Who is the closest to be dethroned on their respective position: Orr or Howe?

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Nick Hansen, Oct 6, 2018.

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  1. Nick Hansen

    Nick Hansen Registered User

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    What do you think? Who has the closest competitor to the title of being greatest defenseman of all time or winger as in Howe's case?
     
  2. Claude Pepe Lemieux

    Claude Pepe Lemieux Greatest Montreal Canadiens of all time! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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    Neither but if one of them is "the closest to be dethroned on their respective position" one day so it will be Howe. With how the game is currently, I don't see another defenseman to win Art Ross trophies. And with Orr, we don't have to forget how he revolutionized the game forever like no other player before or after him (excepted maybe Roy for goaltenders).
     
  3. Laineux

    Laineux Registered User

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    I disagree. Defencemen are more and more involved in the offense today. Defencemen are required to be offensively talented and skate really well.

    A defenceman winning the Ross is a much less absurd thought today than it was when Orr came along. On the other hand, I don't expect to ever see the kind of gap that Orr had over his peers just pure skill-wise... it's probably impossible.
     
  4. Claude Pepe Lemieux

    Claude Pepe Lemieux Greatest Montreal Canadiens of all time! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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    Indeed and this is why I don't think neither of Howe or Orr will be dethroned one day.
     
  5. VanIslander

    VanIslander Don't waste my time

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    One defines a position and the other an era.
     
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  6. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    Today, a Canadian with Howe's skill set would probably be converted to center at a fairly young age.
     
  7. blogofmike

    blogofmike Registered User

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    Orr. It is reasonable to want Bourque's longer career if you had to choose and knew what was going to happen.

    Is there such a case for Hull or Richard or whoever else over Howe?
     
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  8. Mike Farkas

    Mike Farkas Grace Personified

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    Hull, maybe. At least when compared with Richard...but I don't see a case regardless...
     
  9. JackSlater

    JackSlater Registered User

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    So the question is basically which is better, the second best winger ever or the second best defenceman ever? Unless a person thinks that there is a really big gap between Howe and Orr. I'd say that Howe has closer competition.
     
  10. seventieslord

    seventieslord Student Of The Game

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    I think it's more like, which of them is more likely to be overtaken by some unknown player that's currently up and coming?
     
  11. Nick Hansen

    Nick Hansen Registered User

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    The former one was what I had in mind, but I guess both interpretations are fine.
     
  12. Cursed Lemon

    Cursed Lemon Registered Bruiser Sponsor

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    I echo TDMM up there; hockey for the last gazillion years has been "put your best players at center" for no conceivable reason.
     
  13. Sentinel

    Sentinel Registered User

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    Orr dominated his defensive peers more than than Howe his wing peers. I think the former is harder to replicate and/or eclipse than the latter.

    But if a defenseman comes along who is anywhere near Orr but with greater durability and longevity, you'd have to put him above Orr.
     
  14. BigBadBruins7708

    BigBadBruins7708 Registered User

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    its not just winning multiple Ross trophies, its the raw numbers too that are untouchable for any defenseman.

    look at it this way...career PPG:

    Orr - 1.39
    Crosby - 1.29
     
  15. Canadiens1958

    Canadiens1958 Registered User

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    No


    Howe was a smart but not fast or quick enough to play center.
     
  16. puckpilot

    puckpilot Registered User

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    For starters, a player that even comes close to Howe is going to have to come close to 20 straight seasons finishing top 5 in scoring. The player that's going to give Orr a run will need Art Ross trophies and will need to redefine their position.
     
  17. bobholly39

    bobholly39 Registered User

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    No one is close to Orr as a defenseman all time imo.

    Richard and Hull are close to Howe. Ovechkin with enough longevity could be, maybe even closer. Heck even a Crosby has an eerily comparable resume to Howe (though not a winger) through 13 seasons.

    Also - a defenseman winning the art ross in this era is by no means all that unlikely. Look at Karlsson's numbers in recent years, and look at how few points the Ross was won by in some of the recent years. The gap isn't that huge.
     
  18. VanIslander

    VanIslander Don't waste my time

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    CITATIONS NEEDED BECAUSE APPEARS OBVIOUSLY FALSE.

    Howe's alltime draft board bio has plenty of cited specific references to his skating abilities.

    Howe had 'an effortless style and deceptive speed', ' a mongoose quickness', several praises of his smooth skating, Bowman's analysis of him as a complete player who has skilled hands, feet and head, where most stars have only two at a top level, he had all three. Bill Gadsby says he's seen plenty of good skaters try to catch Howe from behind and be unable to catch up. Plenty more references. Go to the linked master bios and see for yourself (I'd link them but I'm walking with my smartphone).
     
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  19. Canadiens1958

    Canadiens1958 Registered User

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    1958 Poll:

    https://hfboards.mandatory.com/posts/61235263/

    Ah yes, the ATD. But you do not cite anyone stating that Gordie Howe should play center nor do you cite examples of Howe catching a fast skater from behind. Orr/Cournoyer, Fedorov/Yzerman.

    Nothing that points to center skating requisites provided by you.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2018
  20. Spirit of 67

    Spirit of 67 Registered User

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    I don't think there's anything on the horizon that would suggest either's spot is in jeopardy.

    However, I suppose the fact that Orr did things that no other defender has ever done may mean it's him.

    But both are still cemented in history.
     
  21. VanIslander

    VanIslander Don't waste my time

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    That only supports the idea that Howe could play center. Howe was voted the best passer and best playmaker AHEAD of all centers including Beliveau, a skillset one most often identifies with a pivot. Howe was also voted smartest player. The fastest skater was Henri Richard, a center, so I assume you thought that's somehow a relevant source to show Howe lacked speed?
    Lol. I was simply citing references against your claim that Howe was somehow not fast or quick enough to be a center. I asked you to support such a wild claim and you cited a poll that doesnt. I referenced several accounts of his speed and quickness and direct you to where more citations are.

    Peace. Out.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2018
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  22. JackSlater

    JackSlater Registered User

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    It is pretty obvious that Howe would be put at centre if he grew up in Canada in recent times. That's just the way that young Canadian forwards are typically handled, even when their games seem more suitable for the wing. I doubt that he would have been brought along in a different manner than another Saskatchewan player in Getzlaf.
     
  23. Canadiens1958

    Canadiens1958 Registered User

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    No, both would have played defence at the youth level today. Saskatchewan or anywhere else.

    Both are RHS - premium for modern defencemen. Playing defence allows the youth team roughly 10 more minutes of ice time for their best player and a rotation amongst all three forward lines.
     
  24. ChiTownPhilly

    ChiTownPhilly Not Too Soft

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    Returning to the topic...

    This is a tough one. Modern, more refined defensive schemes militate against any Defenseman holding sway over the full length of the ice the way Orr did. However...

    the physical demands of the modern game militate against any forward ever having the combination of productivity and freakish longevity that Gordie Howe did.

    Don't think either one is going to happen, but if I had to choose the less unlikely event, I would say that it's ever-so-slightly more probable that something could loosen up with rules-changes in the next 100-200 years (if hockey [and humanity] last that long) that might make an Orr-like career a remote possibility. I don't see hockey going in a direction that will make it significantly less physically demanding, either in the near OR far future.
     
  25. JackSlater

    JackSlater Registered User

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    I doubt it, but it's more likely than Howe remaining a winger.
     

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