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Guest6611
( )

Posted - 01/18/2009 :  17:48:01  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Guest5443

quote:
Originally posted by Guest6030

...Mario Lemieux.
This guy made Robby Brown a star, Kevin stevens a star, and many more. Its unbelievable what he did in his short career. I say short because he had health issues and even when he played, he played with a damaged back.


And Gretzky made many around him a star. Most notably he made Bernie Nicholls a 50+ goal and 150 point scorer. Bernie Nicholls who had less talent than Brown and Stevens combined (ok exaggeration). Can you even phatom how rare a 150 points a season scorer is? There are only about 6 players ever to play the game to achieve that plateau. EVER. and Nicholls is one of them because of Gretz.



That is a good point. But, and not that I am arguing against you, I am just pointing out, Nicholls was a pretty good player on his own, he did some pretty good seasons including a 100 point season before Gretzky got traded to L.A.
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Guest5443
( )

Posted - 01/18/2009 :  18:24:44  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by willus3
All three guys that I say are better played the game the way it was supposed to be played and they could all take care of themselves.

I'm curious how is the game supposed to be played? Looks like Gretz was playing it pretty well if not better than all. That is like saying Ghandi was no rebel because he started a rebellion movement through pacifism. That's no way to rebel, you gotta kill, maim and destroy... But darn it all, wasn't that pacifism thing the greatest rebellion of all time? I'm trying to make an analogy not compare the equivalence of Wayne to Ghandi. Anyways I digress.

I think this is part of his greatness. He didn't play the game the way you are "supposed" to. His style of play showed that the physical game is not necessary to excel in the game. It is the mental game that made a player great. You don't have to play with your elbows up, be fast, strong, fight or be physical to play hockey. A nice poke check here, a stick lift there, anticipating the play and reading the game is all that is needed to be an effective player.

What I think makes Wayne so great above all else is not the longevity, it is the consistent statistical dominance. Yes he is lucky to not be hurt, but is that really luck if his style of play allows him to be injury free? Also look at those with long careers, how long continuously were they dominant (say within top 10 scoring)? Not very long. Wayne in the top 10 of scoring almost every year he played up until the end of his career. Not Gordie, Sakic, Yzerman, Bourque.... could come close to the sustained dominance. Most of us will never understand how is difficult if not impossible to do. It is like I don't know, averaging 30+ points per game for your entire career in basketball over 15 years. Again another bad analogy/comparison but you get my drift.
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Guest6611
( )

Posted - 01/18/2009 :  20:19:44  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Guest5443

quote:
Originally posted by willus3
All three guys that I say are better played the game the way it was supposed to be played and they could all take care of themselves.

I'm curious how is the game supposed to be played? Looks like Gretz was playing it pretty well if not better than all. That is like saying Ghandi was no rebel because he started a rebellion movement through pacifism. That's no way to rebel, you gotta kill, maim and destroy... But darn it all, wasn't that pacifism thing the greatest rebellion of all time? I'm trying to make an analogy not compare the equivalence of Wayne to Ghandi. Anyways I digress.

I think this is part of his greatness. He didn't play the game the way you are "supposed" to. His style of play showed that the physical game is not necessary to excel in the game. It is the mental game that made a player great. You don't have to play with your elbows up, be fast, strong, fight or be physical to play hockey. A nice poke check here, a stick lift there, anticipating the play and reading the game is all that is needed to be an effective player.

What I think makes Wayne so great above all else is not the longevity, it is the consistent statistical dominance. Yes he is lucky to not be hurt, but is that really luck if his style of play allows him to be injury free? Also look at those with long careers, how long continuously were they dominant (say within top 10 scoring)? Not very long. Wayne in the top 10 of scoring almost every year he played up until the end of his career. Not Gordie, Sakic, Yzerman, Bourque.... could come close to the sustained dominance. Most of us will never understand how is difficult if not impossible to do. It is like I don't know, averaging 30+ points per game for your entire career in basketball over 15 years. Again another bad analogy/comparison but you get my drift.




Interesting read.

"but is that really luck if his style of play allows him to be injury free?"

No. It is skill, intelligence and great awareness.
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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 01/18/2009 :  21:01:17  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Guest6611

quote:
Originally posted by Guest5443

quote:
Originally posted by Guest6030

...Mario Lemieux.
This guy made Robby Brown a star, Kevin stevens a star, and many more. Its unbelievable what he did in his short career. I say short because he had health issues and even when he played, he played with a damaged back.


And Gretzky made many around him a star. Most notably he made Bernie Nicholls a 50+ goal and 150 point scorer. Bernie Nicholls who had less talent than Brown and Stevens combined (ok exaggeration). Can you even phatom how rare a 150 points a season scorer is? There are only about 6 players ever to play the game to achieve that plateau. EVER. and Nicholls is one of them because of Gretz.



That is a good point. But, and not that I am arguing against you, I am just pointing out, Nicholls was a pretty good player on his own, he did some pretty good seasons including a 100 point season before Gretzky got traded to L.A.


Contrary to what most people believe, (because they just read the stats and assume) Nicholls didn't play on a line with Gretzky. They played power play together that season and that was it.



"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan
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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 01/18/2009 :  21:07:40  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Guest5443

quote:
Originally posted by willus3
All three guys that I say are better played the game the way it was supposed to be played and they could all take care of themselves.

I'm curious how is the game supposed to be played? Looks like Gretz was playing it pretty well if not better than all. That is like saying Ghandi was no rebel because he started a rebellion movement through pacifism. That's no way to rebel, you gotta kill, maim and destroy... But darn it all, wasn't that pacifism thing the greatest rebellion of all time? I'm trying to make an analogy not compare the equivalence of Wayne to Ghandi. Anyways I digress.

I think this is part of his greatness. He didn't play the game the way you are "supposed" to. His style of play showed that the physical game is not necessary to excel in the game. It is the mental game that made a player great. You don't have to play with your elbows up, be fast, strong, fight or be physical to play hockey. A nice poke check here, a stick lift there, anticipating the play and reading the game is all that is needed to be an effective player.

What I think makes Wayne so great above all else is not the longevity, it is the consistent statistical dominance. Yes he is lucky to not be hurt, but is that really luck if his style of play allows him to be injury free? Also look at those with long careers, how long continuously were they dominant (say within top 10 scoring)? Not very long. Wayne in the top 10 of scoring almost every year he played up until the end of his career. Not Gordie, Sakic, Yzerman, Bourque.... could come close to the sustained dominance. Most of us will never understand how is difficult if not impossible to do. It is like I don't know, averaging 30+ points per game for your entire career in basketball over 15 years. Again another bad analogy/comparison but you get my drift.



Men's hockey is a contact sport. Always has been. That is how it is supposed to be played. He had others play physical for him. Gretzky is responsible for the enforcer BS of today.

By the way, Gordie Howe was top 5 in scoring for 20 straight seasons while playing a tough physical brand of hockey. You know, the way it is supposed to be played...
What was that you were saying about sustained dominance?

"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan
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andyhack
PickupHockey Pro



Japan
891 Posts

Posted - 01/19/2009 :  03:34:30  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Guest5443
And Gretzky made many around him a star. Most notably he made Bernie Nicholls a 50+ goal and 150 point scorer. Bernie Nicholls who had less talent than Brown and Stevens combined (ok exaggeration). Can you even phatom how rare a 150 points a season scorer is? There are only about 6 players ever to play the game to achieve that plateau. EVER. and Nicholls is one of them because of Gretz.



I wonder, however, whether Bernie Nicholls would have gone down in hockey history as a more highly regarded player had he never met Wayne Gretzky. We'll never know what would have happened, of course, but I think a very legitimate argument can be made that the "Gretzky experience" ultiimately hurt, more than helped, Bernie Nicholl's reputation.

As for this everlasting debate, although I think Wayne was obviously an unbelievably sensational offensive hockey player, after thinking and commenting about this on this site for I guess almost a couple of years now, and after debating GOATs for other sports on other sites, I believe more than ever that those who say "Wayne Gretzky is the greatest hockey player of all time" are simply not stating their words correctly. You have to somehow fit "offensive" into that sentence - like "He is the greatest offensive hockey player of all time". Or you have to add something after the "greatest" part like "Greatest player of all time based on his offence, but others were far better all round players". To just say to a ten year old learning about hockey and hockey history that "Wayne Gretzky is the greatest hockey player of all time", without making any further comment, is simply not telling the whole story.




Edited by - andyhack on 01/19/2009 04:02:51
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8176 Posts

Posted - 01/19/2009 :  08:33:28  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Firstly, on the Bernie Nicholls question. I think there must be a full moon out, because Willus and I agree on something. Even if you take out the 150 points season, he had over 1000 points and better than a PPG average through a 17 year career. Give the guy credit.

And obviously Gretzky made everyone around him better. There are 5 guys in the HOF that played a big piece of their career with Gretzky. But the same can be said for Howe, Orr, Lemieux, any of the GOAT's. That is part of being a superduper star. Not only is the player amazing, but they have the ability to make everyone around them better.

Now, only Andyhack's statement. Here's my thing. Everyone knows that Gretzky is the best ever in my books. And I think it's completely fair to say that Gretzky was not as good defensively as many, many other players. But, the deal with Gretzky is that he was SO amazing offensively, that it puts him head an shoulders above anyone else who played.

Is that a fair statement??
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fat_elvis_rocked
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
899 Posts

Posted - 01/19/2009 :  09:41:02  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by willus3


Men's hockey is a contact sport. Always has been. That is how it is supposed to be played. He had others play physical for him. Gretzky is responsible for the enforcer BS of today.
[/quote]



I usually give the moderator's lots of leeway with their opinions as they have been at this a lot longer, and obviously give valuable insight with their rebuttals and opinions, but this time....WTF???...

Yes men's hockey is a contact sport, if you choose to play it that way, but you mean to tell us that if you don't, you're not really a hockey player?? Ludicrous, assinine and just plain wrong.

Not taking away anything from those who do combine physicality and grace, but come on...
Was Pat Lafontaine not a hockey player? Was Jari Kurri a heavy hitter? Was Guy Lafleur, Yvonne Cournoyer, Adam Oates etc. etc. not players???
The game can be played many different ways utilizing whatever skills make the player successful. Geez!!!
Gretzky was the cause of the enforcers????
John Ferguson wasn't an enforcer? Dave Schultz wasn't? Clark Gilles didn't look after Bossy? etc.etc....again. That role has been around just a wee bit longer than Gretzky methinks...

Please, if you want to sound this silly....at least sign on with a guest account next time...then I won't be near as surprised..

PS. Be careful Willus, you keep up with this Gretzky rule this and unwritten Gretzky rule that, you actually give creedence to the argument that Gretzky is the greatest, if they had to change all these things leauge-wide just for him...

Edited by - fat_elvis_rocked on 01/19/2009 11:00:31
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Guest4631
( )

Posted - 01/19/2009 :  11:23:08  Reply with Quote
yes gretzky was the greatest offensive point producer of all time, but that doesnt make him the greatest player of all time. there is alot more to the game of hockey then just getting points, are you going to take away from a player like orr because he was a defenceman and didnt get as many points as a forward?

and yeah there are 5 hall of famers that played a great deal of time with gretzky, ever think that they made greztky better? as oppose to gretzky making them better but points alone do not make him the greatest player of all time. you couldnt even lay a clean hit on him without getting jumped for it, and the refs allowed him to get away with what he wanted.

as for fat elvis why is it willus should sign on as a guest to say gretzky wasnt the best play? apparently it seems like some ppl here think that if your not a member of the pick up hockey forum you cant possibly cant know anything about hockey, maybe i will sign up, then i to can live in the fantasy world you live in where gretzky is the greatest player, and he wasnt given everything from the league on a silver platter
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8176 Posts

Posted - 01/19/2009 :  11:28:39  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I don't think that Fat Elvis is questioning Willus's choice as to who is the best ever. He is questioning the comment about "hockey the way it was meant to be played" as well as (I am paraphrasing here) that Gretzky is responsible for the "Enforcer BS." I tend to agree with his.

Also, I am not questioning Orr's abilities because he was a defenseman in any way, shape, or form. I am simply saying that Gretzky was an average to above average player all over the ice. However, his uncanny offensive abilities puts him ahead of all others. That is my opinion.
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fat_elvis_rocked
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
899 Posts

Posted - 01/19/2009 :  12:18:36  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That's exactly right Beans...there is no way to quantify who was/is or will ever be the best....way too subjective. Makes for good debate though..usually The game is the game, to blanket it and say 'This is the way real men play', just smacks of rhetorical nonsense. Have an opinion, which everyone is entitled to, but please keep it in perspective.

And to Guest4631, by all means, sign up, have your nameless opinion held in regard and debated or agreed to accordingly. That has nothing to do with anyone's knowledge or lack thereof, I would just find it much better to be able to put a name/face to an opinion that matters, instead of 'some' typical guest comments that read like an underachieving school kid's text messages..ie. 'I ROK U SUK!', or some other such drivel. Unfortunately, some of the more poignant guest comments get lost in the shuffle because of it.

I know I tend to read comments that have an account with them, with more interest, because if nothing else, the person leaving their thoughts can at least take credit or debate their point. I'm sorry, but to me, it's hard to take 'most' guest accounts too seriously, even if their points are valid, because you never get a feel for how they actually think. Ahh well free country and all that....

And for the record.......I still say Gretzky !!
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Guest4974
( )

Posted - 01/19/2009 :  12:32:29  Reply with Quote
boys boys boys.
how come mike or randy moller havent even been mentioned in the running for the greatest player ever
i mean big mike was captain of the world juniors and continuously has the street swagger to get his underachieving sons into high level hockey.
mikey moller just cant keep his wallet in his pocket during tryouts
i wonder if he gets this from his father???
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andyhack
PickupHockey Pro



Japan
891 Posts

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  03:02:07  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Beans15
But, the deal with Gretzky is that he was SO amazing offensively, that it puts him head an shoulders above anyone else who played.
Is that a fair statement??



No, I don't think it is, Beans. Especially if you want to use the "head and shoulders above anyone else" thing, which I don't agree with, but, if you are going to use it, you just HAVE to qualify your statement somehow.

I mean, let me put it to you this way. Lets say a martian fell to earth and wanted to learn about hockey. He knows absolutely nothing as he starts to watch, and asks you "who was the greatest hockey player of all time?"

You give him your answer:

"The deal with Gretzky is that he was SO amazing offensively, that it puts him head an shoulders above anyone else who played."

Another Gretzky supporter gives him this answer:

"The deal with Gretzky is that he was SO amazing offensively, that it puts him head an shoulders above anyone else who played in terms of offence. And I think based on that incredible offence he is the GOAT, though there were many greater all-round players than Gretzky".

Which is the fairer answer?

I don't agree with parts (and the ultimate conclusion) in either answer, but I think the martian would go away with a very incomplete picture with your answer.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Edit - I might have asked this before but don't remember getting a response - looking at my other favorite sport, tennis, lets say hypothetically, that Pete Sampras would have won EVEN MORE Wimbledon titles. Lets put it in Gretzky terms and give it some crazy number - say he would have won it twice as many times - 14 friggin Wimbledons!!!! And lets give him a few more US Open and Australian Open titles in this hypothetical too while we're at it. So his record is something like 14 Wimbys, 10 USO and 7 AO!!!! Amazing, incredible Gretzky like stuff! BUT, lets also say he continues to have the same mediocre French Open record on his record (with one trip to the semis and a bunch of early round losses). And, moreover, lets say he generally has the same dismal record on the whole clay court circuit in this hypothetical as he does in reality.

Is Pistol Pete hands down the greatest tennis player of all time, head and shoulders above everyone else, in this hypothetical? Or should we ask, even with the astronomical numbers, whether there were better all round players who could succeed on all surfaces?


Edited by - andyhack on 01/20/2009 05:20:09
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Guest8332
( )

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  07:52:44  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by andyhack

As for this everlasting debate, although I think Wayne was obviously an unbelievably sensational offensive hockey player, after thinking and commenting about this on this site for I guess almost a couple of years now, and after debating GOATs for other sports on other sites, I believe more than ever that those who say "Wayne Gretzky is the greatest hockey player of all time" are simply not stating their words correctly. You have to somehow fit "offensive" into that sentence - like "He is the greatest offensive hockey player of all time". Or you have to add something after the "greatest" part like "Greatest player of all time based on his offence, but others were far better all round players". To just say to a ten year old learning about hockey and hockey history that "Wayne Gretzky is the greatest hockey player of all time", without making any further comment, is simply not telling the whole story.


Agreed if you are going to qualify Orr's title with the greatest offensive defensemen of all time.
Lemieux would be greatest physical skill of all time.
Howe as greatest power forward of all time.
And so on.

That way every player named within the top 5 heck even top 20 would have a title of greatest "something" of all time. But the argument of "The Greatest of All Time" well that's why we have 8 pages of this.
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8176 Posts

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  07:56:15  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ok Andy, here's the way my head works. I am a geek and have always been a geek. So think of it this way.

Offense+Defense+Intangibles+Work Ethic/Effort+Impact on the Game = GOAT.

So, considering my crazy illogical equation, a ranking of each on(say out of 100) would produce the best player of all time.

First of all, 100 would only be acheived by the best player in that catagory, so WG gets 100 in offense. The likes of Lemiuex, Orr, Howe, Bossy would be between 85 and 90. Defensively, he was above average, so I will give him a 80. Intangibles, I would have to give a pretty high score as well, and this is where things change between many different people. If you come from my school of thought, the physical play is not required to have a high intangilble score. A Willus like train of though required a physical component as that is the opinion of how hockey should be played. Neither is right or wrong, just different. But this is where more people would switch between the likes of Gretzky and Lemieux to the likes of Howe and Orr. I would give Gretzky an 85 in intangibles. Then you have work ethic/effort. Most any interview that you will hear from anyone who played with Gretzky talked about how hard he work in practice. And he never took a shift off. I give him a 95 there as well. Impact on the game, he is one of the maybe 5 or 8 players that would be a 100 in my opinion. He changed the way that centre's played (Gretzky's office) and the way teams played defense. He, along with Orr, Plante, Howe, and a few others would get 100. I give Gretzky 100 in Impact on the game.


So, Gretzky's GOAT rating is

100+80+85+95+100= 460

Let's do Bobby Orr really quick. Same scale

85+95+90+90+100 =460

I bet most of you were surprised to see that the two scored the same, that is that is truely how high I hold both players.

The two players are virtually tied. Both had the same rating score. So, the kicker to me is that although Orr was that amazing, I can't honestly say that he was the best player off all time in any of my catagories. However, I can say that Gretzky is the greatest offensive player. He get's the tie breaks.

So, even through Gretzky was not an amazing defensive player, his offensive skills, hard work, and impact on the game more than make up for any short comings.
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Guest4631
( )

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  08:27:32  Reply with Quote
yes according to your equation they come in tied in points. but considering orr was a defenceman his offence number should be atleast a 90. i dont believe gretzky was a 80 at defense 70 tops. even if i allow your to keep a higher work ethic for gretzky over orr which i dont see. that makes it

gretzky - 100 - 70 - 85 - 95 - 100 = 450

orr - 90 - 95 - 90 - 90 - 100 = 465
ladys n gentleman we have a winner

gretzky was a great offensive player, orr was a great defenceman

but orr was much more of a threat to score, than wayne was to stop anthe team to score making orr the better all around player

(Moderator edit - You originally had Orr's rating at 365 when the numbers totaled 465)

Edited by - Beans15 on 01/20/2009 08:45:04
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8176 Posts

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  08:54:12  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Guest4631

yes according to your equation they come in tied in points. but considering orr was a defenceman his offence number should be atleast a 90. i dont believe gretzky was a 80 at defense 70 tops. even if i allow your to keep a higher work ethic for gretzky over orr which i dont see. that makes it

gretzky - 100 - 70 - 85 - 95 - 100 = 450

orr - 90 - 95 - 90 - 90 - 100 = 465
ladys n gentleman we have a winner

gretzky was a great offensive player, orr was a great defenceman

but orr was much more of a threat to score, than wayne was to stop anthe team to score making orr the better all around player

Moderator edit - You originally had Orr's rating at 365 when the numbers totaled 465.



I completely disagree. Firstly, Gretzky played more than a reasonable amount of time on the PK, and did a fine job at it. Secondly, how often did Gretzky steal the puck in the neutral zone??? Tons. I watched one game recently between the Oilers and Islanders from the 84 Cup Final. I counted 7 takeaways Gretzky had in the neutral zone. Just because he didn't dig a ton in the defensive corners and didn't play physical did not mean he was poor defensively. Gretzky played a different brand of defense than others, but it does not mean it was not effective.

And I also don't agree with you assesment of Orr's offense. If you have to measure Gretzky's defensive abilities as a forward to Orr's defensive abilities as a defensemen, then you have to compare Orr's offensive to Gretzky's straight up as well. And to that matter, if Gretzky is 100, then the next few players below him are Lemieux (95), Bossy, (90), Dionne (85). Orr and Dionne would be very close in my opinion. Orr was not as good offensively as Bossy or Lemiuex, in my humble opinion.

If we were comparing Forwards to Forwards and defensemen to defensemen, it would be different. But we are not. You can't drop Gretzky's defensive abilities and raise Orr's offensive abilities when you are calling all things equal.
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Guest4631
( )

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  11:13:37  Reply with Quote
i am comparing them player for player if you move orr to a forward position he is going to be one of the top forwards in the league, he was all ready a 35-40 goal scorer and 130 point player as a defenceman. his numbers would only go up as a forward. and he was solid as a defenceman

if you moved gretz back to defence he would not be a top 4 d-man on any team nor would he produce the points that orr did. all in all orr was a much better player then gretzky, and yes he was alot more physical, which i believe is neccesary to be a complete hockey player. there is almost nothing that gretzky could do on the ice that orr could not, but there are things that orr could do that gretzky could not.

i also lost a ton of respect for gretzky when he tried to steal the puck from the last game in winnipeg, that was absolutly classless
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Guest5443
( )

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  13:55:10  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Guest4631



if you moved gretz back to defence he would not be a top 4 d-man on any team nor would he produce the points that orr did. all in all orr was a much better player then gretzky, and yes he was alot more physical, which i believe is neccesary to be a complete hockey player. there is almost nothing that gretzky could do on the ice that orr could not, but there are things that orr could do that gretzky could not.


Willus is that you?

If (a great bigh if) Gretz was moved back as a D, see him as effective as any defencemen but much more productive points wise because of his awesome break out pass and he would likely quarterback a highly effective PP.

A little poke check here and perfect positioning there and very limited physical play. Voila a top pairing defencemen who is your QB for the PP. Sounds familiar to anyone currently playing? Yup. He who has wone 6 norris and a few stanleys and currently plays for the defending champ. But apparently he is not playing hockey the way it is supposed to because he does not play a physical game like Phaneuf.
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andyhack
PickupHockey Pro



Japan
891 Posts

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  15:05:34  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I won't be able to get to Beans formula right now, but I wanted to respond to the Guest who said,

"Agreed if you are going to qualify Orr's title with the greatest offensive defensemen of all time."

That was in response to my point that you need to somehow fit into the "Wayne is the GOAT" statement that Wayne's greatness was primarily on offence.

Guest - I have no problem with your point that if you follow my thinking you have to make little additions to a GOAT declaration about all of the candidates to some degree, but you wouldn't JUST say what you said about Orr, would you? No, you would say something like "and in addition to being great offensively, he also was usually very good, and sometimes incredible, defensively". Could you add a somewhat negative qualification to Orr? Sure, but it probably would have to do simply with longevity, - you would add something, "but other greats played far longer than Bobby due to his unfortunate knee problems that ended his career early". Not sure what qualification you could add to Howe as never saw him in his prime.

Anyway, the tennis hypothetical point at the end of my last post was to say this - Gretzky could have done even better - could have topped 250 points, could have scored over 100 goals in a season..., and there still would be legitimate reason, as there is today, to question whether he is the GOAT, or at least ask that the declaration be qualified somewhat.


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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  16:33:29  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by fat_elvis_rocked



quote:
usually give the moderator's lots of leeway with their opinions as they have been at this a lot longer, and obviously give valuable insight with their rebuttals and opinions, but this time....WTF???...


You are free to engage a moderator as freely as any other poster.

quote:

Yes men's hockey is a contact sport, if you choose to play it that way, but you mean to tell us that if you don't, you're not really a hockey player?? Ludicrous, assinine and just plain wrong.


Women's hockey IS a lot of fun isn't it.

quote:
Not taking away anything from those who do combine physicality and grace, but come on...
Was Pat Lafontaine not a hockey player? Was Jari Kurri a heavy hitter? Was Guy Lafleur, Yvonne Cournoyer, Adam Oates etc. etc. not players???
The game can be played many different ways utilizing whatever skills make the player successful. Geez!!!

Gretzky was bar none the least physical player I have ever seen. The guys you mentioned were far more physical. Far more.


quote:
Gretzky was the cause of the enforcers????
John Ferguson wasn't an enforcer? Dave Schultz wasn't? Clark Gilles didn't look after Bossy? etc.etc....again. That role has been around just a wee bit longer than Gretzky methinks...


I saw all of those guys play. None of them ever took it to the level Sather did with cement head and McSorley. You couldn't wink at Gretzky without a reaction from Sather and his henchmen.

quote:
Please, if you want to sound this silly....at least sign on with a guest account next time...then I won't be near as surprised..



Why would I ever do that. Seems cowardly to me.

[quote]PS. Be careful Willus, you keep up with this Gretzky rule this and unwritten Gretzky rule that, you actually give creedence to the argument that Gretzky is the greatest, if they had to change all these things leauge-wide just for him...






Not sure how that makes sense. If you have to protect a player with the equivalent of Obama's secret service for him to succeed I don't see how it makes him great. What it does indicate is that he couldn't accomplish what he did without that help.

"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan

Edited by - willus3 on 01/20/2009 16:40:42
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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 01/20/2009 :  16:36:19  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Guest5443

quote:
Originally posted by Guest4631



if you moved gretz back to defence he would not be a top 4 d-man on any team nor would he produce the points that orr did. all in all orr was a much better player then gretzky, and yes he was alot more physical, which i believe is neccesary to be a complete hockey player. there is almost nothing that gretzky could do on the ice that orr could not, but there are things that orr could do that gretzky could not.


Willus is that you?

If (a great bigh if) Gretz was moved back as a D, see him as effective as any defencemen but much more productive points wise because of his awesome break out pass and he would likely quarterback a highly effective PP.

A little poke check here and perfect positioning there and very limited physical play. Voila a top pairing defencemen who is your QB for the PP. Sounds familiar to anyone currently playing? Yup. He who has wone 6 norris and a few stanleys and currently plays for the defending champ. But apparently he is not playing hockey the way it is supposed to because he does not play a physical game like Phaneuf.



No that was not me. I don't hide behind a guest sign in.



"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan
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Guest9299
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Posted - 01/20/2009 :  16:53:21  Reply with Quote
The stats thing someone brought up a while ago is the most valid argument I have heard on this topic. Barry Bonds has the most career homeruns, and most home runs in a season, and he is most definitely not the greatest baseball player ever. Gretzky may have more points than Lemieux, but that does not matter. Gretzky was the kind of player where you might not really notice him that much and at the end of the game he had 2 or 3 assists and a goal. When Lemieux was on the ice you noticed him every shift, he was dynamic every time he touched the puck. Numbers are numbers, a players overall effect on the game is how you can rank their greatness. So I say Lemieux, Orr, then Gretzky as the 3 greatest of all time, in that order.
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hanley6
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
662 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  09:06:04  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Gretzky
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fat_elvis_rocked
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
899 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  10:02:38  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for all the responses Willus.

I see that it is more a matter of personal choice than relevance based on your rebuttals, and I agree that Orr, could indeed be called the greatest of all time. But, since the point is infinitely arguable, with way too many parameters to consider, I can only stick to my guns and say in my opinion, based on my parameters, Gretzky is the man, as you can say Orr, others can say Lemieux and so on.
I'm not sure where conjecture fits in with the evaluations but what the hey! If you prefer to think of Gretzky as you do, one can only respect your opinion, and hope that you are wrong regarding the view of 'real hockey can only be played if you hit, or are not a chick', and the league changes it's rules to protect certain players.

I certainly hope you are....
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fat_elvis_rocked
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
899 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  11:34:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Also as an addendum...It takes a very smart player to not be caught in a position where they are vulnerable to be hit. Not allowing yourself to be taken out of a play is also part of the game, a very smart part of the game. On the flipside, a smart player also chooses when to throw that hit, again, to not take themselves out of the play, it has vey little to do with 'the way the game should be played', and everytrhing to do with playing the game properly, and yes, there is a difference.

Nobody will argue that Gretzky wasn't a smart player....

But, I do remember him getting hit....Gary Suter had to throw a deliberate cross-check into the small of his back, funny, nobody beat up Suter after that play...

Come on Willus, you sound like you're a bit long in the tooth like me, surely you remember all the slow motion footage of Gretzky playing the puck off the end boards, or the net, then spinning away from the check, only to pick up the puck and make a play. That's smart hockey!

I also remember Howie Meeker stating the obvious on 'Hockey Night in Canada';
'Kids at home, if you're chasing Gretzky, you're chasing trouble!'
(sure Howie may have been approaching senility then, but still a great quote!)

Could he have played more physically defensively and on the forecheck? Probably.... but I can give you 2,857 reasons why that can be forgiven....
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Guest4631
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Posted - 01/21/2009 :  11:59:45  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by hanley6

Gretzky




wow hanley when you make such a convincing arguement like that how could any one not agree, here let me try......

Orr
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Guest4447
( )

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  12:01:21  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by fat_elvis_rocked

quote:
Originally posted by willus3


Men's hockey is a contact sport. Always has been. That is how it is supposed to be played. He had others play physical for him. Gretzky is responsible for the enforcer BS of today.





I usually give the moderator's lots of leeway with their opinions as they have been at this a lot longer, and obviously give valuable insight with their rebuttals and opinions, but this time....WTF???...

Yes men's hockey is a contact sport, if you choose to play it that way, but you mean to tell us that if you don't, you're not really a hockey player?? Ludicrous, assinine and just plain wrong.

Not taking away anything from those who do combine physicality and grace, but come on...
Was Pat Lafontaine not a hockey player? Was Jari Kurri a heavy hitter? Was Guy Lafleur, Yvonne Cournoyer, Adam Oates etc. etc. not players???
The game can be played many different ways utilizing whatever skills make the player successful. Geez!!!
Gretzky was the cause of the enforcers????
John Ferguson wasn't an enforcer? Dave Schultz wasn't? Clark Gilles didn't look after Bossy? etc.etc....again. That role has been around just a wee bit longer than Gretzky methinks...

Please, if you want to sound this silly....at least sign on with a guest account next time...then I won't be near as surprised..

PS. Be careful Willus, you keep up with this Gretzky rule this and unwritten Gretzky rule that, you actually give creedence to the argument that Gretzky is the greatest, if they had to change all these things leauge-wide just for him...
[/quote]

It is unfair to the guests to put them down like that. There are plenty of registered accounts that speak nonsense.

But your point about hockey the way it was "supposed" to be played I like. After all what is the primary goal in a hockey game? Outhit your opponent or outscore your opponent?
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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  12:04:24  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by fat_elvis_rocked

Also as an addendum...It takes a very smart player to not be caught in a position where they are vulnerable to be hit. Not allowing yourself to be taken out of a play is also part of the game, a very smart part of the game. On the flipside, a smart player also chooses when to throw that hit, again, to not take themselves out of the play, it has vey little to do with 'the way the game should be played', and everytrhing to do with playing the game properly, and yes, there is a difference.

Nobody will argue that Gretzky wasn't a smart player....

But, I do remember him getting hit....Gary Suter had to throw a deliberate cross-check into the small of his back, funny, nobody beat up Suter after that play...

Come on Willus, you sound like you're a bit long in the tooth like me, surely you remember all the slow motion footage of Gretzky playing the puck off the end boards, or the net, then spinning away from the check, only to pick up the puck and make a play. That's smart hockey!

I also remember Howie Meeker stating the obvious on 'Hockey Night in Canada';
'Kids at home, if you're chasing Gretzky, you're chasing trouble!'
(sure Howie may have been approaching senility then, but still a great quote!)

Could he have played more physically defensively and on the forecheck? Probably.... but I can give you 2,857 reasons why that can be forgiven....


Dave Keon was great at eluding checks as well but he wasn't afraid of physical hockey either. He'd mix it up with anyone.
You mention smart players throwing hits at the right time. I completely agree with that. The thing is, Gretzky didn't throw hits. If you can find me video evidence of him ever throwing a hit I would truly enjoy seeing it.
By the way, I think they hit far too often and too hard these days.

I still say Suter's hit is a borderline dirty hit. He didn't face retribution because it was an international tournament. Gretzky's bodyguards weren't there.

"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan
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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  12:13:17  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Beans15

quote:
[i]



I completely disagree. Firstly, Gretzky played more than a reasonable amount of time on the PK, and did a fine job at it. Secondly, how often did Gretzky steal the puck in the neutral zone??? Tons. I watched one game recently between the Oilers and Islanders from the 84 Cup Final. I counted 7 takeaways Gretzky had in the neutral zone. Just because he didn't dig a ton in the defensive corners and didn't play physical did not mean he was poor defensively. Gretzky played a different brand of defense than others, but it does not mean it was not effective.

And I also don't agree with you assesment of Orr's offense. If you have to measure Gretzky's defensive abilities as a forward to Orr's defensive abilities as a defensemen, then you have to compare Orr's offensive to Gretzky's straight up as well. And to that matter, if Gretzky is 100, then the next few players below him are Lemieux (95), Bossy, (90), Dionne (85). Orr and Dionne would be very close in my opinion. Orr was not as good offensively as Bossy or Lemiuex, in my humble opinion.

If we were comparing Forwards to Forwards and defensemen to defensemen, it would be different. But we are not. You can't drop Gretzky's defensive abilities and raise Orr's offensive abilities when you are calling all things equal.


A couple things. Playing on the PK does not mean a player is great defensively by any means. Pavel Bure played a ton of PK time.

Also, using a rating from 0-100 where 50 is the mean, giving Gretzky an 85 is ridiculous. An average rating would be more appropriate. He'd float out by the red line and put very little effort into backchecking.



"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan
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andyhack
PickupHockey Pro



Japan
891 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  14:57:13  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Gretzky guys getting a little edgy about Willus's comments - keep this in mind. Correct me if I am wrong Willus, but despite all your comments raising Wayne's shortcomings, you would STILL rank him VERY highly on your best ever list. You still are showing LOADS of respect to Gretzky for his offence, smartness, dodginess and overall brilliance, ranking him over many players who probably could be called better "all-round" players (players perhaps like Keon and Mikita who you probably far prefer - again, correct me if I am wrong on that - the ranking of the players I mean).

So you are simply drawing the line as to where Gretzky's shortcomings might stop his ascent on a GOAT list at a slightly different place than Beans, Fat Elvis, etc. But you are still elevating him, probably based, in part anyway, on some of the arguments brought up "ad nauseum" by them over lots of players you actually prefer.

So why are you considered such a "bad guy" on this thread? Why do you have to say each time you leave this thread, like Al Pacino, "So say good night to the bad guy?". I don't get it. I mean, it should be just the opposite. DESPITE your strong views about how hockey SHOULD be played, you still would rank Wayne very highly.

Maybe Gretzky guys need to have a "Gretsectomy" (operation which removes the fear and horror at Wayne being called anything other than "head and shoulders" above anyone else) in order to appreciate that you actually pay loads of respect to Wayne by ranking him so high on your list despite his shortcomings.
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fat_elvis_rocked
PickupHockey Pro



Canada
899 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  15:40:13  Show Profile  Reply with Quote


I hope that isn't how I'm coming across. Willus has his strong opinions and I most certainly respect that, I just think that too much is made of Gretzky couldn't/wouldn't do this and that and so on...

I choose Gretzky based on my personal choice, as I was the perfect age to watch him from the start of his career and understand his brilliance(just using that word to tweak Willus et. al. ).
What I didn't mention before is that before 1979, I considered Orr to be the greatest player ever......and I still couldn't choose one over the other if I had to take personal preference out of the equation. They were both too similar in what they did to the game of hockey. They both transcended the sport to levels that the common players had never thought of before, with Orr being the first to raise the game.
They both put up numbers that were and are still, unheard of. They are both world class ambassadors for the sport.

So for arguments sake, I'll call them both number 2, and move Tiger Williams to the top of the heap where he desrerves to be...

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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  16:04:36  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by andyhack

Gretzky guys getting a little edgy about Willus's comments - keep this in mind. Correct me if I am wrong Willus, but despite all your comments raising Wayne's shortcomings, you would STILL rank him VERY highly on your best ever list. You still are showing LOADS of respect to Gretzky for his offence, smartness, dodginess and overall brilliance, ranking him over many players who probably could be called better "all-round" players (players perhaps like Keon and Mikita who you probably far prefer - again, correct me if I am wrong on that - the ranking of the players I mean).

So you are simply drawing the line as to where Gretzky's shortcomings might stop his ascent on a GOAT list at a slightly different place than Beans, Fat Elvis, etc. But you are still elevating him, probably based, in part anyway, on some of the arguments brought up "ad nauseum" by them over lots of players you actually prefer.

So why are you considered such a "bad guy" on this thread? Why do you have to say each time you leave this thread, like Al Pacino, "So say good night to the bad guy?". I don't get it. I mean, it should be just the opposite. DESPITE your strong views about how hockey SHOULD be played, you still would rank Wayne very highly.

Maybe Gretzky guys need to have a "Gretsectomy" (operation which removes the fear and horror at Wayne being called anything other than "head and shoulders" above anyone else) in order to appreciate that you actually pay loads of respect to Wayne by ranking him so high on your list despite his shortcomings.



Much like Bobby Orr, you never cease to impress me Andyhack.
It's nice that at least someone gets it. Gretzky is 4th on my list, hardly insulting to be 4th all time. But say that and point out why and you get labeled a hater or some such thing. I think the Gretzky types get upset for that very reason. You can point out weaknesses in his game. There were no weaknesses in Orr's game.

"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan
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Guest2383
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Posted - 01/21/2009 :  18:17:56  Reply with Quote
Clearly its Treeeevor Lindon.
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8176 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2009 :  18:51:44  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I just like debating with Willus. Reason being, I always learn something from anything we have ever debated. (That is intended as straight respect as I think between he and Andyhack, my knowledge of the old game has increase significantly) Is it my opinion that he is harder on Gretzky than other players?? Yep. But that doesn't make the opinion right or wrong. Just different than mine.

I think it's just a little bit of a stretch to say that Orr had zero weakness in his game. More than anything else, because it's impossible. No weakness kind of refers to him being a perfect player. Was he?? No, not possible. Some could argue that there were times where he insisted on carrying the puck rather than passing it. Some could argue that his reckless style of play was actually detrimental to his ability to continue to play the game. I would bet that if a player in today's NHL took the kind of risks with their body that Orr did, he would be coached away from it. And I would bet that if Mr. Orr was asked himself if he would trade a few of those crazy rushes for even a few more healthy seasons, he would agree. Also, some could argue that Orr's offensive rushes often put him out of position defensively. He often had the skating ability to get back in time, but not every time.

And to not get to deep into this, I am not trying to knock Orr or his brilliance. As I stated above with my crazy, half hung-over GOAT formula, Orr and Gretzky are on even keel. Find any other guy between the ages of 30-40 who lived in Edmonton through the 80's and was(is) an Oiler fan to give anyone other than Gretzky that much credit. It's rare.

I want to just throw something out about Gretzky's "floating around the red line," comment. I have a difficult time with this for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I strongly feel that he was coached into this style of play, and especially with the Oilers. You can't fault a guy for doing what he is coached to do. Secondly, neutral zone defense is every bit at important as defensive zone defense. A team can't score if they can't get into the defensive end can they?? Recently watching some older Oiler games, Gretzky rarely gotten beaten in the neutral zone one on one. A piece of his game that many people forget is that his gift of being in the right place in the right time offensively was also there defensively. He was brilliant at the hook from behind in the neutral zone (which was perfectly legal at the time) as well as stealing passes in the neutral zone. He often broke up plays or set up he team mates to easily break up plays. It’s unfortunate that he wasn’t more physical while doing this as he would be higher heralded on the “Willus List” if he was.

Because of that, he does rank above average defensively. In my humblest of opinions.

And finally, if you made it to the end of this tirade, Willus you once gave me the pleasure of a DVD copy of a Boston/Toronto game from the 70’s which really showcased Orr. I have a number of Oiler games from the 80’s on DVD (far better quality than my old, self recorded games on VHS). I would be glad to return the favor if you wish. Drop me an e-mail if you are interested.
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Guest9673
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Posted - 01/21/2009 :  18:57:02  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by andyhack

Gretzky guys getting a little edgy about Willus's comments - keep this in mind. Correct me if I am wrong Willus, but despite all your comments raising Wayne's shortcomings, you would STILL rank him VERY highly on your best ever list. You still are showing LOADS of respect to Gretzky for his offence, smartness, dodginess and overall brilliance, ranking him over many players who probably could be called better "all-round" players (players perhaps like Keon and Mikita who you probably far prefer - again, correct me if I am wrong on that - the ranking of the players I mean).


Not all are edgy about WG being 4th or what ever it is on the GOAT list. Each person has their idea of what is important to the game and how a player plays to that ideal. I guess some just don't see it that way and would like to argue or to better understand perspectives.

I for one, am willing to agree that Orr is 1b to Gretz 1a (or vice versa). But to say Gretz is 4th is just as mind boggling as saying Orr is 4th on the all time list.
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Beans15
Moderator



Canada
8176 Posts

Posted - 01/22/2009 :  06:10:45  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Interesting points Willus, as always.

I will definately keep my eye open for the Gretzky covering his face. Something I have not noticed.

But I might agree. Gretzky was so afraid of the puck, he always wanted to get it into a safe place. And the safest place on the rink is in the back of the net!!!
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Guest6192
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Posted - 01/31/2009 :  20:39:28  Reply with Quote
Richard was amazing. Their is a trophy named after him. there is none for gretzky,lemueix,orr, messier,lafleur,howe.
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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 02/01/2009 :  10:46:47  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Beans, what did you do to my last post? It appears you edited it and none of my comments are there.

"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan
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willus3
Moderator



Canada
1948 Posts

Posted - 02/01/2009 :  10:48:18  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Now the post is gone completely. ???

"Society, have mercy on me. Hope you're not angry if I disagree." - Jerry Hannan
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