Monday, January 16, 2006

Forsberg Feedback

from ben schuchardt:
I get your point with Forsberg. You want the “best player in the world” to be the Great One, or the Great One you don’t remember, Bobby Orr. Guess what? He isn’t that good. Neither are other countless “best players in the world” who occupy the slot because somebody has to. Larry Holmes wasn’t one of the best fighters of all time, in my opinion, but he was clearly the “best fighter in the world” when he held the championship. Tom Watson was never Tiger Woods, even though he damn sure was the “best player in the world” for a time. Peter Forsberg has been the best player in the world for several years now. He isn’t heads and tails above everyone else. He has a peer group. Tough break.

What angers me about your post is the gratuitous comparison to Brett Favre, who was arguably the most overrated player of all time, but was never “the best in the world” by a long shot. You could have been fairer by choosing any number of players that were in fact the best for a period of time, but not of all time.

If not for the herd-think of NFL watchers who are overly influenced by John Madden, Brett Favre would be just some guy with a strong arm who caught lightning in a bottle from time to time. Think Kerry Collins with a little more consistency.
i certainly didn't mean to anger anyone and i'm sorry if my off the cuff comments offended, however, i don't think comparing forsberg to favre is unreasonable. while favre has been unjustifyably given god status by the media, IMO he was for a time the "best QB in the world". i'd say for the period between 1994 and 1998, there wasn't a better QB on the planet. favre wasn't head and shoulders above his peers during those years (aikman, young, elway), but neither has forsberg been head and shoulders above his peers during his period of dominance (as you mention above). i'm as sick of the brett favre worship as the next guy, but he was 10x the player kerry collins was.

i think it is more unfair to categorize forsberg with tom watson and larry holmes than favre. while watson and holmes don't compare favorably to the greatest players ever in their respective professions, both of them were head and shoulders ahead of their competition during their careers. you cannot say the same thing about forsberg. those guys were clearly the best, while forsberg was/is arguably the best.

you're right that expecting to see someone as impactful as 99 is unreasonable, but i do expect someone being billed as the best player in the world to be obviously impactful every game. i don't see that with forsberg right now. i don't say that with any sort of malice or agenda, i'm just talking about what i am seeing. as a flyers fan, i'll be glad to be wrong. maybe my expectations for the "best player in the world" are too high? i don't think they are, but that's a possiblity as well.

bottom line, i still root for him, i still like having him on the team, and i still wish we hadn't traded him away in the first place. i'm a peter forsberg fan. i'm just questioning this notion that he's the best player in the world (with the caveat that i admit i didn't get to see enough of him in his prime).



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with your Forsberg blog. I am soo pissed at Clarke for not bringing him sooner.

Our main problem however, is still that Nittymaki is our only defense....

- Joe

3:23 PM EST  
Blogger The Mean Guy said...

Our main problem however, is still that Nittymaki is our only defense....

i'm not so sure of that. the defense had a bad game against colorado with some bad giveaways and that awful play where hatcher got turned around and ended up on his keister, but overall i think they're rounding into shape.

hatcher has been playing very well of late and until that poor play that (i think) allowed the avalanche to go up 3-1, had a really solid positional and hitting game.

rathje isn't overly physical, but uses his wingspan really well.

once pitkanen and desjardins get back and the flyers can stop playing the meyers and theriens, i think they'll have a rather formidable defense corps.

now that they have a true #1 defenseman and rico can be the great #2 that he is suited for, i'm rather optimistic about the defense.

hatcher with desjardins
rathje with pitkanen
johnsson with seidenberg/jones/therien

i have no problems with that lineup.

i think come playoff time the real problem (as it always has been for the flyers in the clarke era) will be scoring goals. they'll be able to control the puck, but will they be able to shoot it places other than the opposing keeper's belly? that's the question i want to see answered.

other than forsberg, pitkanen, and occasionally johnsson, none of the guys on the team can create their own shot. that's why they struggle so much against the good teams. good teams suffocate them and they cannot create their own space.

4:47 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ok, the Flyers powerplay is abyssmal. We're hovering around 20%, and still hovering at 20% when it's a 5 on 3. That needs to change. It seems like the guys are afraid to shoot it during P-Play time. They're waiting for the pretty goal. I'd rather have the good ol' Tim Kerr garbage goal anyday....


10:41 AM EST  

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