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Old 10-09-2019, 02:08 PM   #1
JerKy
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If past greats played today

IF the following athletes in their prime/at their best could step into a time machine and participate today, how would they fare? One has to also weigh in all the rule changes too, ie, QB's have it easier due to rule changes, however the speed of the game is mind-blowing compared to 40 years ago - especially on defense. So here we go...

1) Jim Brown

2) Dick Butkus

3) Walter Payton

4) Joe Montana

5) Jerry Rice

6) Lawrence Taylor

7) Rocky Marciano (not compared to today since heavyweight boxing is dead - compare to the late 80's/90's against Tyson, Holyfield, Lewis, etc

8) Muhammad Ali (same as above)

9) Wayne Gretzki

10) Michael Jordan

11) 1985 Chicago Bears

12) - 1995-96 Chicago Bulls
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Old 10-09-2019, 04:51 PM   #2
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You named some of the best ever. I would expect most of those named would still be great today. Most of these guys had a whole different mind set that made them well above the average.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:42 PM   #3
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I think Butkus would be too slow, despite being a tough MF'r. I think Marciano wound get KO'd in the first round by Tyson, Spinks, Kewis, and everybody.

Most of the others I think would still do well today....though the Bears might be a question mark. They were the best because they had huge guys on their team, but they would be average or undersized today. I love that team though, the 85 Bears were a special team everybody liked.

Whoops, I think Jim Brown would be a question mark too. The size and athletic mess of recent guys would hammer Brown imo. I don't think he'd be as stand-outrush, but it would also depend on his Oline and O-coordinator.

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Old 10-09-2019, 05:57 PM   #4
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As much as I love the Great One, I think he would have a terrible time competing today. He was too slow and the game as changed. For the most part a top national ranked AAA bantam team would beat the Pro teams in the 70s and prior. At least except for the physical portion of the game. The skill set of todays players are off the charts compared to the players of old.
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Old 10-10-2019, 01:18 AM   #5
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My take....

Jim Brown - As a die hard Browns fan this is hard to say haha. Jim played in a time when the weight of a D lineman was the same as himself - 230 lbs. Linebackers were 210 lbs. Most guys on the teams were white, including the secondary - meaning s l o w e r - yeah I'm white and I said it - gotta keep it real. Jim being a power runner had no problem smashing thru the D line, LB's, and being fast for his size, once he was past them, nobody in the secondary could solo tackle him even if they could catch him. Fast forward to today with D linemen being 270 AND faster, LB's being 240 and faster, secondaries where damn near everyone is black -MUCH faster compared to back then. IMO he WOULD still be good today, but bcoz of his style of running, he wouldn't excel, and really be at risk for injuries.


Butkus - Not so fast, but had that intangible - that knack for getting to the ball - just like a not-so-fast Chris Speilman in more recent times who lead the Lions in tackles every year. Average LB in Butkus's day was 210 lbs - he was 245lbs at 6'3 - slightly bigger than even todays average LB. A monster for those times. I think he would still be good today, but not legendary.

Payton - With his style of running - agile, quick, finding the hole - he would be as good as ever.

Montana - Cool, smooth, Dr Clutch would still be GOAT material, and prolly be even better due to the rule changes favoring QB's and receivers.

Rice - He would lead the league as always and be even better due to rule changes favoring receivers.

LT - GOAT of all LB's! Changed the game single handedly - at 6'3, 240, agile AF and speed of a receiver, he would dominate as if it were 1986. Just make sure he has his coke.

Rocky - Sad to say as a Rock fan for me growing up as a kid being into boxing myself, he was an idol. He would get murdered against a Tyson, and peppered to death by a Holyfield, Lewis or Bowe, if not KO'ed. For Crisake he was only 5'10, 189 lbs with a 68" reach - that let him beat a lot of not-so-good guys back in his day, and the guys he beat with names were already old. Sorry Rock.

Ali - You take the Ali that fought Liston and he beats ANYBODY of any era. Fast AF, and couldn't be touched. Now if he was after 1971, when he was heavier, not as nimble on his feet every rd, when Frazier caught him flush many times, Tyson might KO him. Afterall most would agree Tyson was much faster than Joe, and hit much harder to boot. But a young Ali beats all of them.

Gretzki - Never followed hockey much - can't say.

MJ - GOAT then, GOAT now. That is all.

85 Bears - A good Pats team in recent years would own them. Average weight of an O lineman in 85 was 260-265 lbs. Now it is 310 lbs. Could Dent, Hampton, Fridge and Mc Michael be even nearly as effective getting to the QB or stopping the run considering? Would Jim McMahon throwing only 9 times a game get it done? I don't think so. Times have changed a shitload - bigger, stronger, faster.

95-96 Bulls - You kidding me? They would dominate today just like then!
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Old 10-10-2019, 10:39 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dakota View Post
As much as I love the Great One, I think he would have a terrible time competing today. He was too slow and the game as changed. For the most part a top national ranked AAA bantam team would beat the Pro teams in the 70s and prior. At least except for the physical portion of the game. The skill set of todays players are off the charts compared to the players of old.
A very emphatic, are you kidding me from Canada on this one .

Phil Esposito, Guy Lafleur, Marcel Dionne, Bobby Clarke, Bobby Orr....the list goes on and on are going to be beat by some teenagers....c'mon man.
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Old 10-10-2019, 11:31 AM   #7
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drop the 1985 Bears d right off the list.... Fencik gets ejected each game for spearing with the head, the corners get flagged every third play. this frustrates the hell outta the D line and there is rebellion!!!! LOL... I hate the bears... GO PACK GO!!!!
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Old 10-10-2019, 01:02 PM   #8
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A very emphatic, are you kidding me from Canada on this one .

Phil Esposito, Guy Lafleur, Marcel Dionne, Bobby Clarke, Bobby Orr....the list goes on and on are going to be beat by some teenagers....c'mon man.
When is the last time you saw a AAA tourney? Kids today have off the chart skills and everyone is FAST. My son set school records in sprinting and he was probably only an 80% on the ice for speed. Wicked fast and stick handling that looks like a circus act. 10 year olds do Lacrosse shots and between the leg penalty shots. Look at the the 17 and 18 year olds now. They could literally skate circles around the old players. The old players admit the game has advanced way beyond their abilities.

Training is way more intense that play a game, go to the bar, repeat. At 14 my son practice 15 hrs a week. 5 days with a game on Sundays.
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Old 10-10-2019, 04:05 PM   #9
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When is the last time you saw a AAA tourney? Kids today have off the chart skills and everyone is FAST. My son set school records in sprinting and he was probably only an 80% on the ice for speed. Wicked fast and stick handling that looks like a circus act. 10 year olds do Lacrosse shots and between the leg penalty shots. Look at the the 17 and 18 year olds now. They could literally skate circles around the old players. The old players admit the game has advanced way beyond their abilities.

Training is way more intense that play a game, go to the bar, repeat. At 14 my son practice 15 hrs a week. 5 days with a game on Sundays.

I grew up playing hockey, I can speak pretty intelligently on the subject. I'm 42 so my generation is mostly 80s/90s for playing. As far as last tourney I watched, probably early 2000's. If we're talking about a skills competition at the all star weekend for some youtube highlights I'll give the kids the win, to say a bunch of 13 and 14 year old kids are going to beat the Habs or Flyers from the 70's is a bit much, at least say midget AAA

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Old 10-10-2019, 08:57 PM   #10
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I grew up playing hockey, I can speak pretty intelligently on the subject. I'm 42 so my generation is mostly 80s/90s for playing. As far as last tourney I watched, probably early 2000's. If we're talking about a skills competition at the all star weekend for some youtube highlights I'll give the kids the win, to say a bunch of 13 and 14 year old kids are going to beat the Habs or Flyers from the 70's is a bit much, at least say midget AAA
Agreed.

Sign on to Black Dog and check out some AAA Midget and Bantams today. They have taken leaps since 2,000.
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Old 10-10-2019, 09:40 PM   #11
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Agreed.

Sign on to Black Dog and check out some AAA Midget and Bantams today. They have taken leaps since 2,000.
I'll check it out, hope your boy has a great season.
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Old 10-11-2019, 09:58 AM   #12
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I'll check it out, hope your boy has a great season.
My son is aged out and at 5'8" like his Dad had no future in the sport anyway. Smaller defenseman now are in demand in the sport but not quite that small. Other than Spurgeon you still better be closer to 6 foot. He could have played prep but decided he liked cars and girls more.
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Old 10-11-2019, 06:18 PM   #13
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I'm a huge hockey fan.. I followed Gretzky in his prime for years.. I can say without any doubt that he would have serious trouble keeping up with todays skaters for sure.. He was ahead of his time BUT he is no where close to todays skaters who are so fkn fast, u just do not know until you see it in person.. I watched a game from the late 80's with the Flyers and Oilers and I got so bored, I fell asleep on how SLOW the game was.. Now days, the game is over before u even know it BC they move so fast now. Its just a whole new game today from back in the 80's and that is just reality.. MOB.....
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Old 10-11-2019, 07:22 PM   #14
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I'm a huge hockey fan.. I followed Gretzky in his prime for years.. I can say without any doubt that he would have serious trouble keeping up with todays skaters for sure.. He was ahead of his time BUT he is no where close to todays skaters who are so fkn fast, u just do not know until you see it in person.. I watched a game from the late 80's with the Flyers and Oilers and I got so bored, I fell asleep on how SLOW the game was.. Now days, the game is over before u even know it BC they move so fast now. Its just a whole new game today from back in the 80's and that is just reality.. MOB.....
Wayne had no issue playing alongside Paul Coffey and Glenn Anderson two of the greatest skaters the game has ever seen...I grew up in Edmonton in the 80's, that team flew. The game is certainly faster now, no argument there but the red line rule removal changed the pace of player more than anything, it's impossible to compare today's game and puck movement to a game that didn't allow two line passes.

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Old 10-11-2019, 09:34 PM   #15
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Wayne had no issue playing alongside Paul Coffey and Glenn Anderson two of the greatest skaters the game has ever seen...I grew up in Edmonton in the 80's, that team flew. The game is certainly faster now, no argument there but the red line rule removal changed the pace of player more than anything, it's impossible to compare today's game and puck movement to a game that didn't allow two line passes.
This is a very solid point and one I did not mention.. But we do agree that the speed in todays game is far superior then the game back then..
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