Um.. lets see if I can change that opinion.
For me he is. He would just AoE Ozai. He lolstomped Suko and can do so to Azula.
He didn't stomp Zuko in a real fight. He just threw him, and blasted Zuko. Which Zuko was capable of easily reacting to that blast and countering it. The blast did nearly knock him off the clif.
Now you're also implying that Zuko=Azula. The EOS Zuko only was capable of handling Azula , because of TWO factors. He learned the true way of the fire, and Azula had lost her cool. She wasn't thinking like she normally would.
A good lightning blast would put his metal ass on the ground. He's powerful but not the stronger.
Iroh would need to charge or do gestures while CM already blasted the area.
You forget. CM is breathing EVERYTIME, he uses a blast. Normal fire bending is faster than his blast. Zuko was capable of creating a fire wall before it even hit him. Fire can be created with a gesture as you said. The only one who has to charge is CM.
Allow me to explain who his powers work. He brings the Chi from his belly, and up into his forehead.
He was defeated by a plot device after all...there was a reason why they did not added him in the comet.
He was defeated by luck. But it's not like anyone couldn't have beat him. He's just someone really hard to fight. Aang could have beat him in Avatar state. But lets look at the real masters, and not the kids.
He could had been smart and killed Ozai and take the title lol. Also in an eclipse he would still be a threat unlike Ozai is useless.
First, he's a really loyal man.
Second, it's not like Ozai is some weakly. He's a very skilled fire bender. In an Eclipse he would not be a threat. He's muscle, with no fighting skills. Azula is more of a threat than him.
Third, remember he's a fire bender too, his powers that he rely on, go bye bye.
Lastly it took the white lotus to stop Bumi and Toph in the comic. CM could lolstomp Toph and Bumi.
They all joked around. Iroh was smiling. No one was fighting at full force.
Iroh, has the fastest feats in the series. He reacted to REAL Lightning. He has displayed the most skills in fire bending. He has learned from the dragons. He's no someone who can be beaten easily.
Reacted to lighting > CM blast.