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iacas

Athletes in Every Sport are Better

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On 3/9/2018 at 5:24 PM, BaconNEggs said:

Patrick Roy was the first goalie to really dedicate himself to the butterfly. He didn't invent it, and there were some goalies who used it even in the 70s to some extent, but most goalies were still very much playing a stand-up style in the 80s. 

He changed hockey more than any other player. Defense was big too, but didn't evolve nearly as fast as goaltending did, imo. 

Yeah, but even Roy was more hybrid, he was similar to Brodeur's style.

 

On 3/9/2018 at 5:31 PM, onthehunt526 said:

No not really... The defense was more of a 2000s deal. But, now has 3 defenders below the dots, to the point where you have to get lucky with a point shot and tuck in a fat rebound, or get a really good forecheck established, but they just replace with forwards and until the defensemen can recover... You can't get a pass to the slot, you have to play dump and chase... Boring boring boring

Defense has changed because players are more skilled now than ever, but the bolded line makes me wonder if you truly watch hockey. Most goals nowadays do come from rebounds, but that doesn't mean that slot passes are dead, I mean it's the entire reason the cycle still is a dominant strategy offensively. Dump and chase became huge because defenseman are faster and more agile than before so forwards aren't, at least they shouldn't be, allowed to walk in to the zone untouched. Once possession is gained in the offensive zone teams usually work the cycle and try to find the slot pass for a low shot off the pads which generates a rebound and easy scoring chance. Teams have to play like this because it's the most effective way. Gone are the days of average defensemen who would get walked around like it was nothing. I truly think that even if you took prime Wayne Gretzky and had him play today, he wouldn't be nearly as good as any of the top scoring forwards nowadays. That's how much better every position player is.

On 3/9/2018 at 7:30 PM, iacas said:

I don't think the argument gets weaker, and I don't think it's about genetics.

Let's imagine that in the 1940s, the top 100 players of football (NFL style) were 1% of the football playing population.

Nowadays they may be 0.01% of that population. There's a good chance a lot of those 1940s players wouldn't even play for a D3 college football program. Or start on their high school team.

It's not genetics. Now of course I cant say that with certainty, but I think the perfect example is Tom Kite(to steal an example from LSW). I think it is possible that taking the top 100 from 1940 and allowing them to grow up in this era would produce great golfers, but the odds of the top 100 from the 1940's being the top 100 now is very slim. In fact, I would venture to guess the chances of that are less than .001%

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On ‎3‎/‎9‎/‎2018 at 7:30 PM, iacas said:

Nowadays they may be 0.01% of that population. There's a good chance a lot of those 1940s players wouldn't even play for a D3 college football program. Or start on their high school team.

^I'd agree with this.

I found this article,

http://www.businessinsider.com/nfl-offensive-lineman-are-big-2011-10?op=1#1920s-pierre-garon-wr-washington-redskins-1

Quote

In the 1940s, the average offensive lineman was the same size as today's tall running backs, 6-foot-1, 221 pounds.

In 2015, the average offensive lineman is 6'-5" and 312 lbs!

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If we look at tennis and we assume the greater talent pool ultimately results in the performance gain v time graph flattening we would expect to see parity emerge.  The limit being approached.  But that’s not what we see.  We see Federer Nadal Djokovic winning everything.  

Is a massive changing of the game in tennis with huge power a result of stronger better athletes?  That’s whats being put forth.

But what about technology?  I’ve played almost 40 years.  The tech now is light years ahead in terms of the spin you can use vs say gut or synthetic gut strings.  The strings are so much better that the ball can be hit way way way harder with equal control due to spin.

https://sports.vice.com/en_us/article/qkqyvd/conspiracy-string-theory-how-new-technology-killed-american-mens-tennis

So,  the other point is why the lack of parity?  Does better equipment make it tougher for outliers to dominate?  Not in tennis!

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39 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

https://sports.vice.com/en_us/article/qkqyvd/conspiracy-string-theory-how-new-technology-killed-american-mens-tennis

So,  the other point is why the lack of parity?  Does better equipment make it tougher for outliers to dominate?  Not in tennis!

Different type sport.  In Tennis the equipment amplifies the ability of the equipment. In golf it doesn't. Golf equipment is hindered because of the regulation on MOI and Ball Speed. 

This is why the center of the club face on the driver is actually thicker than the surrounding area. The club is designed to maintain that .830 COR value, and expand that .830 COR value outward. 

This type of design does not amplify the best golfers who already hit the sweet spot 99% of the time. It does help the golfers who might only hit the sweet spot 90% of the time. 

Your comparison on equipment does not match up when you delve into what the purpose of the technology is and how it helps the athlete. 

 

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@saevel25

The topic here is based on a premise that all athletes in all sports are better than in the past.  To a degree that’s absolutely true but to what degree?  Athletic ability itself doesn’t exist in a vacuum.  Other factors also affect outcomes.  Take auto racing.

You give Mario Andretti a car that’s slow he will be slow,  but still fast relative to others in the same car.  Take Formula One.  Were Senna and Prost worse than Lewis Hamilton on pure skill?  Was Schumacher worse than Hamilton?  The Mcclaren Honda Marlboro cars were different and much more difficult to drive.

Notice I’ve never disagreed with the reasoning itself in the argument being presented here.  It’s logically consistent.

I am simply pointing out that its premise is incomplete.  

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1 hour ago, Jack Watson said:

If we look at tennis and we assume the greater talent pool ultimately results in the performance gain v time graph flattening we would expect to see parity emerge. The limit being approached. But that’s not what we see. We see Federer Nadal Djokovic winning everything.

Tennis is a different beast. Two points:

  • Tennis is one-on-one. This has two sub-points:
    • Roger Federer isn't playing against the entire field. He's playing against only one person at a time. There are upsets, but when you play ONE person, they're minimized.
    • His play also directly affects the play of others. If when Tiger Woods hit a good shot he was able to penalize every other player slightly, he too would have won by even larger margins.
  • Tennis players today are absolutely significantly better than tennis players from 40 years ago. No question. Which is the main point of the topic. Athletes in every sport are better.

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4 hours ago, iacas said:

 

  • Tennis players today are absolutely significantly better than tennis players from 40 years ago. No question. Which is the main point of the topic. Athletes in every sport are better.

Tennis is a game where technology really has changed the way the game is played, though. Many would argue that in terms of talent (whatever that is) McEnroe and Laver were better than almost all if not all of the current players. They should have drawn the line with composite racquets and limited their size 30 years ago. The game would be better for it.

Edited by Shorty

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Thing is,  in golf you take the older players who grew up with equipment that required them to be more precise and develop their skill better and they scored pretty close to what guys now score.  They had to have more skill because the gear required it and the courses forced it.  The old gear was the swingdeveloper.

All I know is I respect George Knudson way more than say Hunter Mahan or pick your modern journeyman.  Knudson was a better striker with more skill and it’s not even close.

 

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I have no problem with agreeing to today's athletes being better than than those they followed. Even normal people, regardless of the jobs they hold today, are better than yesteryear's workers.

Today's working conditions are better. Education in training is better today. Tools, and equipment are better are better than 20,30,40 years ago. Today's medical advancements keep folks working longer. 

However the one thought that always comes to my mind when comparing workers (athletes) is how would have today's  workers done way, way back then.

How would Brady  have done based on the known knowledge, playing conditions, and equipment used during Y.A. Tittle's day? Same as what if Tiger played in the 1930s ? Both would have done well due to natural ability, but could they have come back from their knee, and back injuries? Probably not. 

20, 30, or 40 years from now, today's great athletes, and their accomplishments, most likely will  have been replaced by the next bunch of great atletes. 

I heard a line in a TV show once,  where the guy told another guy he wouldn't get out of jail until yellow cabs were replaced by space ships. That pretty well sums up the comparisons of yesterday, today, and tomorrow's athletes. 

 

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7 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

Thing is,  in golf you take the older players who grew up with equipment that required them to be more precise and develop their skill better and they scored pretty close to what guys now score.  They had to have more skill because the gear required it and the courses forced it.  The old gear was the swingdeveloper.  

Scoring average is a completely pointless metric. I don't know how many times you have to hear it, but I have little faith that this was the last one.

You can set a course up to have a 67 scoring average or a 76 scoring average.

8 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

All I know is I respect George Knudson way more than say Hunter Mahan or pick your modern journeyman.  Knudson was a better striker with more skill and it’s not even close.  

Hunter Mahan won six PGA Tour events against much stiffer competition than George Knudsen and his eight.

I'll take Hunter Mahan head to head.

Thanks for your opinions, but they're worth what we all paid for them.

@Patch, you can reach the point at which humans can't do much better. We're not evolving quite that quickly… and, the numbers game of being the best 150 out of X speaks to a law of diminished increases in quality.

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1 hour ago, Jack Watson said:

Thing is,  in golf you take the older players who grew up with equipment that required them to be more precise and develop their skill better and they scored pretty close to what guys now score.  They had to have more skill because the gear required it and the courses forced it.  The old gear was the swingdeveloper.

All I know is I respect George Knudson way more than say Hunter Mahan or pick your modern journeyman.  Knudson was a better striker with more skill and it’s not even close.

 

Athletes are better athletes. Period. Is Usain Bolt the fastest man of all time because of his shoes? You don’t think being a superior athlete can produce a better golfer? I don’t understand why you’re so obsessed with equipment when you’re not even close to being scratch. You’ve got modern equipment right? What’s the problem?

I started golf with Northwestern Thunderbirds, Lynx Predator, Titleist DCI 962b. Boy, golf is so much easier now...come on. 

And since you’re quite hung up with equipment being such a major factor, the Hickory Society of Golfers...total amateurs shooting today’s courses scoring low 70’s to 80’s ...using hickory clubs. Imagine if today’s pros practiced with these clubs. 

Edited by Vinsk

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20 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

Plus repeating your premise over and over is not making an argument it’s tastes great less filling.  At least I am providing reasons why the truth is what it is.  

Amazing you of all people say this. Your ‘reasons’ are nothing more than opinion. You have been repeatedly given explanations as to why better equipment has narrowed the gap thus making it more difficult for the elite players. And your response ad nauseam is how some guy in the past could hit great shots with poorer equipment. Seriously, you really sound like a flat-earther. You’re wrong. Completely wrong and I’m walking away from your nonsense. You can get away with your stubborn and biased delusions from your melancholic lust for the golden years around the water cooler. But on this site with very wise people who actually present facts from data and research with stats and mathematics, you’re getting nowhere.

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3 minutes ago, saevel25 said:

Massively :offtopic:

:doh:

Well....He said he has a hard time believing it’s real...seems to be his theme...

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National Geographic has some very good information this month about athletes being better today than in years past with validated data.   It's worth a read.

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Any better baseball players today than Babe Ruth? Name one that could be the most dominant offensive player by far, a better than average outfielder. a great base runner and one of the best pitchers in the league all the while not getting hurt all of the time.

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3 minutes ago, sheepdog said:

Any better baseball players today than Babe Ruth? Name one that could be the most dominant offensive player by far, a better than average outfielder. a great base runner and one of the best pitchers in the league all the while not getting hurt all of the time.

headshake.gif

That question fails on so many levels… not the least of which is that regardless of what anyone says, you're just gonna reply with some variation of "nuh uh."

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