Young of 1986 vs now

Discussion in 'Montreal Canadiens' started by zzoo, Oct 11, 2013.

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  1. zzoo

    zzoo Registered User

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    I didn't have a chance to follow Habs in 1986-89. If anyone watched Habs back then, how would you compare the young core back then with the young guys we have now ?

    86: Richer, Lemieux, Corson, Svoboda, Chelios, Roy
    Now: Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Eller, Beaulieu, Tinordi. Should we include young veterans (Pax, PK and Price) too ?

    Is 1986 the last time that we have had such a good young core ?
     
  2. Plante

    Plante Devils Advocate

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    Impossible to compare, with the power of hindsight I might be able to tell you, but to me Just Roy alone is more valuable than our entire current core.
     
  3. LePoche69

    LePoche69 Registered User

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    I do think Galchenyuk will end up being the best player of both lists (beside HOF Roy), but there are major disparencies. For example, both Lemieux and Corson were power forwards, Lemieux being a 30 goals power forward, which today's habs are FARRRRR from having.

    I think Chelios-Subban are close enough to be a wash.

    ...but Roy is THE difference. He alone is worth at least 2/3 of today's list.

    And Richer, despite all his weaknesses, was a true sniper, which again today's list doesn't have (but Galchenyuk will be way better all around player, it's not even funny)

    But honnestly, the fact is that 86's team was well balanced, way better than today's team.
     
  4. Godzilla

    Godzilla Registered User

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    You could probably say the same for Chelios...
     
  5. Lshap

    Lshap Hardline Moderate

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    Too much love for Chelios. Yes, he had a lot of talent, but he reached his peak with Chicago and has become legendary partly because of longevity. While he was with the Habs he was very good, but for every great rush there was a stupid mistake. He became more responsible and smarter once he left.

    But even at his peak, he wasn't as powerful a player as Subban, IMO.

    But I totally agree with the comments on Roy. I've said this before and I'm happy to repeat myself: Watching Patrick Roy explode into the league was one of my best hockey memories. He was one "Wow!" moment after another. So much of his ability came from his mental strength and blood-red determination, which is something nobody can teach you. His regular seasons could be erratic, great some nights, lost in space others, but in the playoffs he turned into the greatest clutch goalie in history because he willed himself to win.

    So yeah, he remains in a class by himself.

    That said, Subban is a similar type of game-changing player. Equally intense, equally talented. I find myself saying "Wow!" the same way when he grabs control of a play. Unfortunately, his 28 minutes on D can't exercise the same control over a game's outcome as a goalie's 60 minutes in nets. But don't take him for granted! We have a bonafide superstar on our team right now -- remember each long, loping rush up the ice, with arms poised like a wide-receiver; remember each PP as he sets up plays like a pool-shark and unloads bullets like a submachine gun. Program each game into your long-term memory so you can tell the next generation all about PK Subban the same way I can say "I was there" for the Patrick Roy era.

    I'll take PK over Chelios any day.

    Richer was unbelievably talented, but friggin inconsistent. Huge body, huge shot, driven by a tiny propeller of motivation. Drove me nuts watching him appear and disappear from game to game.

    Lemieux and Corson were tough, physical players, with decent talent.

    Comparing those guys to our current young guys, Galchenyuk has the most talent of the forwards. Richer was close, but so damn erratic that Eller might be more valuable over an entire season. After that, the 1986/87 team was loaded with big, gritty players who weren't as talented as Pacioretty or even Gallagher, but brought real scoring depth on every line. They wore down the opposition, something the smaller forwards of today's Habs can't do.
     
  6. Habs

    Habs Registered User

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    That 86 team could walk into any barn and score goals, or beat the crap out of you. It was up to the opposition to decide how they wanted the night to end. You messed with a rookie or star player, you answered the bell immediately. It enrages me to see how this team's philosophy has changed since the 80's - early 90's.

    There is no comparison.
     
  7. Steve Shutt

    Steve Shutt Don't Poke the Bear

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    I think you missed a few key pieces from the 86 squad:

    Mats Naslund (25)
    Bobby Smith (27)
    Kjell Dahlin (22) - scored 71 points that season but didn't amount to much
    Guy Carbonneau (25)
    Ryan Walter (27)
    Mike McPhee (25)
    Chris Nilan (27)
    Tom Kurvers (22)
    Gaston Gingras (26)
    Brian Skrudland (22)
    Sergio Momesso (19)
    Craig Ludwig (24)

    All of these guys were young and pretty much all went on to have significant NHL careers
     
  8. Kriss E

    Kriss E Registered User

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    Most of the league has changed. Actually can't think of any team that still plays this way other than perhaps the Bruins, and even them, they control it most of the time.

    In those days, fighting was a deterrent. Players knew they were going to get the crap beaten out of them with no protection. They also knew the same would happen to their guys if they would target the skilled players. Fighting actually served a purpose.
    Nowadays it's useless. Nobody is scared of hitting anybody anymore.
     
  9. Alexdaman

    Alexdaman Wolfman

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    You mean Pacioretty?


    The 86 team was a grinding team ( a la blue collar ), not far from today's bruins ( with much less talent ). The 2013-14 is built on talent, finesse and structure, so they are very difficult to compare.
     
  10. Lafleurs Guy

    Lafleurs Guy RIP Fugu

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    The mid to late 80s teams weren't great for offense (though it was decent) but it was as good defensively as any team ever assembled. They were big and strong too, absolutely brutal team to play against. We were absolutely huge for teams back then.

    Think about this for defensive/physical forwards: Carbo, Gainey, Skrudland, Walter, McPhee, Corson... and we usually had a couple of goons.
    Defense: Chelios, Robinson, Green, Lugdwig...
    Goal: Roy

    That's just stupid to play against.

    Offensively, Claude Lemieux got it done in the playoffs. Richer was a big strong forward with all the talent in the world (and unfortunately suffered from clinical depression that affected his career) and when he was on he was incredible. Naslund was good. Bobby Smith was a big strong talented playmaker.

    They were the prototype that the Devils followed in the 90s.


    Todays team?

    So early to say. Subban looks like a legit superstar now. Galchenyuk is essentially a rookie. I'd actually say we have more offensive potential than we had back then. Defensively? It's not even close. Price (a very good goalie) can only dream of having a defense like that in front of him. Hell, even Rask could only dream about it... Even then though, it's freaking Patrick Roy. No comparison between him and any goalie int the league right now. Up front, Carbonneau alone was insane. Skrudland was basically Carbo light. No comparison there.

    Ask this question again in two years. By then the comparison will be a little more fair.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2013
  11. Habaddict

    Habaddict Registered User

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    Hockey players now are a lot better at playing hockey, than hockey
    players in 1986.
     
  12. SherbrookeW

    SherbrookeW Registered User

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    It's important to remember that nobody thought that team was particularly good -- or even much good at all -- going into the playoffs. (And, to be sure, it was the Oilers being upset that year that opened the door for them. Very improbable that even Roy could have stopped Gretzky,et al.) Chelios, Lemieux, et al. look much better in retrospect, seeing all that they accomplished, then they did at the time. The two players who dominated then at forward were Bobby Smith and Mats Naslund, who played that year like the Swedish reincarnation of Yvan Cournoyer. They were a physical team, but certainly not some kind of slugging , Bruins style gang. Richer, Smith,Naslund, Carbonneau, Skrudland , Corson-- they were deep in prime forwards who all went on to fine careers here as elsewhere. The current squad has nothing like that depth at forward, though Galchenyuk might well have a better career than anyone from '86, and between Subban and Chelios, for the moment, it's a wash. What the comparison ought to remind everyone is that it takes depth at forward and a hot goaltender to win a Stanley Cup unexpectedly.
     
  13. Lafleurs Guy

    Lafleurs Guy RIP Fugu

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    I see...

    Thank you for the illumination.
     
  14. Lafleurs Guy

    Lafleurs Guy RIP Fugu

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    It was a huge upset... but there's a reason for this.

    The 80s was a high flying era. The Habs didn't have the scorers that other teams did. So yes, it was a huge upset. In retrospect though, that team was really a trailblazer in a lot of ways. They showed that team defense could win cups. Yes, they had superstars but none were offensive superstars. They really pioneered a successful style that would be copied by many teams in the future, most notably the Devils (coached by... Jacques Lemaire) who used the formula to win multiple cups.

    On paper that team doesn't come close to standing up to the Oilers, Islanders or even the Flyers. But it was a team concept and they had huge, strong players who bought into the system. And that team might've had the best defensive group of forwards to have ever played the game. Carbonneau used to throw himself in front of pucks. Gainey was still hanging around and the supporting cast was really tough to play against.

    Also, nobody knew how good Patrick Roy was going to be.
     
  15. Alexdaman

    Alexdaman Wolfman

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    I agree with your point... But it was a cup and not multiple cups.
     
  16. Lafleurs Guy

    Lafleurs Guy RIP Fugu

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    The Devils won multiple cups with that system. Lemaire may not have been the coach but it was the same defensive system.

    You still need talent to execute of course: Niedermayer, Brodeur, Stevens etc... but it was a defensive system that worked for them. Richer of course won cups with both teams.
     
  17. Alexdaman

    Alexdaman Wolfman

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    like I said I agree with your point.
     
  18. Habaddict

    Habaddict Registered User

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    Is that an agreement, or a disagreement?
     
  19. deandebean

    deandebean Registered User

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    The 86 group was much more talented as a whole. People forget that the same bunch ALMOST won the Cup three years later, after finishing second in the regular season with over 110 points (can't remember the total).

    Galchenuyk and Subban are very talented. But the 86 crowd had more than two solid players, surrounded by HOFers.
     
  20. Lafleurs Guy

    Lafleurs Guy RIP Fugu

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    Again, it's not a fair question. That team was further along and had a lot of players in their prime who'd been in the league a long time.

    Ask the question again in two or three years when Subban, Price, Max, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Beaulieu, Tinordi etc... are older and have been in the league a while. Maccarron will (hopefully) be in the lineup then too.
     
  21. Lshap

    Lshap Hardline Moderate

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    Kind of the opposite -- the 1986 team was a couple of HoFers (Chelios, Roy, plus a past-his-prime Robinson) surrounded by solid players. Let's not go overboard with nostalgia and turn them into retroactive superstars. The 80s Habs had decent scoring depth and awesome strength, but mostly they had Patrick Roy.

    I still say Subban was more talented than any skater on that team, and Galchenyuk will be.
     
  22. Lshap

    Lshap Hardline Moderate

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    Good point about New Jersey. I'll go even further and say that today's team that most closely resembles the Habs of 1986/87 is... the Bruins. Built around a strong defensive system and a strong physical presence, with balanced scoring depth rather than relying on superstars. Rask is no Roy, but there's a Chara/Robinson parallel waiting to be made.
     
  23. LePoche69

    LePoche69 Registered User

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    Max Pac is far from playing like a power forward. He's playing the game more like a sniper. He almost never rush the net. Gallagher is playing more like a PF despite his small stature. That's why Claude Lemieux was so useful: he was playing like Gallagher while being bigger and was scoring like Max Pac.
     
  24. KoZed

    KoZed Registered User

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    The biggest difference is the defense.

    The 86-89 defense was a forest compared to now. Chelios, Robinson, Ludwig, Green, Lalor were all big, tough, physical dudes. Forwards were scared to get into our zone.

    Galchenyuk reminds me a bit about Richer. Even in 86 you could see Richer was special. His shot and some of his moves haven't been seen since Lafleur.

    Gallagher also reminds me a bit about Lemieux, especially around the net. Always in someone's face, getting under people's skin. Just not as greasy and dirty and big as Lemieux.

    I wouldn't compare Subban to Chelly. Not the same flash, not the same style. Overall the same output, but very different ways to do it.

    Price and Roy couldn't be any more different. Roy was and still is a guy obsessed by winning. His competition level was always cranked up to 12/10. In 87 it was said that Hextall (Calder and Smythe winner) was better than Roy. Pissed Roy off so much, it was still driving him in 89 and 93 when he faced Hextall again. Price just don't have that OCD streak.
     
  25. Born in 1909

    Born in 1909 Hockey Royalty

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    Yep.

    No Roy... no 1986 and 1993 cups.
     

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