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dudacek

Building the best Sabres team ever

Which of these coaches, in their prime, would you most want coaching your team?  

6 members have voted

  1. 1. Which of these coaches, in their prime, would you most want coaching your team?

    • Joe Crozier
      0
    • Floyd Smith
      0
    • Scotty Bowman
    • Rick Dudley
      0
    • Ted Nolan
      0
    • Lindy Ruff
    • Ralph Krueger
      0
  2. 2. Which of these GMs, in their prime, would you most want building your team?

    • Punch Imlach
    • Scotty Bowman
    • Gerry Meehan
      0
    • John Muckler
      0
    • Darcy Regier
      0


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We've done polls on the best Sabres ever, but teams aren't built with stars alone, they have a variety of players used in a variety of roles: snipers, grinders, playmakers.

This thread is designed to build the perfect Sabre team, role by role. Basically, I'll identify a role, and a handful of Sabres who seem best-suited for that role. You vote for the one player you'd like to cast in that role as you build your perfect Sabre team.

We start with two polls and will add new polls every day or two until we have built a complete 21-man roster:

Poll #1: the franchise centre

This is that rare elite player who provides world-class talent with the gamebreaking ability to carry a team on his back. He can score, set other guys up, and elevate the play of those around him. He is the guy the opponent game plans against and you want on the ice with the game on the line.

Poll #2: the 1B centre

Perhaps not elite, but capable of filling that role in a pinch. Basically, an elite 2C — the offensively-gifted guy who has most of the attributes of the franchise centre, and would be a 1C on all but the most elite teams.

Have at it.

Edited by dudacek

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Eleven and Dale10 in this poll, but I would start with Dom (it pains me a bit to say it) and go from there.

 

Edited by New Scotland (NS)
patience ... I will wait for the goalie poll

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33 minutes ago, dudacek said:

We've done polls on the best Sabres ever, but teams aren't built with stars alone, they have a variety of players used in a variety of roles: snipers, grinders, playmakers.

This thread is designed to build the perfect Sabre team, role by role. Basically, I'll identify a role, and a handful of Sabres who seem best-suited for that role. You vote for the one player you'd like to cast in that role as you build your perfect Sabre team.

We start with two polls and will add new polls every day or two until we have built a complete 21-man roster:

Poll #1: the franchise centre

This is that rare elite player who provides world-class talent with the gamebreaking ability to carry a team on his back. He can score, set other guys up, and elevate the play of those around him. He is the guy the opponent game plans against and you want on the ice with the game on the line.

Poll #2: the 1B centre

Perhaps not elite, but capable of filling that role in a pinch. Basically, an elite 2C — the offensively-gifted guy who has most of the attributes of the franchise centre, and would be a 1C on all but the most elite teams.

Have at it.

All have access to the same level of nutrition, training, equipment, medical care, etc., whatever that level may be?

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3 minutes ago, Eleven said:

All have access to the same level of nutrition, training, equipment, medical care, etc., whatever that level may be?

I’d think you have to look at it that way, given the advancements made in the game over the years, otherwise it turns into a “players are so much better in this era...” conversation.

Basically it’s impossible to remove a player from his era, so you can only rank him in the context of the rest of the league in that era.

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3 minutes ago, dudacek said:

I’d think you have to look at it that way, given the advancements made in the game over the years, otherwise it turns into a “players are so much better in this era...” conversation.

Basically it’s impossible to remove a player from his era, so you can only rank him in the context of the rest of the league in that era.

Thanks.  Armed with that information, I went with Perreault and Hawerchuk.

I forgot how much different even the rules were when Perreault played.  That whistle went every time the puck was frozen against the boards!

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I’m going to break ranks here, and betray my 10-year-old self.

Perreault remains the all-time Sabre, but Lafontaine had a certain elevated aura that he was going to find a way that Bert was lacking. I think he was a better leader and a better big-game player. Perreault had a better Sabre career, but the poll asks who you want in his prime. For me, that’s a healthy, mid-90s Patty.

I don’t think Jack will get much support here, but that’s more a product of this desolate era than his ability. He’s on par with the other two as a talent and this year his performance level reached their strata.

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30 minutes ago, dudacek said:

I’m going to break ranks here, and betray my 10-year-old self.

Perreault remains the all-time Sabre, but Lafontaine had a certain elevated aura that he was going to find a way that Bert was lacking. I think he was a better leader and a better big-game player. Perreault had a better Sabre career, but the poll asks who you want in his prime. For me, that’s a healthy, mid-90s Patty.

I don’t think Jack will get much support here, but that’s more a product of this desolate era than his ability. He’s on par with the other two as a talent and this year his performance level reached their strata.

If it weren't for his predisposition to get concussed I would have went for LaLa here.  He had concussion problems when he first came into the league, so IMO they have to be taken into consideration.  He was not concussion free at any point in his career.  IMO it was the only flaw he had.

I think jack is approaching LaLa, but isn't there yet. And there is no guarantee he gets there. Likely, but no guarantee.   He'll be our 2nd best center in franchise history, because I predict he most likely will surpass LaFontaine in sheer talent and ability.  I don't think he rises to Perreault level when his career ends.

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Gil owns my heart.

Patty and Dale ...  

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I voted for the 2 French-Canadians.

PLF was great, and maybe it's unfair to penalize him for his injury history, but he played in 268 games for the Sabres -- so about 3.25 seasons.  And he was good in the playoffs, to be sure, but he only played in 3 playoff seasons for the Sabres, in which they got bounced in the 1st round twice and in the 2nd round the 3rd time. 

Bert had 103 points in 90 playoff games for the Sabres, during which they won 9 rounds.  So I don't agree that PLF was the better clutch player of the 2 of them.

As for Briere, he was simply one of the best clutch players in NHL history.

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Impressive Gil playoff information ...

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Perreault in his prime was amazing.

Team Canada players he played with have raved about his talent in the best on best tournaments.

Hawerchuk in his prime (Jets) was one of the best players after Gretzky and Lemieux.  
6 of his first 7 seasons he scored over 100 pts.

Edited by French Collection
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2 minutes ago, French Collection said:

Perreault in his prime was amazing.

Team Canada players he played with have raved about his talent in the best on best tournaments.

Hawerchuk in his prime was one of the best players after Gretzky and Lemieux.

Yeah, it shouldn't be close.  Those two should be head and shoulders above the competition.

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Turgeon was an elite talent, clever hands, superior vision.

Briere had the it factor and a competitive fire that burned white hot.

Hawerchuk had both.

21 minutes ago, French Collection said:

Perreault in his prime was amazing.

Team Canada players he played with have raved about his talent in the best on best tournaments.

Perreault on left wing with Gretzky and Lafleur in 81 was as impressive a performance as I have ever seen.

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2 hours ago, nfreeman said:

I voted for the 2 French-Canadians.

PLF was great, and maybe it's unfair to penalize him for his injury history, but he played in 268 games for the Sabres -- so about 3.25 seasons.  And he was good in the playoffs, to be sure, but he only played in 3 playoff seasons for the Sabres, in which they got bounced in the 1st round twice and in the 2nd round the 3rd time. 

Bert had 103 points in 90 playoff games for the Sabres, during which they won 9 rounds.  So I don't agree that PLF was the better clutch player of the 2 of them.

As for Briere, he was simply one of the best clutch players in NHL history.

For me this isn’t about longevity.

Perreault was usually good to very good on many excellent teams that underachieved in the playoffs. His only remarkable playoff run was 1980, 21 points in 14 games, leading the NHL when he was eliminated. In the 5 years prior to that, when we needed him to step up and take us on a run, he was under a point per game in 4 of those years, 38 points in 43 games overall.

Lafontaine only really had two playoff opportunities with a much worse team, but his numbers were impeccable: 8 goals in 7 games in the first, and 12 points in 7 games in the second.

Edited by dudacek

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You could probably make arguments there were times when both Gil and Patty were the 2nd best players in the world: Gil after Lafleur, Pat after Mario.

I still think there can be a time when we will be able to make that claim for Jack, but we will probably need a 2C and a mature Dahlin to allow that to happen.

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What say old timers about Marcel Dionne?  OT, admittedly....

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Just now, Neo said:

What say old timers about Marcel Dionne?  OT, admittedly....

Right up there with Perreault.

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35 minutes ago, Neo said:

What say old timers about Marcel Dionne?  OT, admittedly....

He put up some great numbers and lasted a long time.

I never thought he was as skilled as Perreault and Lafleur, but he was effective. He was also on some weak west coast teams and didn’t get as much recognition as the others. My visual of him is a skating fire hydrant with great hands.

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I read Gretzky's book of hockey tales recently. He mentioned that he skated around pretending to be Perreault on his backyard rink, but only for a little bit - it was clear to him that he would never skate like Gilbert, that he would be a completely different player. 

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15 hours ago, Neo said:

What say old timers about Marcel Dionne?  OT, admittedly....

One of the best ever, but he played in the vast wasteland of LA for most of it, so he was underviewed and under appreciated.

If he could have played in Montreal he would be remembered muchly, as would be Gilbert11.

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On 4/4/2020 at 2:56 PM, dudacek said:

Perreault remains the all-time Sabre, but Lafontaine had a certain elevated aura that he was going to find a way that Bert was lacking. I think he was a better leader and a better big-game player. Perreault had a better Sabre career, but the poll asks who you want in his prime. For me, that’s a healthy, mid-90s Patty

Agreed.  Plus, Perreault caught periodic heat for taking nights off.  Lafontaine was perpetually solid when healthy.

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Gil had the best lateral skating I've ever seen.  If you were a defenseman, you had to guess which way he was going, because one crossover stride and he was by you.

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Your choices in the first polls are Gilbert and Dale.

Screen Shot 2020-04-06 at 12.31.44 PM.png

 

The second set of polls are up:

Poll # 3: The goal scorer

This is obvious: the finisher, the man who can put the puck in the net whenever, wherever, however.

Poll #4: The power forward

This is a player the Sabres haven't had a ton of over the years: the warrior and physical specimen who can hand out and absorb a beating, keeping defencemen nervous while still producing top-six offence.

Edited by dudacek

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If I needed a goal and one tough SOB, Gare.  If I had to go to war with the Bruins or Flyers, Dudley.

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Wow I feel like we're missing some options here.  For needing a desperate goal, I might want Drury.  For a series against the Bruins or Flyers, I might want Mike Peca.

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