malmsteen is technically alot better but satriani is much more tasteful which makes him a better musician. Petrucci has better music then both of them though although he still has some maturing to do and has not reached his full potential. To compare Satrianni to kirk Hammit? that is like when Yoda dueled with count dacu.
I love all the music posers who think the guitarist from there favorite little metal group is anything to compare to the real gods of music... To even think of comparing mettalica to Dream Theater is such a joke.. Metallica couldnt even begin to phatom the skill neccessary to play such music. Popular music sucks, but flat out the best musician of any of the guiatar class instruments is Victor Wooten of Bela Fleck ( Bass player) ... although there are some incredible guitarists they dont match his mastery of of a particular instrument. What he does is almost physically impossible, and is unreplicable.