Blob Mckenzie wrote: Per wrote:
I disagree. Morrison never really came across as spectacular, but he has always made the wingers on his line sparkle like diamonds. One of the most under rated players in the NHL. As for being a defensive player, hell yeah, when you centre a line with two wingers who can't spell defense and are surprised to learn there's a goalie on their team, as they've never been close enough to see him.
A real inside scoop there.
I can do that too.
Brendan Morrison was a 60- 70 point center playing with two of the NHL's best wingers at the time. He was an average 2nd line pivot......hardly one of the NHL's most under rated players. He scored at a 40-50 point pace when playing with other players. He was along for the ride.
My original point was that I wonder how many points Naslund and Bertuzzi would have put up with a legit # 1 pivot like say a Forsberg, Sakic, Lindros, Thornton, Modano, Sundin, etc.
OK, the guys you mention were clearly better than Morrison. No question. But I do not think Morrison dragged the others down. Au contraire. What did Nazzy score in his best NHL season not on a line with Morrison? 66 points. Not shabby, but nowhere near what he scored playing with BMo. Same goes for Bertuzzi. His glory days were the years that he had Brendan as a centre.
I basically think that that line had some marvellous chemistry, in which three players that weren't really complete completed each other. Nazzy was a great sniper, but with a fairly one dimensional play. Bertuzzi was a great power forward but with occassional brain farts and poor defensive game. Morrison was a good playmaker, albeit not quite as good as the bona fide allstars you bring up, and with a defensive game that made up for Nazzy's and Bert's complete lack thereof. Each player brought something that helped create the sum of the WCE, and whereas Nazzy and Bert always get credit for the part they played, I maintain that Morrison isn't as appreciated as he should be. I mean the three more or less constantly played together, yet their franchise career +/- is +45 for BMo, +2 for Nazzy and +3 for Bert. How did that happen?
It can also be mentioned that Nazzy, albeit a superstar playing next to BMo, never flourished when playing for Sweden (apart from that one WJC where he played with Forsberg and Niklas Sundström). Nor did he amount to much in Pittsburg or with the Rangers. Bertuzzi's crash and bang and Brendan's smart passes helped make him the man he was in Vancouver. Without them he wasn't half the player he was when playing with them.