Antonio Brown’s New Live-In Chef
With all due respect (and I fully acknowledge the greatness of Orr), WG is greater. A +/- cannot tell the whole story.
I agree with posters stating only 99 can compare to Brady in terms of ridiculous stats.
You’re right. +/- doesn’t tell the whole story. Gretzky has an inflated +/- because he played with an all-star supporting cast (who won a cup after he left). He never won a cup himself outside of Edmonton but Messier did. Most hockey experts acknowledge that while Gretzky was great, he was the second best offensive player of that era (Lemieux), but he just played for a long damn time and was consistently great, on a team full of great players.
Orr led the league in scoring several times as a DEFENSEMAN. He was super dominant on both sides, which is exactly why his impact shows in his +/-. Simply put, in their primes, you would win more games with Bobby Orr, since leading your team to scoring more goals and allowing less goals, while you’re on the ice, means you’ll win more games. It doesn’t matter if MVP awards are biased towards offense.
From a longevity standpoint, Gretzky has an argument as the greatest. But he wasn’t the greatest in his prime compared to Orr in his prime. There have been a lot of players who are similar to Gretzky in their abilities, but no one has ever come close emulating Orr.