Wayne & Mario vs Sakic & Yzerman in the 90s

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by IggyFan12, Mar 16, 2011.

  1. IggyFan12

    IggyFan12 Registered User

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    If you could have either Wayne and Mario on your team from the 1990/91 - 1998/99 seasons or Sakic and Yzerman which combo would you choose? I decided to break down the combos season by season to arrive at my answer:

    90/91 Season
    Gretzky-78GP 41G 122A 163P
    Mario- 26GP 19G 26A 45P
    Total-104GP-60G-148A-208P

    Playoffs: Mario explodes and wins his First Cup and Con Smyth trophy while Gretzky plays in 12 playoff games.

    Sakic-80 48 61 109
    Yzerman-80 51 57 108
    Total-160GP-99G-118A-217P

    Playoffs: Sakic misses the playoffs and Yzerman bows out in 7 games in the first round.

    Edge: Mario and Gretzky- Even though Mario plays just 26 games in the season his playoffs are out of this world and he leads his team to their first Stanley Cup.

    91/92 Season
    Wayne 74 31 90 121
    Mario 64 44 87 131
    Total:138GP-75G-177A-252P

    Playoffs: Mario again wins the Stanley Cup and gets 34 points while playing only 15 playoff games. Wayne bows out in the first round.

    Sakic-69 29 65 94
    Yzerman-79 45 58 103
    Totals: 148GP-74G-123A-197 P

    Playoffs:Sakic fails to make the playoffs again and Yzerman plays in only 11 games.

    Edge: Again Mario and Wayne take it this year. Mario's playoffs and the fact you would have two players with over 120 points is enough to take 66 & 99.

    92/93
    Wayne-45 16 49 65
    Mario-60 69 91 160
    Total-105GP-85G-140A-225P

    Playoffs: Wayne leads his team to the Cup finals while Mario gets upset by the NYI.

    Sakic:78 48 57 105
    Yzerman:84 58 79 137
    Totals:162GP-106G-136A-242P

    Playoffs: Both Sakic and Yzerman are first round exits.

    Edge: Despite playing far less games I would still go with Mario and Wayne because of their Playoff success and Mario's massive 160 point season.

    93/94

    Wayne-81 38 92 130
    Mario-22 17 20 37
    Total: 103GP-55G-112A-167P

    Playoffs:Wayne does not make the playoffs while the Penguins are eliminated first round

    Sakic:84 28 64 92
    Yzerman:58 24 58 82
    Totals: 149GP-52G-122A-174P
    Playoffs: Yzerman plays in only 3 games while Sakic misses the playoffs.

    Edge: Very Close but Id still take Mario and Wayne.

    94/95

    Wayne-48 11 37 48
    Mario- Did Not Play

    Playoffs: Wayne does not make playoffs

    Sakic:47 19 43 62
    Yzerman-47 12 26 38
    Totals: 94GP-31G-69A-100P

    Playoffs: Yzerman makes it to the Stanley Cup finals before getting swept and Sakic is eliminated in the first round.

    Edge: Sakic and Yzerman by a mile.

    95/96
    Wayne-80 23 79 102
    Mario-70 69 92 161
    Total: 150P-92G-171A-263P

    Playoffs: Wayne is eliminated by Yzerman and Mario is eliminated by the Panthers the same team who Sakic sweeps in the Finals.

    Sakic-82 51 69 120
    Yzerman-80 36 59 95
    Totals: 162GP-87G-128A-215P

    Playoffs: Sakic scores 18 goals and wins his only Con Smyth and first Stanely Cup. Yzerman gets defeated by Sakic in the West final.

    Edge: Probably the closest decision of the decade but I would take Sakic and Yzerman. Their playoff play and how Yzerman and the Wings win over 60 games is just to much not to take them.

    96/97-

    Wayne-82 25 72 97
    Mario-76 50 72 122
    Totals:158GP-75G-144A-219P

    Playoffs: Wayne loses in the 3rd round while Mario plays his last game for a while in the first round defeat from Philly.

    Sakic:65 22 52 74
    Yzerman:81 22 63 85
    Totals: 146GP-44G-115A-159P
    Playoffs: Yzerman wins his first Stanley Cup and Sakic is eliminated in the West final by Yzerman.

    Edge: Very slight edge to Sakic and Yzerman. Alot less points but both had good playoffs and a Cup tips the scale for them.

    97/98
    Wayne-82 23 67 90
    Mario- Retired at the Time

    Playoffs: Wayne does not make playoffs

    Sakic:64 27 36 63
    Yzerman:75 24 45 69
    Total:139GP-51G-81A-132P

    Playoffs: A first round playoff exit by Sakic while Yzerman wins his 2nd straight Stanley Cup and only Con Smyth Trophy.

    Edge: Sakic and Yzerman by a mile.

    98/99

    Wayne70 9 53 62
    Mario-Retired at the Time
    Playoffs: Wayne does not qualify for the playoffs

    Sakic: 73 41 55 96
    Yzerman:80 29 45 74
    Total: 153GP-70G-100A-170P

    Playoffs: Yzerman loses in round 2 to Sakic and the Avs while Sakic loses in the West final to the Stanley Cup champ Stars.

    Edge: Yzerman and Sakic no question.

    Awards:

    Wayne and Mario: 6 Art Ross trophies, 2 Hart Trophies, 2 Con Smyths, 2 Pearsons, 2 Lady Byngs, 4 First team all stars and 4 second team all stars.

    Yzerman and Sakic: 2 Con Smyths.

    I took Mario and Wayne 5 times and I took Sakic and Yzerman 5 times.

    I would have to go with Sakic and Yzerman however, because they were injured far less, had better all round game (ie defense) and also had great playoff performances and offensive numbers.

    I will probably get slammed for not taking any team with Mario and Wayne but Sakic and Yzerman are two of the greatest leaders and players the game has ever seen and in the 90s they were both in their primes and alot more healthy and younger then Mario and Wayne.
     
  2. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    dude, I'll pick wayne and mario no matter how you look at the numbers.
    you also have to take into consideration wayne and mario together = mind blown and most awesome hockey someone can watch.

    also , for Sakic to play with Yzerman is it a big differance from playing with forsberg?

    Mario had Jagr yes , but Jagr ain't Gretzky and Gretzky had nobody like Jagr in this period.
    Now Mario would have Wayne and Wayne would have Mario , what do you think will happen?

    Wayne & Mario are superior playoff player than Sakic & Yzerman because they're just far superior player , it's not rocket science.
     
  3. Blizzard

    Blizzard Registered User

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    When one guy played basically only five full seasons of the decade, Lemieux, and the other was just traded from a Dynasty and in his thirties, approaching 40 by the end of the decade, I'd imagine you probably will get slammed for it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2011
  4. Big Phil

    Big Phil Registered User

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    I would lose sleep at night if I chose anyone but Wayne and Mario. Considering that Gretzky led the 1990s in points at a time when he was "slowing down" you just can't ignore that.

    I don't think Wayne and Mario from 1991-1999 would be much different than the 1987 Canada Cup. Yes, Gretzky would have slowed down in the 1990s since that time frame, but Mario was better for all of the 1990s than he was in 1987. It would still be pure poetry on the ice. We saw how those two dominated the stat sheet vs. the Russians in the 1987 Canada Cup but can you imagine them piling up the points against the Hartford Whalers of the NHL? If they really put their mind to it, I am wondering if 275 points is out of the question.
     
  5. begbeee

    begbeee Registered User

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  6. IggyFan12

    IggyFan12 Registered User

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    I do agree with you if this were taking players in their primes but in the 90s Mario played half the games of Sakic and Yzerman. Thats a huge factor to consider.

    Also Mario and Wayne in the playoffs didn't do nearly as much as Sakic and Yzerman did after the 94 season. 3 Stanley Cups, 4 Final appearances, 2 Con Smyths vs. none after 94 for Mario and Wayne.
     
  7. Blizzard

    Blizzard Registered User

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    A power play clicking at a cool 40%. All I know is put me at the other wing in a contract year. They can deflect 40 or 50 off me into the net.
     
  8. overpass

    overpass Registered User

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    Wayne and Mario if Wayne can convince Mario not to retire. Mostly for Mario - Wayne was slowing down.
     
  9. jkrx

    jkrx Registered User

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    If Mario is healthy and dont retire, I'll pick Wayne and him. Otherwize I would have to pick Sakic and Yzerman as both were the true heroes of the 90s.
     
  10. thesniper99

    thesniper99 Registered User

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    If Wayne and Mario were together in the nineties they would have won 5-6 cups together if not more
     
  11. JackSlater

    JackSlater Registered User

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    This is really hard. Since Yzerman is my favourite player I am going to pick his pair, but if I did not have that bias I would probably go with Gretzky and Lemieux. It would just be too tantalizing to combine the two of them, even though Gretzky had dropped a level for most of the 90s. It's hard to imagine the Lemieux and Gretzky team losing the Cup in any of the first four years of the decade, and they would have basically as good a shot as anyone else in 96 and 97. We've already seen what happens when Sakic and Yzerman play with a comparable player, and they won three cups during the decade, although to be fair they would each have a better chance at winning the Cup in the first few years of the decade playing with each other as opposed to Forsberg/Fedorov. Their supporting cast might not be as good in this scenario as it was in Detroit and Colorado though. It's very close.
     
  12. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    Agree here. Even if Mario is oft injured, Gretzky was past his peak. Gretzky + Mario, together in playoffs equals Stanley Cups. The 1987 Canada Cup with them together showed exactly how good they would have been together. Even a 35 year old Gretzky could pass better than anyone. And Mario would have been the best possible linemate 99 EVER had. He would make Kurri or Nicholls or Hull or Anderson look like an average winger.

    I think that until about 1995 they would both average 200 point paces together. Despite the age and injuries. Mario would average 1.25 goals a game or more.
     
  13. Sens Rule

    Sens Rule Registered User

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    If he was on a line with Gretzky I think Mario would have had a great deal of motivation to keep playing and not retire. It would have been REALLY fun to play!
     
  14. shazariahl

    shazariahl Registered User

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    Another thing too, is you are taking playoffs heavily into account. I don't really blame you, but Gretzky wasn't on a strong team for most the 90's (the 93 kings being an obvious exception, but even they were a huge underdog to win anything). Mario's Pens were good in the early 90's, but not the last half. Looking at how good Wayne and Mario's playoff success separately to determine whether or not you'd want them on a team together probably isn't a very accurate assessment.

    On the other hand, both Sakic and Yzerman were on strong teams through the last half of the 90's, compared to Lemieux for maybe 3 maybe 4 good years, and Gretzky for 1 or 2.
     
  15. thesniper99

    thesniper99 Registered User

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    Gretzky's last four years in hockey 102pts 97pts 90pts and 62pts (which led the rangers). Downward in production well maybe for him. Now imagine he had Lemieux for even 40 games a season in those years, add at least 20 pts a season if not more. I am a huge Oil freak so I am biased but having Gretzky and Lemieux on a team together in the nineties can't be compared by any duo of that era.
     
  16. thesniper99

    thesniper99 Registered User

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    In a seven game series, a team built around an aging 99 and 66 or a team built around those 19s, I think the 19s would be lucky to win a game( of course based on the fact both teams had equal goalies and support players)
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2011
  17. Ozz

    Ozz Registered User

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    I can't believe some people wouldn't pick Mario & Gretzky...
     
  18. blogofmike

    blogofmike Registered User

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    Team 9966 would be Cup faves in six of those nine seasons.

    Of course, that's because Mario only plays in six of those nine seasons...

    In this 9-year span, Gretzky's 661 assists and 878 points leads the NHL and Lemieux has a 2.06 ppg average.
    They each have 40 point playoff runs, and are #1 and #2 in playoff ppg.
    It's easy to assume they'd have good chemistry together, and their numbers, which are already far ahead of the pack, would increase significantly.

    Unless Yzerman/Sakic comes with Fedorov and Roy, I'd take Gretzky/Lemieux 11 times out 10.
     
  19. IggyFan12

    IggyFan12 Registered User

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    The reason I have to going with Sakic and Yzerman is they are both alot younger than Mario and Wayne and in the later 90's had alot of team success. Both players could play in both ends of the ice as well and were both great playoff performers.

    Even tho it seems most people would take 66 & 99 (Although I dont personally agree but I completely understand why) the question I now have is which forward would have to be added to Sakic and Yzerman to make you want to take them over Mario and Gretzky? Would it be someone like a 2nd line winger or is the gap much larger say a Modano or Messier?
     
  20. Breakfast of Champs

    Breakfast of Champs Registered User

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    I cant even believe this is a question. Wayne and Mario Combined for 7 scoring titles in the 90s and mario retired after 2 consecutive and most likely would have won 2 more after that. If they played together it would have been insane. Both players would have hit 200 pts a season on a few occassions and I think Wayne could have convinced mario to not retire so they could make a run at their 5th cup together lol. Its too bad this didnt actually happen even for just a season because it would have been hilarious to see the ridiculous statistics that could have happened. 100 goals in a season for mario? I think its possible.
     
  21. overpass

    overpass Registered User

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    You know, these duos are great, but it's not like we haven't seen anything that good before.

    Mario and Jagr actually played together in the 1990s, and Jagr was better than Gretzky for most of the decade.

    Fedorov and Yzerman played on the same team in the 1990s, and Sakic played with Forsberg for the second half of the decade. Both Fedorov-Yzerman and Forsberg-Sakic were better than a hypothetical Sakic-Yzerman.

    Lemieux-Gretzky would have been the best duo for the first two or three years of the decade - but Lemieux and Jagr won two Cups in that time, so you can't even improve on that by much.
     
  22. IggyFan12

    IggyFan12 Registered User

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    Scoring is not the only thing that matters however. Think about the 96 playoffs. Yzerman strips Gretzky and scores the winner in game 7 OT to win the series. And Mario gets beat by the Panthers in 7 games only to have those same Panthers get swept by Sakic and the Avalanche. And the team Mario was playing on had Jagr with 149 points, Francis with 119 points Mario had 161 points and Nedved had 99. In the 90s especially later in the 90s offence wasnt the only thing that made champions. Look at who won the cup in the later 90s and you will see teams led by two way players like Sakic, Modano, and Yzerman. These were players who could get it done at both ends of the rink something that Mario and Wayne didnt do. For how great offensively they were, they were never great all around defensive & offensive players were they?
     
  23. blogofmike

    blogofmike Registered User

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    Happening to be in the spot where the puck bounces does not qualify as a strip. If just happening to be in the right spot when the puck bounces of a skate counts as a great defensive play, then Wayne Gretzky should have won more Selkes.

    Avalanche > Panthers > Penguins? Fine. But that doesn't mean Sakic > Lemieux.

    Defence did count in the 90's, and Sakic, Modano and Yzerman had a significant advantage over Mario and Wayne in terms of who played behind them, both on the blueline and in goal. Mike Modano never wins a Cup if he has Kelly Hrudey in net. The three centres you listed also had Fedorov, Forsberg and Nieuwendyk to help out. Playing for a better team does not make the individual more valuable.

    Taking Steve Yzerman in the playoffs for the 90's means you get his 98 Smythe year and a bunch of post-seasons where the team performs better when other players are on the ice. Which is fine if he comes with a great coach, a massive payroll, Shanahan, five Russians and a pair of Hall of Very Good goaltenders. Not so fine if he's by himself and you've just given up historic post-season performances to get him.
     
  24. quoipourquoi

    quoipourquoi Goaltender

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    In the 1996 playoffs specifically? Sure, he was. As far as the decade goes, it's no contest (Gretzky and Lemieux), but Sakic played better than any other skater on the ice in the 1996 playoffs, bar none.
     
  25. VanIslander

    VanIslander Don't waste my time

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    Wayne Gretzky and Steve Yzerman

    vs.

    Mario Lemieux and Joe Sakic​

    Now THAT is interesting!
     

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