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stevieisthebest

Bleacher Reports Top 5 Captains of All Time

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Messier not deserving?

6 Cups.

Messier's natural hatty leading the come from behind in the guarantee game was monumental.

First and ONLY person to Captain two different teams to Cup wins.

Edited by Xitium

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following your logic Matt Cooke along with Chris Pronger are the best leaders right now.

Then you're not following it well.

Playing against Clarke taught me that there was a compete level and desire to win that went way beyond anything I had ever experienced before. If Clarke's actions on the ice could instill that kind of knowledge in me then it could certainly rub off against players of any level, including his teammates. If they're smart enough to realize it, they have been taught that there is a level of desire to win that goes way beyond what they've probably had within themselves in the past and they have room to up their game to a whole new level. This is about the level of desire to succeed, not about tactics.

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Am I the only one bothered by the fact that Bleacher Report is just a giant collection of amateur blogs? Legitimate (if you can still even call them that...) are bad enough, but some of the blogs on that site are just dripping with stupidity; armchair drivel at its best. I'm fine with the idea of people having a blog and a voice, but I think it gets fuzzy when they start trying to pass themselves off as proper journalists when they blatantly are not beholden to the same standards of integrity and accuracy.

That's pretty much exactly what I was gonna say. It's a fun site to read every now and then, but in general there's a ton of idiots there.

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Messier not deserving?

6 Cups.

Messier's natural hatty leading the come from behind in the guarantee game was monumental.

First and ONLY person to Captain two different teams to Cup wins.

Messier won 2 Cups as a Captain.

The fact it was with 2 different teams is more of a trivia thing than meaningful because most great captains stick to one team for the majority of their careers and are not hired guns.

Besides, Messier's Rangers had 8 players from his Cup year with the Oilers... That's actually more of the same 'team' than Sakic and Stevens had between their first and last Cup wins.

Finally, Vancouver fans absolutely despise Messier, even to this day. How many of the greatest captains ever are hated by a fan base they captained?

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Finally, Vancouver fans absolutely despise Messier, even to this day. How many of the greatest captains ever are hated by a fan base they captained?

:clap:

Messier was a cancer to the Canucks organization and was present through the three darkest years of the Canucks franchise. I swear to God that if I ever see a guy wearing a Canucks Messier jersey I will offer him $1,000 just so I can get it out of circulation. Then I will light it on fire and piss on it. Finally, I will bury it out back in the compost heap for the worms to do the rest.

And I ain't kidding. Messier was all about Messier and getting a fat paycheck when he was here. He didn't care who he hurt or whose toes he stepped on or whose careers he f***ed up. Messier was not about the team. Messier was about Messier. Piss on Mark Messier.

(I just reread those two paragraphs and I'm a little concerned that I didn't get my point across quite strong enough)

xtrememachine1 likes this

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Messier = greatly overrated as a leader.

That's all I can say, because the rest of you have said it pretty well.

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Some players not mentioned who captained teams during the same era as Gretzky and Messier who were better captains are Ray Bourque, Joe Nieuwendyk, Scott Stevens, Denis Potvin, Doug Gilmour, Trevor Linden, Ron Francis.

It's tough for me to include the guys that never won a Cup as captain amongst the all-time greats.

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I also think the 94 thing is overrated. Messier was great in those playoffs, but not as great as Leetch and Richter were for them.

Also, as egroen mentioned, half their roster comprised of former Oiler players. They didn't have to rebuild from scratch at any point.

Finally, don't forget that Messier wasn't even the captain for his first 9 or so years in Edmonton. Gretzky was the captain, and Messier basically inherited a very talented team to lead. He never had to lead a team from the dumps into the promise land. Good leader and a top 5 captain, but not the best captain ever.

As for Vancouver, I know that didn't turn out well, but that team was never a Cup contender. They could never challenge Detroit, Dallas, Colorado, Philly or New Jersey. No one should have expected otherwise.

Edited by GMRwings1983

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I also think the 94 thing is overrated. Messier was great in those playoffs, but not as great as Leetch and Richter were for them.

Also, as egroen mentioned, half their roster comprised of former Oiler players. They didn't have to rebuild from scratch at any point.

Finally, don't forget that Messier wasn't even the captain for his first 9 or so years in Edmonton. Gretzky was the captain, and Messier basically inherited a very talented team to lead. He never had to lead a team from the dumps into the promise land. Good leader and a top 5 captain, but not the best captain ever.

As for Vancouver, I know that didn't turn out well, but that team was never a Cup contender. They could never challenge Detroit, Dallas, Colorado, Philly or New Jersey. No one should have expected otherwise.

There were six regulars on the 1994 Rangers who were regulars on the 1990 Oilers. The 1994 Rangers also had several key players who were Rangers when the Oilers won, such as Conn Smythe winner Brian Leetch and goaltender Mike Richter.

By comparison, the 1988 Oilers had nine players who were also regulars on the 1984 Oilers.

Messier's leadership in 1994 extended no further than saying "Hey guys, we did this before, right?" and then Richter and Leetch led the team with solid performance and one great moment from Messier. His leadership in 1990 is exaggerated because it's "look, wow, the Oilers won the Cup without Gretzky! Messier is TEH LEADER!!" when the Oilers wouldn't have even won their division if Ranford hadn't closed and locked the goal.

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It's tough for me to include the guys that never won a Cup as captain amongst the all-time greats.

Scott Stevens did win a cup, 3 of them

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Scott Stevens did win a cup, 3 of them

I think he was referring to Bourque, Gilmour, and Linden.

None of whom I claimed were among the best ever; just better than Gretzky or Messier.

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There were six regulars on the 1994 Rangers who were regulars on the 1990 Oilers. The 1994 Rangers also had several key players who were Rangers when the Oilers won, such as Conn Smythe winner Brian Leetch and goaltender Mike Richter.

By comparison, the 1988 Oilers had nine players who were also regulars on the 1984 Oilers.

Messier's leadership in 1994 extended no further than saying "Hey guys, we did this before, right?" and then Richter and Leetch led the team with solid performance and one great moment from Messier. His leadership in 1990 is exaggerated because it's "look, wow, the Oilers won the Cup without Gretzky! Messier is TEH LEADER!!" when the Oilers wouldn't have even won their division if Ranford hadn't closed and locked the goal.

Great post eva :thumbup:

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Forgive me if I don't really know what I'm talking about here, because I don't know a lot about hockey before the late 90's. But would you consider Mario Lemieux in this list, or maybe top ten. I know the guy held onto the game a little too long but wasn't he the captain when the pens won back to back cups, also wasn't he the captain of the 2002 Canadian gold medal team? (I don't put a lot of stock in that, but it says something about his leadership) I know he's considered as one of the best all time players, but was he a good leader?

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Forgive me if I don't really know what I'm talking about here, because I don't know a lot about hockey before the late 90's. But would you consider Mario Lemieux in this list, or maybe top ten. I know the guy held onto the game a little too long but wasn't he the captain when the pens won back to back cups, also wasn't he the captain of the 2002 Canadian gold medal team? (I don't put a lot of stock in that, but it says something about his leadership) I know he's considered as one of the best all time players, but was he a good leader?

I've never heard anyone in hockey mention him as one of the best leaders ever.

He's always had a reputation as a big whiner, which is contrary to what one expects from a great leader. He didn't have the greatest work ethic either. Guy was great because he was so physically gifted.

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Forgive me if I don't really know what I'm talking about here, because I don't know a lot about hockey before the late 90's. But would you consider Mario Lemieux in this list, or maybe top ten. I know the guy held onto the game a little too long but wasn't he the captain when the pens won back to back cups, also wasn't he the captain of the 2002 Canadian gold medal team? (I don't put a lot of stock in that, but it says something about his leadership) I know he's considered as one of the best all time players, but was he a good leader?

I would easily consider Lemieux in the Top 10- what that guy went through to come back was an inspiration to pretty much any hockey player out there, I can't imagine what it did to the players on his own team. Also, he led back to back Cups, with back to back Conn Smythes, the 2nd after their head coach died, largely similar to Yzerman's 2nd after Konstantinov's tragic accident.

We all love to hate on the Penguins but Lemieux was an absolute stud.

I've never heard anyone in hockey mention him as one of the best leaders ever.

He's always had a reputation as a big whiner, which is contrary to what one expects from a great leader. He didn't have the greatest work ethic either. Guy was great because he was so physically gifted.

That's true of Mario in the 80s... Watching Gretzky taught him a few things and he gave up the fast food and cigs after a few years.

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There were six regulars on the 1994 Rangers who were regulars on the 1990 Oilers. The 1994 Rangers also had several key players who were Rangers when the Oilers won, such as Conn Smythe winner Brian Leetch and goaltender Mike Richter.

By comparison, the 1988 Oilers had nine players who were also regulars on the 1984 Oilers.

Messier's leadership in 1994 extended no further than saying "Hey guys, we did this before, right?" and then Richter and Leetch led the team with solid performance and one great moment from Messier. His leadership in 1990 is exaggerated because it's "look, wow, the Oilers won the Cup without Gretzky! Messier is TEH LEADER!!" when the Oilers wouldn't have even won their division if Ranford hadn't closed and locked the goal.

Good post.

Common players on the 90 Oilers and 94 Rangers:

Messier

Graves

Tikkanen

Anderson

Beukeboom

Lowe

MacTavish

Edited by egroen

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How come no one has mentioned Bourque? He was definitely one of the greatest leaders in the history of a very very storied franchise. Amazing player too I might add.

NOTE: I can't open this website on my computer for whatever reason so not too sure if it is on bleacherreports list. Just haven't seen a single person mention him on here yet.

because he never led the B's to a stanley cup...he defected to the avalanche and was second in line to joe sakic, who yes, belongs in the top 5. he only led the avs to what? 2 cups...one less than all our hero, Steve Yzerman. in his short tenure, i'd put lidstrom ahead of bourque. he lost the longest tenured captain and greatest captain the NHL has seen and won the cup his first year as the wings captain. we'll all see when he's gone the calming influence he has on the team.

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i'd put lidstrom ahead of bourque. he lost the longest tenured captain and greatest captain the NHL has seen and won the cup his first year as the wings captain.

Lidstrom has been a very good captain, but using 2008 to justify his leadership is not a very good indication. It's much along the lines of the 1990 Messier example. Being able to win a Cup in your first or second year as captain, having just taken over a team that was already a Cup winner/contender, is not a reasonable sample of leadership. Nor is any single year, for that matter.

Bourque may not have won the Cup with the Bruins, but he led them to 2 Cup finals and two more conference finals without the support of huge spending. The Wings were also not huge spenders until the mid 90s when Bowman was brought in, and Ilitch committed to doing whatever was necessary to ice not just a successful team, but the most successful team.

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Lidstrom has been a very good captain, but using 2008 to justify his leadership is not a very good indication. It's much along the lines of the 1990 Messier example. Being able to win a Cup in your first or second year as captain, having just taken over a team that was already a Cup winner/contender, is not a reasonable sample of leadership. Nor is any single year, for that matter.

Bourque may not have won the Cup with the Bruins, but he led them to 2 Cup finals and two more conference finals without the support of huge spending. The Wings were also not huge spenders until the mid 90s when Bowman was brought in, and Ilitch committed to doing whatever was necessary to ice not just a successful team, but the most successful team.

If messier's name gets thrown around for the whole two teams two cups thing, Lids gets a nod for being the ONLY european captain to ever win the cup. Just sayin'

Edited by theman19

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