Who you got?

Ferm Sheller

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Mar 5, 2007
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Who are they playing? A physical band of knuckle-draggers or a bunch of finesse skaters?
 

cshea

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I’d take Bourque too.

I think Chara is in the top 10-15 range. Orr, Bourque, Lidstrom, Robinson, Potvin and maybe Coffey are ahead of him. Then it gets a bit messy. I think Chara lost 2-3 Norris’ by having part of his prime overlap Lidstrom’s.
 

TFP

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Dec 10, 2007
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I'd put Harvey in the top 4, although it's tough across eras. When we did our all time team like 10 years ago as a forum, the top 4 was Orr, Bourque, Lidstrom, Harvey.
 

nolasoxfan

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Any chance we’re discounting Chara due to recency bias? We’ve been watching the guy age in front of our eyes, and right now he isn’t the player he used to be. Just sayin’.
 

Salem's Lot

Andy Moog! Andy God Damn Moog!
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It depends on the make up of your D Core. Last years club with smaller, mobile defenseman wins the cup with prime Chara. The 2013 team was big, physical and solid on D even without Chara, and really needed a guy like prime Bourque with his elite skill to beat that Chicago team.

As an aside, I always wondered how the 2004 team would’ve fared if Bourque was a fitness maniac like Chara and came back to for the Bruins after winning in Colorado. He would’ve be the same age that Chara will be next season.
 

RetractableRoof

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It depends on the make up of your D Core. Last years club with smaller, mobile defenseman wins the cup with prime Chara. The 2013 team was big, physical and solid on D even without Chara, and really needed a guy like prime Bourque with his elite skill to beat that Chicago team.

As an aside, I always wondered how the 2004 team would’ve fared if Bourque was a fitness maniac like Chara and came back to for the Bruins after winning in Colorado. He would’ve be the same age that Chara will be next season.
Everything I've read is that Bourque WAS a fitness fanatic. He worked every summer with a track/fitness coach to ensure he had the oxygen to play his heavy minutes, etc. Not contradicting you, but what do you see different in their two effort levels/fanaticism? Is it difference in training technology between time periods, or do you mean more?
 

Salem's Lot

Andy Moog! Andy God Damn Moog!
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Everything I've read is that Bourque WAS a fitness fanatic. He worked every summer with a track/fitness coach to ensure he had the oxygen to play his heavy minutes, etc. Not contradicting you, but what do you see different in their two effort levels/fanaticism? Is it difference in training technology between time periods, or do you mean more?
Bourque was always in great shape during his playing career. However it takes a greater devotion to training to continue an NHL career deep into your 40’s that most players don’t want to do, and I don’t blame them. He wasn’t interested in increasing his already huge training schedule to continue playing deep into his 40’s like Chara is doing.
 

RetractableRoof

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Bourque was always in great shape during his playing career. However it takes a greater devotion to training to continue an NHL career deep into your 40’s that most players don’t want to do, and I don’t blame them. He wasn’t interested in increasing his already huge training schedule to continue playing deep into his 40’s like Chara is doing.
OK, thanks for clarifying.
 

veritas

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Bourque was always in great shape during his playing career. However it takes a greater devotion to training to continue an NHL career deep into your 40’s that most players don’t want to do, and I don’t blame them. He wasn’t interested in increasing his already huge training schedule to continue playing deep into his 40’s like Chara is doing.
That really doesn’t have much to do with why players almost never play into their 40s. Chara, Chelios, Jagr, etc are freaks of nature compared to most NHL players. Who are themselves freaks of nature compared to normal people. A career trajectory like Backes’ is much more common. The greats can keep playing through a lot of decline but it catches up to everyone
 

lexrageorge

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Jul 31, 2007
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I’d take Bourque too.

I think Chara is in the top 10-15 range. Orr, Bourque, Lidstrom, Robinson, Potvin and maybe Coffey are ahead of him. Then it gets a bit messy. I think Chara lost 2-3 Norris’ by having part of his prime overlap Lidstrom’s.
I think this is right. Bourque was a Swiss Army knife: skate, shoot, hit, score, pass, PP quarterback, and penalty killer extraordinaire.

Chara leads the next elite tier (which should include Brad Park, fwiw). In his prime, Chara was a better defensive specialist than Bourque; few players could swallow up the opponents leading scorer to the same degree.