Author Topic: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time  (Read 1462 times)

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Offline zerofox

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Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« on: April 04, 2019, 12:08:10 AM »
A lot talk recently about Ovi's chances of catching Gretzky's record, and a lot of debate around who the best goal scorer of all time is. Frequently the answer is Gretzky, and supporters of that answer point to his 894 goals. To which others will say "yeah but era." To be honest though, I don't think any of that really matters. I think if Ovi wins his 8th Rocket, that will pretty firmly make him the best goal scorer ever without debate.


Here's some metrics people might use to determine the best goal scorer ever, and why I think they work or don't work:


Total Career Goals - This metric points us to Gretzky as the best, but it doesn't adjust for era or longevity of career. Gretzky played in an era where goalies had the bodies of malnourished vegans and goals were a dime a dozen. Of course he's going to score plenty. Plus he played 20 seasons (nearly 1500 games). 894 goals is very impressive in a vacuum, but 894 goals over the course of 20 seasons largely in a high scoring era? A little less impressive.


Career Goals per Game - This metric would point us towards Mike Bossy being the best, but it also doesn't take into consideration the era. Play in a high scoring era and you'll have a high goals per game average. You also could keep a relatively short career and maintain a high G/GP average. Bossy had a record .762 G/GP, but also kept a relatively short 10-year career, which basically covers his prime years.


Era Adjusted Total Career Goals - This metric is most frequently used by the pro-Ovechkin crowd, because he's already 6th in era adjusted goals with 737, and would surpass Gretzky's 758 next season and end up 3rd all time. However, looking at this metric right now would say Gorgie Howe is the best. Yes this takes into account the era, but still doesn't take into account longevity of career. Gordie Howe's 925 era adjusted goals were done over 26 years (almost 1800 games). Of course you could argue that once Ovechkin's career is over, he could very well end up with over 925 era adjusted goals. But I think there would always be some doubt around the validity/accuracy of the formulas used to adjust for era. In other words, questions like "does the formula make the right assumptions" and "can you know for certain that Ovechkin would score X% more in Y era" would pop up. There will always be a group of people who have to "see it to believe it" and have no interest in speculating how many goals Ovi would score if he played in the 80s.


Goal Scoring Leads (Rocket Richards) - I think this measure is good enough to determine who's the best goal scorer of all time. It adjusts for era, because it doesn't matter if you played in a high scoring era or a low scoring era. You can win just as many Rockets scoring 30 goals a year in a hypothetically low scoring league as you could scoring 80 goals a year in a high scoring league. It also somewhat adjusts for longevity of career, because you could win 10 Rockets in 10 years, or win 10 Rockets in 20 years (with the last 10 years likely being your "down years" where you have a harder time winning more Rockets). But at the same time it still attributes some value to having a long, healthy, consistent career (you need to play enough seasons at a high level to win a lot of Rockets). To win a single Rocket is to say you were the best goal scorer among your peers, regardless of era. To win a lot of Rockets is to say you had a consistently strong career, without giving you too much benefit for playing until you're a pensioner. If Ovi wins his 8th, I think it's a very easy argument to make.


I think the only real counterargument you could make to using Rocket Richards as a metric for best goal scorer is the fact that Gretzky only won it 5 times, Howe only won it 5 times, and Bossy 2 times. You would also then argue that Lemieux and Brett Hull both only won 3 times. And all those guys are great goal scorers so what gives? But then I would probably say that if they didn't win the Rocket more, they either weren't consistently good enough as goal scorers relative to their peers, or just weren't all that special if they were getting beaten left and right by other players.

Offline Ozzies09tc

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2019, 07:23:49 AM »
well....

to do further research to assist in the pro-ovechkin is the best scorer of all time, one would have to take the time to watch every goal gretzky etc scored and figure out which ones would have been saved due to bigger goalie pads/bigger goalies.

you could then "subtract" those goals to make the argument more..even? (i cant brain right now)
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Offline alta

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2019, 05:16:08 PM »
OV. Hands down. The goaltending is vastly better during OVs career than it was previously, which makes OVs achievement that much more impressive, and I don't think a player could get this close to an equal number of goals and assists over 13 seasons if they tried.
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Offline 4 Caps

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2019, 10:28:28 AM »
I agree that today’s goaltending is vastly superior than what it was when Gretzy played.  On the other hand today’s hockey sticks are a lot better than the old wood sticks that players used back in the day.  I am not exactly sure when the new compsite sticks came into the league but I know players like Gordie Howe and Rocket Richard did not have them. 

Offline DC_1908

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #4 on: April 05, 2019, 09:35:00 PM »
The annual rewriting of the rule book, and the consistent economic clusterfuck of the NHL in last 40 years makes a side by side comparison of offensive statistics essentially pointless.


Ovie and Gretzky both benefited and suffered from changes made between the ages they played in.  Salary Cap, Two Line Pass, Composite Sticks, Curves. four or four minors, obstruction, interference, video scouting,  the list of changes that need to be considered in this comparison are damn near infinite.


So who’s second and third best/most accomplished  goal scorer behind Mr. Hockey isn’t gonna have a definitive answer.


But I’ll tell ya one thing, if shotgun to my head I had to take a puck to the nuts from Gretzky or Ovie, ‘deed there’s no question I’m choosen Gretzky cause he ain’t breakin 110mph

Offline zerofox

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2019, 11:04:49 PM »
At this point I'm praying Ovi hangs on and wins the Rocket. Draisaitl is close thanks to his 2 goals last night. He plays the Flames tomorrow who have clinched and may rest some players. Ovi on the other hand plays the Islanders who still have something to play for, and I'm guessing TR may rest some players tomorrow. There's a small chance, but a chance nonetheless, that Ovi doesn't score tomorrow and Draisaitl gets a hat trick. The Oilers have nothing to play for other than to get Draisaitl 50, and if he hits 50 I'm sure the guys will try to get him 1 more to tie Ovi for Rocket, and at that point they may try to get him the hat trick.

Kinda hoping that if Draisaitl gets 51 he decides to stay there and take the tie with Ovechkin rather than denying him his 8th Rocket. Seems like the respectful thing to do...

Either way, I'd want Ovi to get his 8th Rocket, whether he is alone or tied with someone. Just get him his 8th. And after that I'm happy to let some other players win the Rocket going forward, but to get this one would be big.

Offline chas

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2019, 11:45:04 AM »
I took a stab at answering this a while back. I calculated the average goals for forwards and the standard deviation for the various years. That's not super scientific because it assumes a random distribution but... Ovechkin is something like 7 or so standard deviations above the average.  Statistically that's crazy.

A lot of the calculation  depends on how you determine who scores goals.

Offline DC_1908

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2019, 12:19:42 PM »
I took a stab at answering this a while back. I calculated the average goals for forwards and the standard deviation for the various years. That's not super scientific because it assumes a random distribution but... Ovechkin is something like 7 or so standard deviations above the average.  Statistically that's crazy.

A lot of the calculation  depends on how you determine who scores goals.
Yep, there are a shotloaf of factors to take into account for a side by side comparison.  Like I said above, how do you accourtly factor in salary cap compared to rule changes?  How do you account for Also, “stat-taient” has provided far more data, ie we can say “Ovie scored X percentage of goals from X area in X situation compared to Gretzky, but that data Gretzky data doesn’t exist.


Come to think of it, granted we’re at a bar for brunch and I’m four(ish) drinks in.  An interesting comparison would be to compare the totals against the league at there time.  IE what percentage of the total goals did they score, what was there rank in in comparative seasions, how many more did they have  than the runner up?


IOW if a hypothetical player led the league in goals  with 55. and the second had 36, third had 34, and a second hypothetical player had 70, but the second had 64 and third had 60, is second “better” for scoring 15 more in comparitive years?   Heh enter standard divinations and formulas of the ilk I have somewhere, and otter programs I’m a bit to buzzed now to do on my phone at a bar!


Regardless, Jack Daniels is the best brunch!

Oh and great fuckin post btw!

Offline zerofox

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2019, 01:05:14 PM »
Well congrats to Ovi for officially winning his 8th Rocket. 8 50 goal seasons and 8 Rockets for #8 has a nice ring to it, hopefully followed by 800 goals and of course some more Cups.

Oilers/Flames game last night was a bit of a nail biter since Draisaitl had been on fire down the stretch and hit 50 early on in the game. On game 32 of the season, Ovechkin had a 10 goal lead over Draisaitl. By the last game, that lead had fallen to 1. Pretty damn impressive if you ask me. I think if the season lasted a few more games Draisaitl might have had a shot at taking it.

I'm hoping Ovi can will his team to the Cup again, despite whatever TR does to screw things up.

Offline richkrt99

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2020, 04:49:52 PM »
Damn Ovies “on pace” for 61. . .



He won't get 60, but I'd love for him to hit 50+ again.  I think he will.


Hell, if he gets 20 more this year for 54, that would put him at 712 he could nearly catch Jagr at 766 next year (with another 54G year)


I think Ovi will catch Gordie at 801 before he retires.  He would only need about 90 more after this season.  I think he can average 30 over the next three seasons if he stays healthy


But I don't see any realistic way for Ovi to catch Gretzky....at 894 by the way.
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Offline alta

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2020, 05:16:30 PM »
I remember an interview with Gretzky when he was traded to NY and had played about half the season, he said he could've played another 5 years if his entire career was in the east because of the easy travel
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Offline alta

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #11 on: January 18, 2020, 05:39:40 PM »



He won't get 60, but I'd love for him to hit 50+ again.  I think he will.


Hell, if he gets 20 more this year for 54, that would put him at 712 he could nearly catch Jagr at 766 next year (with another 54G year)


I think Ovi will catch Gordie at 801 before he retires.  He would only need about 90 more after this season.  I think he can average 30 over the next three seasons if he stays healthy


But I don't see any realistic way for Ovi to catch Gretzky.



I bet OV signs a deal to retire with Backy in 5 years. If so, he only needs 203 goals to beat him. OV appears reinvigorated for the challenge, needs to average 41 goals a year to do it in 5, and if he's close and healthy I bet he signs a 1 year deal just do it. He's now tied with Yzerman and could easily pass Gartner this year.


1: Gretzgy 894
2: Howe 801
3: Jagr 766
4: Hull 741
5: Dionne 731
6: Esposito 717
7: Gartner 708
8: Messier 694
9: Yzerman, Ovechkin 692


the talking heads on tv keep bringing up his age, but it's a different world these days, guys don't smoke anymore, most don't drink like they used to, and sports nutrition didn't really exist 15 years ago








and nice necro post  :snicker:
Knowledge is knowing that the Tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is knowing that you shouldn't include it in a Fruit Salad

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Offline richkrt99

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2020, 05:46:09 PM »
Ovi is currently third all time in PPG


Andreychuck 274
Brett Hull 265
Ovi 258


I'd say he will easily surpass these PPG numbers to become #1 in NHL history, almost certainly next season.




Andreychuck played 1639 games (wow)
Hull played 1269


Ovi is currently at 1133


If Ovi could play another 506 games to match Andreychuck's 1639, I'd say he'd easily catch Gretzky in goals
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Offline BarfingMonkey

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #13 on: January 18, 2020, 05:58:30 PM »
Not to mention how the players now block shots as well.




Offline richkrt99

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #14 on: January 18, 2020, 06:04:45 PM »

I bet OV signs a deal to retire with Backy in 5 years. If so, he only needs 203 goals to beat him. OV appears reinvigorated for the challenge, needs to average 41 goals a year to do it in 5, and if he's close and healthy I bet he signs a 1 year deal just do it. He's now tied with Yzerman and could easily pass Gartner this year.



I hope so.  I would also hope he does it at a reasonable price to make it happen.  It could mean a lot to the team and franchise and his name in history


IF he gets another 16g this year for an even 50, that would tie him with Gartner at 708, and...


actually, Ovi would then need "only" another 185G goals to surpass the Great One....which IF he play 5 more years would be 37g per year.  That would also make him 39 or 40 and would add roughly another 400 games (including about 30 this year, and averaging 75 per year the next 5) giving him roughly 1532 games played (Wayne played 1487)


I guess if he could play long enough Ovi could possibly catch Gretzky in goals and possibly even in fewer games played


IF that were to happen, I don't think you could reasonably argue that OVI was NOT the greatest goals scorer ever.  Especially considering the eras in which all these guys played.
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Offline richkrt99

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #15 on: January 18, 2020, 06:09:36 PM »

and nice necro post  :snicker:


Is this what you meant by Necro?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Necro_(rapper)


He's one of my favorite gangst rappers  :wtf:
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Offline BarfingMonkey

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2020, 06:13:16 PM »


Is this what you meant by Necro?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Necro_(rapper)


He's one of my favorite gangst rappers  :wtf:

Offline alta

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Knowledge is knowing that the Tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is knowing that you shouldn't include it in a Fruit Salad

"Oh bother" said Poo, as he chambered another round

Offline richkrt99

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #18 on: January 18, 2020, 06:27:28 PM »
always so literal...
but barfing's was funnier

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Offline richkrt99

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Re: Greatest Goal Scorer of All Time
« Reply #19 on: January 18, 2020, 06:32:02 PM »

https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=necropost


And by the way...when I clicked on your link
I would like you to know that the pop up adds that showed on my computer were NOT gay porn, but rather
adds for Northern Tool infrared heaters
and Workpro wide mouth tool bag
and Duluth Trading (buck naked underwear)


so     :raspberry:

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