    Bossy: What if he didn't miss 17 games in 86/87, and then retired? How many more 50+ goal seasons would he have gotten.

    Lafleur: What if he didn't have all those injuries from 80/81 to 83/84, how many more 50+ goals seasons would he have gotten.

    And so on, with Cam Neely!

    How about a change in attitude from Hakan Loob and Kent Nilsson? What if they didn't return to Europe? Just when the money was getting good!
     
  21. History will be made.
     
  22. tony d

    tony d Registered User Sponsor

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2007
    Messages:
    68,449
    Likes Received:
    1,710
    Trophy Points:
    186
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Office Worker
    Location:
    Behind A Tree
    Eric Lindros. I think he'd still be playing today had it not been for injuries.
     
  23. Marky9er

    Marky9er Registered User

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Messages:
    6,407
    Likes Received:
    115
    Trophy Points:
    111
    Location:
    Brampton ON
    Lemieux.
     
  24. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2005
    Messages:
    21,251
    Likes Received:
    19
    Trophy Points:
    116
    Mario and Orr are not question marks they are top 4 players all time beyond debate as to where in the top 4 they fall.

    Hasek - Ditto. He is not a question mark. He dominated in Europe, The NHL, Internationally and played well into his 40's, he is still freaking playing!

    Forsberg - Not really a question mark we know what he did and what he could do.

    Lindros is the only one that is an actual question mark. His injury really affected his play, he only had a half dozen truly full seasons all before he might have actually been in his prime. Lindros likely IMO have been in Trottier, Clarke, Sakic, Yzerman, Lafleur territory in terms of forwards for his career if he had not had those injuries but then again we can never know for sure. Now he is a possible non HHOFer. The other 4 are surefire HHOFers without doubt.

    In terms of question marks for the others it is whether Orr and Mario could have been clear #1's over Gretzky. Hasek out of the Sawchuk, Plante, Roy territory and the clear #1 of all-time. Forsberg might have been in Yzerman, Sakic, Clarke Territory all time but he is still IMO easily good enough for the HHOF.
     
  25. EastCoastNiner

    EastCoastNiner Registered User

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2008
    Messages:
    1,868
    Likes Received:
    74
    Trophy Points:
    61
    I don't get why people say this. It's not like his injuries were fluke injuries. They were a DIRECT result of his style of play. If he didn't play reckless, he wouldn't have been nearly as good as a he was. If he wasn't playing reckless and wasn't dominant, then he wouldn't find a good spot on an NHL roster. He never adjusted his play from when he was a mammoth compared to kids he was playing against, and that got him injured. If you take away his injuries, you take away his effectiveness as well.
     

Share This Page

monitoring_string = "358c248ada348a047a4b9bb27a146148"