Where do you put him?

Discussion in 'Sports' started by ccrobinson, Nov 16, 2009.

  1. ccrobinson

    ccrobinson
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    Jimmie Johnson will win his 4th consecutive championship next Sunday, something that I never would have thought possible in this, or any, era of Nascar. I'm not sure yet where he belongs in the list of all-time greats, but I'm thinking he definitely is in the Top 5. Does he land at 3rd? Jimmie Johnson over David Pearson? Boggles the mind. I can almost hear Bob Alkire saying "Heresy" at such a statement. :wavey:

    What do you think?


    BTW, I've figured out who Brad Daugherty reminds me of. Have you ever read The Voyage of the Dawn Treader? Remember the Dufflepuds?

    This last one is the funniest of all, as the Dufflepuds are described as constantly talking and saying things that you can't really disagree with, which makes them really annoying, but you can't really get mad at them because they don't know any better.

    That's Brad Daugherty. Captain Obvious constantly says things that are pretty much true, but they're so obvious that you can't really get mad at him for saying them. You just sort of shake your head and wonder how he still has a job, because he clearly has no clue. It's hard to get mad at somebody who pretends to know something, but doesn't know what he doesn't know.

    I'm reminded of Dr. Jerry Punch's brilliance last year.

    :laugh: :laugh:
     
  2. Andy T.

    Andy T.
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    I don't follow NASCAR, so help me out - what do you credit Johnson's success to? Is it superior driving ability? Is it having the best produced car? Pit crew? What I'm getting at - is it more skill in the actual racing or is more the overall management of the team? I imagine you will say "both" - if so, which aspect is more important - skillfull driving or other factors?
     
  3. TomVols

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    I'm not the biggest NASCAR fan in the world. That said, I don't have Johnson in my top five. I think he will be someday, but he's not there right now. He's very close. I'll elaborate later.

    Funny stuff about the Brad analogy :)
     
  4. Revmitchell

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    Why not possible?
     
  5. ccrobinson

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    Superior driving ability trumps all. A great driver with average equipment will outperform an average driver with great equipment.

    Consider the HMS #5 car. In 2008, Casey Mears drove that car and finished the season with 1 Top 5 and 6 Top 10 finishes. In 2009, Mark Martin drove that car and will finish the season with a minimum of 5 wins, 14 Top 5s and 21 Top 10s. The difference was that a better driver was in the car in 2009.

    Jimmie has the complete package as far as a great crew chief, good crew and the best owner in the business giving him the best cars on the track. But, the cars don't drive themselves.


    I assume that the reason he's not there is because he only has 47 wins? That's fair. My thought that he might land in the Top 3 assumes that he's not finishing his career with 47 wins, but is more likely to land in the 70 to 80 win range.


    I didn't think it was possible because the competition is so close and there are so many good drivers and teams. Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt didn't win more than 2 consecutive championships and they're the greatest drivers in the history of Nascar. What Jimmie will accomplish on Sunday is incredible in any era of Nascar.
     
  6. Rubato 1

    Rubato 1
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    On Jordan's 4th championship, there were still debates about his place among Jabar, Magic, and Chamberlain. Most people are properly appreciated when they are done and gone.

    I say put him at #3 and let others prove me wrong. That is, IF he doesn't go into the wall on lap three or something...
     
  7. TomVols

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    Yes. Maybe I misread the question, but I thought we were talking where he is today, not where he might be or could be. Question seemed present tense. In my mind, for him to be in the top five, he'd have to have at least 60-70 overall wins and one more title. That would give him the second most titles of all time and in the top 7 I believe in wins. Then i think it's pretty much solid.

    That said, it makes for an interesting question as to who is already in the top five, and who Johnson would supplant. Care to take a stab at that or will I be derailing the thread?

    And let me throw this out: more than one friend of mine has long posited that were it not for the Chase, Johnson would not have won as many titles. I have yet to look it all up. But it begs the question: will this era be called the "Chase" era, and could it temper some accomplishments? Could the "dead tire" era do it? I don't argue this as being the case, but some folks more knowledgable about NASCAR than I have thrown out opinions stating such.
     
  8. ccrobinson

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    My fault. I wasn't clear with what I was asking. I meant to ask where you project him after he retires. I think he goes in the Top 5 because I think he finishes with 70-80 wins.


    My Top 5 wavers between DW and Yarborough in 5th, so one of those guys would get knocked out.


    The question is whether we can make the assumption that every finishing position would be the same regardless of the Chase or not. I don't know whether that's a valid assumption or not. I'd like to say that it is, because I do think drivers like Gordon and Stewart and Johnson go as hard as they can every race, which means everybody else has to do the same.

    Without the Chase, Jimmie would have won in 2006 by a mere 4 points over Matt Kenseth. Jeff Gordon would have run away with it in 2007. Carl Edwards would have overcome a 56 point deficit at Homestead last year to win by 16. Going into this season's finale, Jimmie would be leading Tony Stewart by 13 and Jeff Gordon by 56.

    How ironic that, by implementing the Chase, the championship battle has become less compelling in 3 of the last 4 years. There was just something about a 28, 29, 30 race battle that was more compelling.


    This is a very good question. I don't have an answer for this one right now.
     
  9. swaimj

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    He's gotta win more races to be in the top 5. He will probably do this, but, you never know. Success can vanish very quickly in NASCAR.

    When Earnhardt won his 7th championship, I thought he'd win 10, but it didn't happen.

    After Gordon won his 4th, I thought 7 would be all but a certainty for him, but it didn't happen.

    There are teams and drivers that could conceivably knock Johnson from his dominant perch, so we'll see.

    Four championships is very impressive, but part of the greatness of Petty and Earnhardt was dominance over a long period of time. Over 10 years for each. That long-term dominance led to their high number of wins. While Johnson has dominated in championships in the last four years, Gordon also has as many championships and many more wins because Gordon was dominant for a while and won many races. I think, as impressive as four in a row is, Johnson has a ways to go and needs to win more races to get into the category of Gordon, Petty, and Earnhardt.
     
  10. TomVols

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    In many ways, this is akin to some baseball players who had some very stellar years, then dropped off the page. What if Jimmie does that? Or what if he doesn't really drop off the page, but doesn't really play a factor?
    Thanks for this. I am now even less of a Chase fan than now. And my biggest reason was NASCAR wasn't totally honest about the reason. It wasn't that the race for the Cup wasn't competitive (sometimes it wasn't, but sometimes during the Chase it's not and it by no means ensures a competitive finish) but that it would increase viewership and interest in races in Sept and early Oct when the title was still not yet decided or not close to being clinched. Some fans were proabably like me. They tune out during football season and the end of baseball season. But they tune in when the title run gets close to being decided. More to the point, the Chase was in some respects invented to garner some new interest. You can't do that. You shouldn't make a 50 yard field goal worth 4.5 points in football because you think it might get you more fans.

    Has it added some discussion? Yes. An element of excitement? Sure. But I'm not sold on the Chase as it presently stands.

    Off topic, I know.

    I'd probably bump DW slightly to put JJ in there. But I was a bigger Cale fan than DW :)
     
  11. swaimj

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    Think of the attention this season would be getting right now if there was no Chase. With 10 races to go (when the Chase started and before the points were re-set) Tony Stewart had a commanding lead. It would have been called insurmountable. Yet, by non-Chase scoring, JJ would have chased Tony down and would have passed him in points LAST SUNDAY. Think how riveting THAT would have been. Think how much perverse joy I would have gotten from watching a Stewart melt-down!
     
  12. TomVols

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    That does it..I officially hate the Chase :laugh:
     
  13. ccrobinson

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    Well, it's unlikely, because I don't think steroid help you drive a race car.

    I think Jimmie's pace of winning races will drop off and that's why I put him between 70-80 wins when he's done. So, let's save the question and thread for 10 years from now or so. If Jimmie does fall off the map and prove me wrong about how good he is, he probably doesn't get moved up any higher on my subjective Top 10 than 7th or 8th.


    Same here and I hated it already. Those numbers I posted were very surprising to me. The championship chase hasn't become more compelling at all. In fact, it's become less compelling, especially when you consider what it could have been had Nascar not overreacted to Matt Kenseth's 2003 championship.

    Here are the real championship winners of this decade.

    2000: Bobby Labonte
    2001: Jeff Gordon
    2002: Tony Stewart
    2003: Matt Kenseth
    2004: Jeff Gordon
    2005: Tony Stewart
    2006: Jimmie Johnson
    2007: Jeff Gordon
    2008: Carl Edwards
    2009: TBD - J Johnson or T Stewart

    Biggest loser due to the Chase? Jeff Gordon. He would have 6 championships by now and would likely hold the mythical title of "Driver of the Decade".


    This is why the Chase is wrong. Imagine if swaim could post taunting messages about Tony Stewart here. How much more fun would that be?
     
  14. Rubato 1

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    This is like saying the Yankees would have been champions of baseball if there had been no playoffs for the years 2001-2008! If the driver is a champion, then he should show it by performing when it most counts!

    You cannot just eliminate playoffs and call someone a champion in any other sport (besides college football, but that's another thread)!

    The playoffs reveal the champion, not smother him. The best driver beats the best drivers. Period (in case you didn't see it).

    IMHO
     
  15. ccrobinson

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    I'm calling Jimmie Johnson one of the best racers in the history of Nascar and you're chastising me??? :confused:

    I don't know what the problem is, but it's a verifiable fact that Jeff Gordon accumulated more points over a 36 race schedule in 2004 and 2007. Since the points were reset after race #26 in both seasons, somebody else accumulated more points over the last 10 races and won the championship. You're reading more into this than there is. Kindly direct your outrage elsewhere.
     
  16. TomVols

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    I think it could. That said, I wasn't referring to the steroid era. Lew Burdette comes to mind immediately. Guys like Dale Murphy and the like.

    So if the question becomes "Today, where is Jimmie Johnson all time?" I too would probably have him just inside my top ten.

    I don't think this is directly analogus to the NFL playoffs, MLB, etc. The Yankees don't have to play the Royals and Reds in the playoffs. The Colts won't have to play the Lions. The Grizzlies won't be in the playoffs. Driver #30 in the standings is in the playoffs. An apples=apples would be the MLB arbitrarily calling an end to the Reg Season Aug 31, and then from there having the top four teams in each league finish their schedule and the best teams after the end of all that are winners of their respective divisions. It doesn't take enough of the whole body of work into account. For NASCAR to have a Chase equal to other sports, only the top 12 drivers would be competing against each other.

    That said, I get your point. If Jeff or Mark or whomever wanted to be the champion, they should've done what Jimmie Johnson had done the last three, now four, seasons. It's like saying the College football teams aren't really national champions because they didn't factor in the bowls (back in the years when the NC was crowned prior to the bowls) or something like that. Or that the MLB WS winner might not be the real champ because the second best team in their league didn't get to the playoffs because of divisional alignments.
     
  17. swaimj

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    Johnson really is in a unique position historically because of the Chase and it is hard to compare him to other drivers. All drivers who have 3 championships or more are drivers who have many victories. Petty, Earnhardt, Pearson, Waltrip, Yarborough, Lee Petty, Gordon...can't think of any other multiple championship drivers off the top of my head. All those guys would have to be in anybody's top ten.

    Then there are a host of drivers who won many races, but no championship. Jr. Johnson, Fireball Roberts, Bill Elliott, Mark Martin. As well there are drivers who have one championship and lots of victories: Rusty Wallace and Bobby Allison come to mind.

    I tend to put more weight on winning races than I do on winning championships. If I were a driver, I would rather do what Bill Elliot did in 1985 (win 10 major races and the Triple Crown) than what DW did that year; win the championship.

    By that measure, I would tend to put guys who have more race victories ahead of JJ. Again, his career is not over and he will almost certainly put more wins on the board, but at this point, I would rank him behind some of the other drivers who have won more races.
     
  18. Rubato 1

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    I'm pointing to where you said 'the real winners of [such-and-such years] are:'

    You can't say that the 'real' winners are one thing when a 'playoff' of sorts has proven otherwise not once, nor twice, but several times now.

    BTW. I rarely chastise or even get sarcastic. My sense of humor is subtle (i am told).
     
    #18 Rubato 1, Nov 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 19, 2009
  19. ccrobinson

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    I've never liked the Chase, I don't like the Chase, and I will never like the Chase. Thus, my list of champions is those who score the most points over the entire season. However, this is how Nascar actually awards championship trophies, so I acknowledge that Jimmie Johnson has won the thing 4 times.
     

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