After Wayne Gretzky's retirement in 1999, the NHL has produced numerous of outstanding players. While many people believe that Gretzky is the best player ever, there have been a handful of players who have come close to matching his accomplishments.
For instance, a few of the players who have had decent influence on the NHL since Gretzky's retirement are Mario Lemieux, Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin, and recently Connor McDavid. There have been a number of great players, despite the fact that no one has been able to match his remarkable statistical accomplishments or his influence on the game.
How do you feel about this? What other player, in your opinion, comes close to Gretzky's accomplishments and impact on the game?
For example I recently came across an article which stated that the no.99 was retired in the NHL as a symbol of respect to Gretzky’s greatness - Will we ever see a player close to him again?