In today's NHL the power forward is one of the most coveted positions in hockey as teams love to have a dominant player that can hit, score, play defense and be a great overall player on the ice.
When you think about a power forward, you think about a player who is at least 6'3" and 230 pounds, but there are obviously exceptions to the rule.
There have been some amazing power forwards like Mark Messier, Gordie Howe, Eric Lindros, Peter Forsberg and countless others who have worn an NHL sweater. But what attributes would the ultimate power forward possess?
With so many players to choose from it is obviously a tough decision, but here is the ultimate power forward made up of attributes from the all-time greats.
Eric Lindros' Size and Strength
Eric Lindros' career was sadly cut short because of multiple concussions, and he had the potential to be an all-time great.
When assembling the ultimate power forward, having Lindros' size and strength would be key. The "Next One," as he was dubbed, was an absolute bull on the puck, standing 6'4" and weighing 240 pounds.
Not only was he a dynamic player, but he was a tough guy to play against and knock off the puck.
Mario Lemieux's Speed
Despite his size, (6'4", 235 pounds) Lemieux was a forward who had a ton of speed and he often used it to beat defenders. Although he was more of a finesse player, Lemieux's size allowed him to act as a power forward at times while on the ice.
Like Lindros, Lemieux had his career cut short because of injuries and health problems, and hockey fans were deprived of his full potential.
Gordie Howe's Goal-Scoring Ability
Gordie Howe is the NHL's all-time No. 2 goal scorer with 801 total goals scored during his lengthy career. Howe was a player who had a nose for the net, and there is a reason why he is widely regarded as one of hockey's greatest players of all-time.
Having Howe's skill set would certainly be a must when sculpting the ultimate power forward.
Mark Messier's Leadership Ability
Mark Messier is the greatest leader and captain in NHL history, and he remains the only player in league history to captain two different teams to a Stanley Cup championship.
Every year the NHL gives out the Mark Messier Leadership Award to honor him as one of the league's all-time great leaders.
Peter Forsberg's Playmaking and Vision
In a highly unfortunate trend, Forsberg is another power forward who makes you ponder the question, "What if he remained healthy?" During his time in the NHL, Forsberg was an amazing playmaker who had great vision.
His talents and ability to create offense put him in line with some of the NHL's all-time greats. Forsberg currently sits in fourth all-time for assists per game behind Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Bobby Orr, and he sits ninth overall in points-per-game average.
The way Forsberg saw the ice and set up teammates was impressive, and he was a key part of the Colorado Avalanche's success in the 1990s.
Cam Neely's Truculence
Yet again, Neely is a power forward who had a career cut short by injuries, but the ultimate power forward in progress would be completely healthy and stronger with Neely's truculence and physicality.
Although Neely is known for his offensive abilities as a 50-goal scorer, he was a player who never shied away from physical contact and checking.
His ability to play the game with such physicality made him one of the NHL's top power forwards during his heyday with the Vancouver Canucks and Boston Bruins.
Jaromir Jagr's Hands
Jaromir Jagr is one of the greatest wingers in NHL history, and he was one of the NHL's most dominant players in the 1990s. Jagr was a player who was strong on the puck and loved to drive to the net.
What made Jagr very dangerous was his ability to drive through opponents in traffic while using his slick hands to protect the puck. Once Jagr was in striking distance he was a lethal scorer who will go down as one of the league's best finishers.
Brendan Shanahan's Shot
Brendan Shanahan currently collects a paycheck as the NHL's V.P. of Player Safety, but he was once paid for his scoring ability and physical play.
To date Shanahan remains the only player in league history to score over 600 goals and log at least 2,000 penalty minutes, and this speaks to his abilities as a physical scorer.
Shanahan was a player who always had a talented shot and it made him a valuable player to many teams throughout his career.
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