Monday, November 12, 2007

The Greatest Generation

Today, possibly the best class ever will be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. The class consists of Mark Messier, Ron Francis, Scott Stevens, Al MacInnis, and Jim Gregory (will be placed in the builder category).

They have 11 Stanley Cups to their records. 12 major awards. Countless All-Star Games.

Let's play the "What If Game" for a minute. What if you were a GM looking for a player to build your team around. Which one of these players would it be?

Mark Messier (1982-2004) - 1,756 GP, 694 G, 1,193 A, 1,887 Pts, +210, 1,910 PIM
Scott Stevens (1982-2004) - 1,635 GP, 196 G, 712 A, 908 Pts, +393, 2,785 PIM
Al MacInnis (1981-2004) - 1,416 GP, 340 G, 934 A, 1,274 Pts, +374, 1,501 PIM
Ron Francis (1981-2004) - 1,731 GP, 549 G, 1,249 A, 1,798 Pts, -10, 979 PIM

For me, I have to take Al MacInnis. He could do everything from penalty kill, lead the power play, and bolster the blue line. The Inverness, N.S. native consistently had over a 100-mph shot. Imagine what he could do with composite instead of wood, today? Yikes.

I had the previlege of watching all of these players play in-person. The most exciting player, I thought, was Scott Stevens. You never know when he was going to catch someone with his head down.

Just ask Paul Kariya or Eric Lindros.

Check out Scott's Top Ten Hits below.


Anonymous said...

Al MacInnis was a great player, but Mark Messier was a great player and a once in a lifetime leader - 6 Stanley Cups. Besides those geat Oiler teams, he lead the often hilarious to watch NY Rangers to their first Stanley Cup in 54 years in 1994 - and they haven't won since.

Kcaryths said...

I think Messier is the choice for me as well, though obviously any of these guys would be a great choice.

But "the look" that Messier had once he stepped up the intensity level was incredible. He could score he could smash people and he'd even let loose the odd well timed elbow if the situation called for it.

The complete player!

Anonymous said...

Boy Mess was an amazing guy. Always playing with grit and skill. That cup he won in 94 will always be one of the great hockey moments.

Anonymous said...

Scott Stevens more exciting the Messier? Are you crazy?

Golden Hurricane said...

Are you kidding? You'd take MacInnis to start your team over Messier? Did you forget the 6 Stanley Cups Messier won? He was twice the player in the locker room that he was on the ice, and he's probably the second greatest player on the ice. MacInnis was good, but I don't think we'll ever see another player in the mold of Messier. The combination of talent and leadership is unparalleled.