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50 for 50 - Best Sabre Players of All-Time

Sabres 12-15 (Please vote for 4)  

52 members have voted

  1. 1. Sabres 12-15 (Please vote for 4)

    • Miller
    • Barrasso
      0
    • Edwards
      0
    • Schoenfeld
    • Hajt
      0
    • Korab
    • McKee
      0
    • Playfair
      0
    • Zhitnik
      0
    • Bodger
      0
    • Luce
    • Hawerchuk
    • Turgeon
    • Briere
    • Drury
      0
    • Eichel
    • Satan
      0
    • Vanek
    • Pominville
    • Peca
    • Foligno
    • Other
      0


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34 minutes ago, tom webster said:

“Probably?” In top 50?

I made a personal list before starting this thread and he is well in the top 50.  At 50 we’ll start debating where Christian Ruuttu fits in

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3 hours ago, GASabresIUFAN said:

I made a personal list before starting this thread and he is well in the top 50.  At 50 we’ll start debating where Christian Ruuttu fits in

More like where Derek Roy fits in.

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1 hour ago, ubkev said:

More like where Derek Roy fits in.

Roy and Ruuttu are similar except I think Roy played here longer and is of more recent vintage.  

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I think Dom was a better goalie than Gilbert was a center, in terms of being at or close to the all-time best at the position.

However, I think a franchise, HOF-level center is harder to find, and thus more valuable, than a franchise, HOF-level goalie.

In other words:  if I were constructing a team, would I rather have, say, the 2nd-best goalie of all time or the 9th-best center of all time?

I think in a draft I'd take the center because I'd still get a great freaking goalie on my next pick, while the dropoff from the center I would get in the first round to the one I would get in the next round would be greater and more debilitating to my team.

So I'm taking Gilbert.

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53 minutes ago, nfreeman said:

I think Dom was a better goalie than Gilbert was a center, in terms of being at or close to the all-time best at the position.

However, I think a franchise, HOF-level center is harder to find, and thus more valuable, than a franchise, HOF-level goalie.

In other words:  if I were constructing a team, would I rather have, say, the 2nd-best goalie of all time or the 9th-best center of all time?

I think in a draft I'd take the center because I'd still get a great freaking goalie on my next pick, while the dropoff from the center I would get in the first round to the one I would get in the next round would be greater and more debilitating to my team.

So I'm taking Gilbert.

I don’t think Gilbert is in anyone’s top ten of best centers of all time. Also, Hasek is probably ranked #1 in more polls than #2

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2 hours ago, nfreeman said:

I think Dom was a better goalie than Gilbert was a center, in terms of being at or close to the all-time best at the position.

However, I think a franchise, HOF-level center is harder to find, and thus more valuable, than a franchise, HOF-level goalie.

In other words:  if I were constructing a team, would I rather have, say, the 2nd-best goalie of all time or the 9th-best center of all time?

I think in a draft I'd take the center because I'd still get a great freaking goalie on my next pick, while the dropoff from the center I would get in the first round to the one I would get in the next round would be greater and more debilitating to my team.

So I'm taking Gilbert.

I don’t really agree with these assertions.  

There could be no bigger drop off between players than existed between prime Hasek and whoever is #2.  I also don’t think an elite C is more valuable or harder to find than an elite G.  Also doubt Gilbert is in top 10 on many all-time C lists.

Still, I voted Gil #1 because the poll was for best Sabre, not best player.  In that sense, I think being the first draft pick and career Sabre at the franchises start means something.

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3 hours ago, nfreeman said:

I think Dom was a better goalie than Gilbert was a center, in terms of being at or close to the all-time best at the position.

However, I think a franchise, HOF-level center is harder to find, and thus more valuable, than a franchise, HOF-level goalie.

In other words:  if I were constructing a team, would I rather have, say, the 2nd-best goalie of all time or the 9th-best center of all time?

I think in a draft I'd take the center because I'd still get a great freaking goalie on my next pick, while the dropoff from the center I would get in the first round to the one I would get in the next round would be greater and more debilitating to my team.

So I'm taking Gilbert.

Ehh...what are the numbers on Cs in the Hall vs Goalies?

1 hour ago, Curt said:

I don’t really agree with these assertions.  

There could be no bigger drop off between players than existed between prime Hasek and whoever is #2.  I also don’t think an elite C is more valuable or harder to find than an elite G.  Also doubt Gilbert is in top 10 on many all-time C lists.

Still, I voted Gil #1 because the poll was for best Sabre, not best player.  In that sense, I think being the first draft pick and career Sabre at the franchises start means something.

To me the easiest distinction is Greatest vs Best. Removes a bit of the confusion, and it's why these list are usually titled with "Greatest" as it allows a bunch of factors to be considered whereas "best" seems to speak directly and specifically to talent. Hasek was still the best Sabre, no one dominated like he did while wearing the jersey. But Gil was arguably the greatest Sabre, for the reasons you listed.

Connor McDavid, surely, is a better hockey player than Gretzky ever was, if you lined them up side by side (not speaking relatively, here). But he's not close to Wayne's greatness yet. 

This poll says Best though, and Hasek was the best, so I voted Hasek. 

Edited by Thorny

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On 10/7/2019 at 1:21 PM, Weave said:

Hopefully you meant Dom and not that meathead from the great Satan.  😁

As for the sentiment above, I wholeheartedly agree.  I can’t vote a guy “top” when he forced his way out the way Dom did.  I’ll grudgingly call him #2 only because there is noone else remotely in the conversation.

NS approves of the bolded phrase.  (insert something here).

-----

The second best Sabre ever, in my humble opinion, was Gare.  Maybe we should have an 'other' option and then a way to pencil it in there for each poll?  In order for my vote to count I have no option but to vote for '11' twice, just like in the good ol' days in Chicago.

Edited by New Scotland (NS)
I also agree with your issues with Dom

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Side Note ...  I’m with Tom Webster on Turgeon’s value.  I’m trying to remember if I was this thoughtful during our first trip down this road two years ago.

He put up about 700 more NHL points than Lafontaine did after the trade ... Patty was great, but we paid dearly.

Edited by Neo

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1 hour ago, New Scotland (NS) said:

NS approves of the bolded phrase.  (insert something here).

-----

The second best Sabre ever, in my humble opinion, was Gare.  Maybe we should have an 'other' option and then a way to pencil it in there for each poll?  In order for my vote to count I have no option but to vote for '11' twice, just like in the good ol' days in Chicago.

I added Gare for you, but he's really at the tail of the ten.

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2 minutes ago, GASabresIUFAN said:

I added Gare for you, but he's really at the tail of the ten.

Thank you, my friend.

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I always liked Turgeon, too.  Maybe the biggest strike against him in assessing his value was that the Sabres failed to win a playoff series in his 5 years.

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3 hours ago, Thorny said:

Ehh...what are the numbers on Cs in the Hall vs Goalies?

To me the easiest distinction is Greatest vs Best. Removes a bit of the confusion, and it's why these list are usually titled with "Greatest" as it allows a bunch of factors to be considered whereas "best" seems to speak directly and specifically to talent. Hasek was still the best Sabre, no one dominated like he did while wearing the jersey. But Gil was arguably the greatest Sabre, for the reasons you listed.

Connor McDavid, surely, is a better hockey player than Gretzky ever was, if you lined them up side by side (not speaking relatively, here). But he's not close to Wayne's greatness yet. 

This poll says Best though, and Hasek was the best, so I voted Hasek. 

I took it like @Curt with the point of emphasis on “Sabre” over “player”

To me, the overriding factor for this poll is what that player did in blue and gold. Talent and statistical dominance is important, but not more important than longevity, participation in great franchise moments, and, most importantly, his connection with the fans.

For all his skill, Turgeon is only 23rd on the all-time Sabres points list, right there with Drew Stafford. And he is just 72nd in the all-time games played list. He was part of just 7 playoff wins, and not one playoff series win. His third year was one of the all time best franchise statistical seasons for both the team and an individual, but the team choked in the playoffs and none of the other three Sabres teams he played for provided any lasting memories. People got on him while he was here for being the “tin man” - highly skilled but unable to deliver the goods in the big moment. I really respected his talent, and thought he was generally underrated. Similar, in a way, to Thomas Vanek, who I consider a better Sabre.

Sorry for the tangent. back to your point, Hasek is without a doubt the best, using your definition. I would argue that he sits with Lemieux, Orr and Howe and under only Gretzky in the tier of all-time hockey players.

Even using my definition, he is still a close number two and only behind Bert because of the way he departed. But Perreault isn’t just about longevity. He may have been the most talented centre between Esposito and Gretzky. People who focus on the great Hasek runs of the late ‘90s can’t forget that Perreault’s Sabres had similar runs in the ‘70s, and his teams remain the franchise’s best.

Edited by dudacek

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Here’s some interesting bits of trivia:

32 men have scored 100 goals in a Sabres uniform.

One of them is currently playing for the team and another current player should join him on that list this year.

Six current Sabres are among the team’s top 100 goal scorers of all time.

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I think I will close this poll Thursday afternoon and add 3rd and 4th polls late Thursday.  Besides Gare any other nominations for the next polls?  Turgeon, Hawerchuk, Miller, Schoenfeld, Ramsey, or Robert?

Edited by GASabresIUFAN

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10 minutes ago, GASabresIUFAN said:

I think I will close this poll Thursday afternoon and add 3rd and 4th polls late Thursday.  Besides Gare any other nominations for the next polls?

Schoenfeld, Robert and Craig Ramsay from the ‘75 team?

And the demographic here probably demands some ‘06 action: Miller, Briere, Drury?

Foligno, Pominville and Luce are top-10 all-time scorers. Ray, Hajt and Zhitnik top-10 all-time games played.

Edited by dudacek

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10 hours ago, nfreeman said:

I think Dom was a better goalie than Gilbert was a center, in terms of being at or close to the all-time best at the position.

However, I think a franchise, HOF-level center is harder to find, and thus more valuable, than a franchise, HOF-level goalie.

In other words:  if I were constructing a team, would I rather have, say, the 2nd-best goalie of all time or the 9th-best center of all time?

I think in a draft I'd take the center because I'd still get a great freaking goalie on my next pick, while the dropoff from the center I would get in the first round to the one I would get in the next round would be greater and more debilitating to my team.

So I'm taking Gilbert.

Dominic Hasek's teams beat Patrick Roy's teams each time they played when it mattered.  (Olympics & Western Conference Finals). (Sadly, when he could have done it for the Sabres, Muckler chose to start an injured Fuhr all 4 games.). Having number 2 isn't as good as having the best of all time.  And, Hasek was the best of all time.  (Roy and Brodeur, the common choices for 2nd or 3rd were not better than him.). And, yes, Brodeur 's Devils beat Don's Sabres but that was vs a depleted Sabres squad (no LaFontaine) & in the greatest goaltending exhibition ever, Dom didn't blink even after 70 shots.

Perreault was the best passer of the '70's and got his lunch handed to him every single game in Filly for about 8 years including 3 games in the middle where a win or 2 could have been try historic. 

Hasek carried teams that had no business being in the playoffs to conference and league finals.  Had the league followed it's own procedures in '99 to determine whether plays were legal or not and to actually call plays by what was in the rulebook, we might have already had a parade 20 years ago.

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I am very biased but to me hasek is not just best sabre, he is best goaltender of all time in any era, any team. In fact, I might go as far as saying the most crucial player on his teams, more than any other single player, ever

Remember the early 90s Sabres, if they got 1 goal sabres had a good chance of winning and if they got 2, it would be the same as 10. The opposition was not coming back

Edited by miles
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On 10/7/2019 at 2:58 PM, tom webster said:

Turgeon played in more games with Buffalo then LaFontaine and averaged over a point per game and that includes his rookie year. He also didn’t have 89 on his wing.

In his three full years in Buffalo he averaged 1.14 points per game, and in his prime years with the Islanders, he averaged 1.33 points per game.

For my money, Rick Martin, Danny Game and Mike Ramsey were better Sabre’s. 
And I loved Patty. 

Turgeon is the highest scoring NHL player not in the HOF.  

Turgeon had great stats but his actual “game” was not great.  He was never on a Sabres team that made it out of the first round of the playoffs, not that it was all on him but his game lacked the grit required for playoff success. 

 

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I’m a Perreault guy but I chose Dom because being the league MVP is a greater accomplishment. He carried some decent teams deep into the playoffs.

This list will be tough, I’m already second guessing my first choice.

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1 hour ago, Pimlach said:

Turgeon is the highest scoring NHL player not in the HOF.  

Turgeon had great stats but his actual “game” was not great.  He was never on a Sabres team that made it out of the first round of the playoffs, not that it was all on him but his game lacked the grit required for playoff success. 

 

Rewatch the series against the Bruins his rookie year and tell me he didn’t do everything he could.

I have nothing to back this up but I’m betting he would have been an “ analytics” superstar. You don’t score the goals he did without an inner strength and underlying toughness and you don’t record the points he did without huge possession numbers.

By the way, he was a point per game player in playoffs until his two years in Dallas. 

Edited by tom webster

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17 minutes ago, French Collection said:

I’m a Perreault guy but I chose Dom because being the league MVP is a greater accomplishment. He carried some decent teams deep into the playoffs.

This list will be tough, I’m already second guessing my first choice.

Just wait until we get out of the top 20.  

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8 minutes ago, GASabresIUFAN said:

Just wait until we get out of the top 20.  

Our lack of success is going to become very apparent very quick once whipping boys show up in the teens. 

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5 minutes ago, #freejame said:

Our lack of success is going to become very apparent very quick once whipping boys show up in the teens. 

I don’t think that’s too uncommon.  Fan bases often blame their better players for the team’s lack of success.

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2 minutes ago, Curt said:

I don’t think that’s too uncommon.  Fan bases often blame their better players for the team’s lack of success.

While I agree, I would say it’s more with in-between players. 

People will usually expect their borderline guys to rank up rather than down. The guy who *should* be doing more—whether it be stars like Housleys and Eichels, AAAA players, or the Staffords and Roys of the world. 

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