It seems everyone has a different criteria for how they decide the greatest player of all time. For me, it’s the first player you would choose if you lined all of them up to pick a side.
For mine, Ablett doesn’t have the leadership qualities and he can’t swing a game when everyone around him is struggling.
Carey, Voss and Hird are the 3 best I have seen in the flesh by the above criteria, and it’s probably Selwood and Franklin way ahead of Ablett if I’m lining them all up to select a team based on the last 20 years.
I'd say Judd's briliance (at his WC peak) in conjunction with some outstanding team-mates (Cousins, Kerr and Cox) genuinely changed the way the game was played. Certainly a catalyst for the defensive evolution we saw in the 2nd half of the noughties.
Since about 2007 I always got the sense that GAJ was about what a football team could do for him (his game). In his prime his number 1 priority appeared to be to rack up a million possessions a game and catch the maggots' eyes hoping to pick up 3 votes for the Brownlow.
Whereas genuine champions are always thinking about what they can do for their teams/teammates and get them involved in the game. They don't seem to be overly preoccupied wih their personal stats during a game and go about doing what's necessary to help the team win even if it means sacrificing their own stats.
This older version of GAJ though is now back to focusing (gathering less possessions being up forward) on what's in the best interest of the team instead of his.
I never saw any evidence of this whatsoever. He was quicker and better skilled than all his teammates. Why do people rag on players for getting give and go hand balls? ‘There’s a defender trying to shut down myself and a teammate - gee if I hold onto it he can just go after me. Maybe if I pass it to my teammate so he goes after him, and then I receive it, we can lose him altogether.’ If Ablett is the player giving and going, chances are by the time he receives the ball back, he’s burned anyone within cooee and then hit a target perfectly upfield.