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-   -   Joe Malone vs. Newsy Lalonde (http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/showthread.php?t=843012)

arrbez 11-17-2010 04:36 PM

Joe Malone vs. Newsy Lalonde
 
Hey all,

I put this little study together a while ago, but never really gave it it's own thread. And now I found it on my hard drive, so here it is:

I noticed that Newsy Lalonde is almost unanimously considered to be better than Joe Malone. In the HOH Top 100 list Lalonde is ranked 28th right behind Cyclone Taylor at 27. Joe Malone is listed down at #45. In the past 5 ATD's, Malone has been selected an average of 31 places later than Lalonde. While Lalonde has settled into the 25-30 range over the last few drafts, Malone has only cracked the top-50 once.

But when I looked at the numbers, they're clearly in Malone's favour. They're two years apart in age, and played 10 seasons (1913-1922) head-to-head in the NHA/NHL. Unlike most players from this era, this gives us an excellent basis for comparison. I'll put Malone in red and Lalonde in blue.

All stats come from hockey-reference.com. I realize there's a margin of error here, as I've seen conflicting stats from different sources. But, well, I had to pick one, and hockey-reference seems pretty legit.

I don't know how to make tables and spreadsheets for this message board, so this is bound to be a long post. Bear with me.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Raw Finishes:
(the high score from each year is bolded)

1913 M: 43
1913 L: 14
-----------------
1914 M: 28
1914 L: 27
-----------------
1915 M: 21
1915 L: 7
-----------------
1916 M: 35
1916 L: 34
-----------------
1917 M: 49
1917 L: 35
-----------------
1918 M: 48
1918 L: 30
-----------------
1919 M: 9
1919 L: 33
-----------------
1920 M: 49
1920 L: 46
-----------------
1921 M: 37
1921 L: 43
-----------------
1922 M: 31
1922 L: 14
-----------------

Total Points 1913 - 1923:
Malone 350
Lalonde 283

As we can see, Malone outscored Lalonde in 8 of the 10 seasons they played together, for a ~20% total lead. Of course, this is just raw totals. Let's take a look at their points-per-game.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Points Per Game


1913 M: 2.15
1913 L: 1.07
-----------------
1914 M: 1.64
1914 L: 1.92
-----------------
1915 M: 1.75
1915 L: 1.0
-----------------
1916 M: 1.45
1916 L: 1.41
-----------------
1917 M: 2.57
1917 L: 1.94
-----------------
1918 M: 2.4
1918 L: 2.14
-----------------
1919 M: 1.12
1919 L: 1.94
-----------------
1920 M: 2.04
1920 L: 2.0
-----------------
1921 M: 1.85
1921 L: 1.79
-----------------
1922 M: 1.29
1922 L: 0.7
-----------------

Average points-per-game 1913 - 1922:
Malone: 1.83
Lalonde: 1.59

Again, Malone comes out ahead in 8 of the 10 seasons, and in total over the span.

Now let's see who had the more dominant seasons:
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dominance

Here I'll list from 1 - 20 the raw totals and PPG finishes for both players:

Raw Totals:
49
49
48

46
43
43
37
35

35
34
33

31
30
28
27
21
14
14

9
7


Points Per Game:

2.57
2.40
2.15

2.14
2.04
2.00
1.94
1.94
1.92

1.85
1.79
1.75
1.64
1.45

1.41
1.29
1.12

1.07
1.00
0.70


Although Lalonde makes up a little ground in terms of PPG, Malone is still clearly the top dog in terms of single-season dominance, with the three highest finishes in each category.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Intangibles/Other Aspects

-Lalonde had a physical aspect to his game that Malone wasn't known for, which certainly helps his case.

-On the other hand, Malone was the better skater.

-Lalonde has a monster playoffs in 1919 that Malone never equaled in the NHL (although he did score 14 goals in his 3 Stanley Cup games, competition was pretty questionable in that era of the challenge cup).

-I don't recall either being known as defensive stalwarts

-Without looking too deeply into it, I suspect Lalonde probably enjoyed better team-mates. Lalonde played his entire prime with the Canadiens while Malone spent the majority of his career with a Quebec Bulldogs/Hamilton Tigers franchise that was generally mediocre-to-terrible.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Conclusions:

Pretty much any way you slice it, Malone was the better offensive player. Peak, Prime, Longevity, Per-Game, etc. The only argument that can be made for Lalonde is playoffs, based mainly on one colossal year.

I guess the question is this:

Is a physical edge and a monster NHL playoffs in 1919 enough to put Lalonde ahead of a guy who consistently bested him offensively in all regards?

Thoughts?

Kyle McMahon 11-17-2010 05:17 PM

I this is a case where, once contemporary opinion is factored into the equation, the numbers simply betray reality. Lalonde was considered the best all-around player in the world in many circles during the NHA era and then on into the early 1920's. I like to think of him as something in between Gordie Howe and Mark Messier. Excelled at all aspects of the game, and did it at a high level for a really long time. He wasn't merely physical; he could dominate any area of the ice.

Malone just wasn't portrayed in a similar light by his contemporaries. It was acknowledged that he was perhaps the game's greatest scorer, but this seems to be the only area where he can boast any sort of advantage over Lalonde. By all accounts, Malone just didn't control games in the way Lalonde (or Cyclone Taylor) did. I've seen the Brett Hull comparison applied to Malone before, and it seems to fit reasonably well.

arrbez 11-17-2010 06:07 PM

I'd have a hard time looking at the greatest (or second greatest after Taylor) offensive player of a generation and comparing him to Brett Hull though. How could someone dominate like Malone did without being a centrepiece guy?

He led the NHA/NHL in scoring most times he played a full season. He holds the NHL records for goals in a game, goals-per-game over a season, most 5-goal games in a season, etc. His goal mark of 44 stood for 27 years until Richard broke it. His points mark stood for a decade until Morenz broke it. He was a dominant force captaining Quebec to back-to-back Stanley Cup championships early in his career. Obviously some of these things aren't realistic in the modern era, but it goes to show how dominant he was in his own time.

I suspect playing most of his career out of the spotlight on middling (and long-defunct) teams may have a lot to do with his historical standing. I think it's definitely some food for thought.

tony d 11-17-2010 06:09 PM

Going with Malone here. Still 2 of the best players in the early days of the NHL.

Kyle McMahon 11-17-2010 08:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by arrbez (Post 29009102)
I'd have a hard time looking at the greatest (or second greatest after Taylor) offensive player of a generation and comparing him to Brett Hull though. How could someone dominate like Malone did without being a centrepiece guy?

Well, I do rank Malone comfortably ahead of Hull, but both seem to fit the description of guys who were all-time greats at one aspect of the game, but weren't seen as anything special in any other areas. Most old descriptions of Malone mention his superb knack for scoring goals, but pretty much stop there. Whereas Lalonde could be the driving force in game where he may have only scored one goal or none at all.

Quote:

He led the NHA/NHL in scoring most times he played a full season. He holds the NHL records for goals in a game, goals-per-game over a season, most 5-goal games in a season, etc. His goal mark of 44 stood for 27 years until Richard broke it. His points mark stood for a decade until Morenz broke it. He was a dominant force captaining Quebec to back-to-back Stanley Cup championships early in his career. Obviously some of these things aren't realistic in the modern era, but it goes to show how dominant he was in his own time.

I suspect playing most of his career out of the spotlight on middling (and long-defunct) teams may have a lot to do with his historical standing. I think it's definitely some food for thought.
I'll counter the point you make in your last paragraph with the bolded. For the fact that Malone is, and could very well remain in perpetuity, the only man to score 7 goals in an NHL game, I suspect he is a more well-recognized figure than Lalonde in general.

Unless you're suggesting that even in his own time, playing on the oft-moribund Bulldogs led to him being undersold in comparison to Lalonde, which is indeed a possibility.

arrbez 11-17-2010 09:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kyle McMahon (Post 29013275)
Unless you're suggesting that even in his own time, playing on the oft-moribund Bulldogs led to him being undersold in comparison to Lalonde, which is indeed a possibility.

Yeah, that's what I was getting at.

Not only was Quebec/Hamilton usually pretty poor, but the franchise folded 85 years ago, which essentially removes it from living memory.

All speculation, but I think there's some merit to it. Aside from a small community of history buffs like ourselves, who out there has any incentive to research the guys who played for the New York Americans or Montreal Maroons, nevermind the Bulldogs who folded 15-20 years before that.

Being the first great star of the Montreal Canadiens probably hasn't hurt Lalonde any either.

Leafs Forever 11-17-2010 10:02 PM

Hmm. Very interesting and nice stuff arrbez.

Lalonde did spend some time out west and put up some good numbers there, seemingly, however, that Malone didn't. Not sure how good these were, but it might help explain some of the perceived gap.

I think this is probably more about underrating Malone than overrating Lalonde in all likelyhood. And it's a good point that Lalonde was generally considered better.

arrbez 11-17-2010 10:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Leafs Forever (Post 29017307)
Hmm. Very interesting and nice stuff arrbez.

Lalonde did spend some time out west and put up some good numbers there, seemingly, however, that Malone didn't. Not sure how good these were, but it might help explain some of the perceived gap.

Yeah, his last NHL season before going out west was pretty poor though (14 points in 20 games). It could have been a down year he recovered from, but it also could have been the WCHL being the weakest of the 3 major leagues. The WCHL is the hardest of those leagues for me to get a read on, anyone have some insight?

seventieslord 11-17-2010 10:25 PM

Just comparing raw totals and points per game averages throughout seasons is a very inexact science because scoring levels changed drastically throughout the seasons. For example, In a 5.0 GPG environment, Lalonde could double Malone's output and Malone could do the same to Lalonde in an 8.0 GPG environment 3 years later and although both are relatively impressive, Malone would look better. You actually see this happen to some degree when he outscores Lalonde 85-50 during the two highest-scoring WW1 years.

Of course, this also ignores a lot of seasons in which Lalonde was playing and productive, such as his western years, his OPHL seasons, and his time in the IHL.

The last time I looked, Lalonde scored more goals, assists, and points, and though it was in significantly more games, he also had better per-game averages. But I'll check again. I'll use the SIHR database as it is continually updated with reconstructed assists:

Lalonde:

MHL Pro: 1-0-0-0
FAHL: 2-1-0-1
IHL: 18-29-4-33
NHA: 108-163-28-191
NHL: 99-124-42-166
OPHL: 20-61-0-61
PCHA: 15-27-0-27
SOHA: 7-8-0-8
W(C)HL: 75-48-20-68
X-Games: 5-13-0-10 (normally I would not include these but I've learned they were highly competitive with the Patricks trying to prove their league was a solid product)


Malone:

ECHA: 12-8-3-11
CHA: 3-5-0-5
OPHL: 12-10-0-10
NHA: 125-179-38-209
NHL: 126-143-32-175
X-Games: 2-0-0-0

Lalonde's career totals:

350-474-94-568 (1.35-0.31*-1.62)

*APG includes only seasons of leagues where assists are recorded, PPG excludes nothing)

Including only leagues that had a realistic chance of competing for the Stanley Cup:

297-362-90-452 (1.22-0.32*-1.52)

Malone's career totals:

280-345-73-418 (1.23-0.28*-1.49)

Including only leagues that had a realistic chance of competing for the Stanley Cup:

266-335-73-408 (1.26-0.28*-1.53)

Lalonde just did more for longer.

And one thing I can't get over: Malone had 1 goal in 30 games past his 32nd birthday. Lalonde had 126 goals in 143 games past age 32, with 45 assists to boot.

RabbinsDuck 11-17-2010 10:31 PM

Great post - I find it hard to believe LaLonde and Malone should be separated to such a degree.
Obviously rhe problem becomes comparing eras, which is really hard to guage for these early guys.

seventieslord 11-17-2010 10:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by arrbez (Post 29017777)
Yeah, his last NHL season before going out west was pretty poor though (14 points in 20 games). It could have been a down year he recovered from, but it also could have been the WCHL being the weakest of the 3 major leagues. The WCHL is the hardest of those leagues for me to get a read on, anyone have some insight?

The WCHL and PCHA played a split schedule for two seasons, and the WCHL actually had a winning record against the PCHA. The reason we tend to consider it weaker is likely just a lack of knowledge about it. If you look at the western players (circa 1924, before the two leagues merged) who went on to have at least decent NHL careers, the WCHL produced more stars (Cook, Oliver, Keats, Hay, Irvin, Simpson, Shore, Dutton, Gardiner, McVeigh, Gagne, Reise, Sheppard, Hainsworth) than the PCHA (Duncan, MacKay, Boucher, Fraser, Loughlin, Fredrickson) - career timing affects this a little bit, with respect to Walker, Foyston, Morris, Holmes, Halderson, Winkler, and a couple others.

seventieslord 11-17-2010 10:59 PM

I realize that those career averages downplay Malone a bit because of those 30 games with one goal past age 32. We could simply remove those seasons and recalculate everything, but the, that doesn't do anything for Lalonde, who was highly productive past 32. We'd have to add up their best 10 seasons, or something, to come up with a comparison more fair.

One thing that has already been done that attempts to normalize from season to season:

1910-1926 goal and assist records, based on my consistency studies:

top-2-5-10-15-20

Lalonde goals: 3-9-10-11-11
Lalonde assists: 2-3-3-6-8
Malone goals: 4-6-8-9-9
Malone assists: 1-2-4-5-6

Bolded are metrics where Malone exceeds Lalonde: top-2 goalscoring seasons, and top-10 playmaking seasons.

This excludes Lalonde's 1907 season in the IHL, where his 8th place season put him likely on the fringes of the top-20 overall, his 1908 OPHL-leading season that I would wager to be top-5 overall, and his 1909 season, 2nd in the OPHL that I would also call a top-5 season, top-10 at worst.

arrbez 11-17-2010 11:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by seventieslord (Post 29018932)
One thing that has already been done that attempts to normalize from season to season:

1910-1926 goal and assist records, based on my consistency studies:

top-2-5-10-15-20

Lalonde goals: 3-9-10-11-11
Lalonde assists: 2-3-3-6-8
Malone goals: 4-6-8-9-9
Malone assists: 1-2-4-5-6

Bolded are metrics where Malone exceeds Lalonde: top-2 goalscoring seasons, and top-10 playmaking seasons.

But Malone outscored Lalonde 8 of the 10 seasons they played together, often in convincing fashion. I'm not sure it matters that Lalonde won scoring titles when Malone wasn't around. Those scoring finishes make it look otherwise, but in head-to-head competition Malone was the better offensive player.

seventieslord 11-18-2010 12:04 AM

Due to the differences in scoring from year to year, that may not be an accurate representation. I'm not going to do the legwork when the authors of The Hockey Compendium did a decent job. Their top seasons for ideal goals between these two are as follows:

Lalonde 1910: 71
Malone 1913: 71
Lalonde 1919: 59
Malone 1917: 58
Malone 1918: 57

Those are the only seasons that make their top-75. Doesn't tell us that much, except that Lalonde's best seasons were statistically as impressive as Malone's best.

nik jr 11-18-2010 12:29 AM

any documentation of a general opinion of the time that lalonde was better than malone?

it seems to me that he was, but i don't really know, and i have not been able to find much about malone in old newspapers, probably partially b/c he played for quebec.

seventieslord 11-18-2010 12:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nik jr (Post 29020497)
any documentation of a general opinion of the time that lalonde was better than malone?

it seems to me that he was, but i don't really know, and i have not been able to find much about malone in old newspapers, probably partially b/c he played for quebec.

This is from The Trail, Vol. 1:

Quote:

Newsy Lalonde was the greatest and most colorful hockey player of the era covered by this record....His ability as a hockey and lacrosse player is legendary. More has been written about this athlete, both in praise and abuse, than possibly any other. his followers turned out to cheer him and others bought their way in to scream "Get Lalonde!" Great hockey stars shone in Newsy's era but they never could move the limelight for long from the original flying frenchman.

A great fighter with a fiery temper, he went after opponents, spectators and even teammates on occasion. All the bad men of his time carried marks of their tangles with Newsy... A born leader, he was almost always the captain or playing manager of his team. There were no desultory performances without incurring the whiplash of his tongue.

In 1911 he rejoined the Canadiens... He was fairly active in his fistic and stick battles this year and the roars of "Get lalonde!" reached a crescendo. In 1919 they won the championship of the NHL. They went west to defend the cup against Seattle and in this series Newsy was sensational and won the acclaim of his west coast critics. It was practically Lalonde against Seattle in the second game when he scored all (4 of) the Canadien goals.

He scored more goals than any other player of this era. He was frequently referred to both in the east and the west as the greatest player in the game....The most colourful player hockey has ever seen.

He led the WCHL in scoring at the age of 36, his fifth time as a leading scorer.... A cutup to the last, they never got Lalonde.

Hippasus 11-18-2010 02:09 AM

I heard Malone was more of an upright skater, but was still considered to have decent speed despite his poor form. As for NHL numbers Malone has a less impressive PPG than Lalonde. Lalonde has the third highest career PPG in the history of the NHL after the two obvious ones.

GP: 99 G: 124 A: 27 PTS: 151 - Lalonde - PPG: 1.525
GP:125 G: 146 A: 18 PTS: 164 - Malone - PPG: 1.312

But why was Cyclone Taylor ranked higher than both? So he tore up the PCHA, big deal. Lalonde in his one season there, six years prior, did about as well as Taylor's best season there. Both Malone's and Lalonde's NHL numbers look better.

All the stats in this post come from Hockeydb.com.

BM67 11-18-2010 08:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by arrbez (Post 29007646)
Conclusions:

Pretty much any way you slice it, Malone was the better offensive player. Peak, Prime, Longevity, Per-Game, etc. The only argument that can be made for Lalonde is playoffs, based mainly on one colossal year.

Your 10 year span leaves out only 4 years before for Malone, but 8 years before (some are not "major league" seasons though) and 3 years (plus 5 games over 3 more seasons) after for Lalonde. Longevity goes to Lalonde by a wide margin.

It's like comparing Hawerchuk to Messier. Messier started playing before Hawerchuk, and was still playing long after. Hawerchuk out pointed Messier in 7 of his first 10 seasons. Was Hawerchuk better?

I certainly question how great Lalonde was from time to time, but not to the point that I'd put him below Malone. His long career make his totals look great, but his multiple scoring titles show he was no Gartner. He was inconsistent and injury prone, but he's more Mario Lemieux than Lindros or Forsberg.

Morenz, Lalonde, and Taylor: Comparison

seventieslord 11-18-2010 10:15 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hippasus (Post 29021231)
I heard Malone was more of an upright skater, but was still considered to have decent speed despite his poor form. As for NHL numbers Malone has a less impressive PPG than Lalonde. Lalonde has the third highest career PPG in the history of the NHL after the two obvious ones.

GP: 99 G: 124 A: 27 PTS: 151 - Lalonde - PPG: 1.525
GP:125 G: 146 A: 18 PTS: 164 - Malone - PPG: 1.312

But why was Cyclone Taylor ranked higher than both? So he tore up the PCHA, big deal. Lalonde in his one season there, six years prior, did about as well as Taylor's best season there. Both Malone's and Lalonde's NHL numbers look better.

All the stats in this post come from Hockeydb.com.

The NHA was just the NHL under a different name (really, the right thing to do after the past 93 years would be to accept it and make the NHA stats part of the official record) so it's a disservice to both players to exclude their NHA seasons.

Why would it not be a big deal that Taylor tore up the PCHA? There were a ton of great players there who got into the HHOF. The league proved on many occasions it could compete with the NHA/NHL (it only wrestled two cups away but the W/L record was much closer than the series W/L record indicates, and believe it or not, they actually outscored the NHA/NHL in total)

With all that said, it wouldn't be blatantly incorrect to claim it was a lesser league; it might have been. But the degree to which Taylor outscored the rest of the league is downright cartoonish:

PCHA Scoring Leaders:

Name GP G A Pts PIM GPG APG PPG Best 5 G Best-5 A Best-5 Pts
Cyclone Taylor 130 159 104 263 65 1.22 0.80 2.02 1, 1, 1, 2, 2 1, 1, 1, 1, 1 1, 1, 1, 1, 1
Tommy Dunderdale 241 194 60 254 494 0.80 0.25 1.05 1, 1, 1, 3, 6 3, 4, 5, 6, 6 1, 1, 3, 3, 5
Smokey Harris 252 156 90 246 416 0.62 0.36 0.98 2, 3, 5, 6, 7 1, 1, 2, 2, 4 1, 2, 3, 4, 7
Mickey MacKay 192 159 82 241 193 0.83 0.43 1.26 1, 1, 2, 5, 6 1, 2, 2, 2, 4 2, 2, 2, 3, 5
Bernie Morris 167 155 76 231 137 0.93 0.46 1.38 1, 2, 2, 2, 4 1, 2, 2, 2, 3 1, 2, 2, 2, 4
Frank Foyston 202 174 53 227 133 0.86 0.26 1.12 1, 1, 2, 3, 4 5, 5, 7, 8, 11 2, 3, 3, 4, 4
Eddie Oatman 196 129 81 210 278 0.66 0.41 1.07 3, 3, 4, 5, 6 1, 3, 4, 4, 5 3, 3, 4, 4, 6
Jack Walker 186 82 58 140 31 0.44 0.31 0.75 4, 7, 9, 9, 11 3, 4, 4, 4, 6 4, 8, 9, 9, 10
Frank Fredrickson 105 93 46 139 83 0.89 0.44 1.32 1, 3, 4, 4, DNP 1, 2, 2, 3, DNP 1, 2, 2, 3, DNP

Before heading west and becoming a rover, Taylor was also the best defenseman in the East. Stats don't necessarily prove this as defensemen scored very little, but contemporary reports confirm that he was both dazzling and valuable.

Hippasus 11-18-2010 10:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by seventieslord (Post 29023930)
The NHA was just the NHL under a different name (really, the right thing to do after the past 93 years would be to accept it and make the NHA stats part of the official record) so it's a disservice to both players to exclude their NHA seasons.

Why would it not be a big deal that Taylor tore up the PCHA? There were a ton of great players there who got into the HHOF. The league proved on many occasions it could compete with the NHA/NHL (it only wrestled two cups away but the W/L record was much closer than the series W/L record indicates, and believe it or not, they actually outscored the NHA/NHL in total)

With all that said, it wouldn't be blatantly incorrect to claim it was a lesser league; it might have been. But the degree to which Taylor outscored the rest of the league is downright cartoonish:

PCHA Scoring Leaders:

Name GP G A Pts PIM GPG APG PPG Best 5 G Best-5 A Best-5 Pts
Cyclone Taylor 130 159 104 263 65 1.22 0.80 2.02 1, 1, 1, 2, 2 1, 1, 1, 1, 1 1, 1, 1, 1, 1
Tommy Dunderdale 241 194 60 254 494 0.80 0.25 1.05 1, 1, 1, 3, 6 3, 4, 5, 6, 6 1, 1, 3, 3, 5
Smokey Harris 252 156 90 246 416 0.62 0.36 0.98 2, 3, 5, 6, 7 1, 1, 2, 2, 4 1, 2, 3, 4, 7
Mickey MacKay 192 159 82 241 193 0.83 0.43 1.26 1, 1, 2, 5, 6 1, 2, 2, 2, 4 2, 2, 2, 3, 5
Bernie Morris 167 155 76 231 137 0.93 0.46 1.38 1, 2, 2, 2, 4 1, 2, 2, 2, 3 1, 2, 2, 2, 4
Frank Foyston 202 174 53 227 133 0.86 0.26 1.12 1, 1, 2, 3, 4 5, 5, 7, 8, 11 2, 3, 3, 4, 4
Eddie Oatman 196 129 81 210 278 0.66 0.41 1.07 3, 3, 4, 5, 6 1, 3, 4, 4, 5 3, 3, 4, 4, 6
Jack Walker 186 82 58 140 31 0.44 0.31 0.75 4, 7, 9, 9, 11 3, 4, 4, 4, 6 4, 8, 9, 9, 10
Frank Fredrickson 105 93 46 139 83 0.89 0.44 1.32 1, 3, 4, 4, DNP 1, 2, 2, 3, DNP 1, 2, 2, 3, DNP

Before heading west and becoming a rover, Taylor was also the best defenseman in the East. Stats don't necessarily prove this as defensemen scored very little, but contemporary reports confirm that he was both dazzling and valuable.

I was playing devil's advocate. I can see better why he is considered so great. I didn't realize we were talking about a defenseman here. These are the numbers I got, which I added up from totals from the PCHA, NHA, NHL, WCHL, WHL, and CAHL.

Name GP G A PTS PPG PIM
Malone 144 187 18 205 1.424 33
Lalonde 190 199 47 246 1.295 250
Taylor 59 66 1 67 1.136 0

seventieslord 11-18-2010 10:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hippasus (Post 29040078)
I was playing devil's advocate. I can see better why he is considered so great. I didn't realize we were talking about a defenseman here. These are the numbers I got, which I added up from totals from the PCHA, NHA, NHL, WCHL, WHL, and CAHL.

Name GP G A PTS PPG PIM
Malone 144 187 18 205 1.424 33
Lalonde 190 199 47 246 1.295 250
Taylor 59 66 1 67 1.136 0

main problem is that you're using hockeydb, which is far from complete.

for free stats, hockey-reference.com is the best, provided the player played in the NHL or made the HHOF.

If looking for even better stats, pay for an SIHR membership, no one has ever regretted it.

Taylor was only a d-man in the east, and the above stats don't capture that. In the PCHA he was a rover.

BM67 11-19-2010 07:07 AM

One thing to keep in mind when dealing with the early era is the wide swing in scoring from year to year.

Here are the goals and assists per game numbers for the east and west for the multi-league era from the Hockey Compendium.

SeasonE GPGW GPGE APGW APG
1911-129.0611.20--
1912-138.589.30-3.78
1913-148.429.624.534.88
1914-158.1210.092.814.41
1915-167.537.922.694.51
1916-1710.249.644.365.50
1917-189.936.904.124.28
1918-198.225.824.223.29
1919-209.535.744.392.87
1920-218.476.213.743.70
1921-227.735.534.442.86
1922-236.466.464.252.63
1923-245.315.332.622.42
1924-254.946.522.963.28
1925-264.455.202.332.67

I note that the hockey-reference.com numbers for Lalonde include assists for the 1912-13 season, but none for Malone.

overpass 11-19-2010 01:25 PM

Good work with the stats. But I have a hard time overruling reputation with stats for this distant era.

If you read old game summaries in the Toronto Star or other papers from the NHA days, they often give the most praise to the players who are most active all around the ice and do the most backchecking, not the players who scored the most. For example, there was one game summary I read from 1913-14 when Tommy Smith scored 5 goals for Quebec in a 6-1 victory, but the writeup in the paper said Rusty Crawford was widely considered the man of the match for his tremendous speed and brilliant play all over the ice. (From reading other game summaries, Smith was considered to be the worst loafer in the league and strictly a goal-scorer.) It's certainly possible that they were overrating the high-effort, low-skill players, but they were the ones watching the games and it's hard to say they were wrong with the limited stats we have.

So if Lalonde was considered the better player despite similar or inferior scoring stats, maybe he was simply the better defensive or all-around player.

TheDevilMadeMe 11-19-2010 03:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by overpass (Post 29048801)
Good work with the stats. But I have a hard time overruling reputation with stats for this distant era.

If you read old game summaries in the Toronto Star or other papers from the NHA days, they often give the most praise to the players who are most active all around the ice and do the most backchecking, not the players who scored the most. For example, there was one game summary I read from 1913-14 when Tommy Smith scored 5 goals for Quebec in a 6-1 victory, but the writeup in the paper said Rusty Crawford was widely considered the man of the match for his tremendous speed and brilliant play all over the ice. (From reading other game summaries, Smith was considered to be the worst loafer in the league and strictly a goal-scorer.) It's certainly possible that they were overrating the high-effort, low-skill players, but they were the ones watching the games and it's hard to say they were wrong with the limited stats we have.

So if Lalonde was considered the better player despite similar or inferior scoring stats, maybe he was simply the better defensive or all-around player.

Makes sense. And in an era when players played the full 60 minutes, every player had to take on every role. You couldn't just be an offensive specialist and then count on the 2nd or 3rd line to do the defensive work.

overpass 11-19-2010 04:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe (Post 29050543)
Makes sense. And in an era when players played the full 60 minutes, every player had to take on every role. You couldn't just be an offensive specialist and then count on the 2nd or 3rd line to do the defensive work.

Or, players could be offensive specialists, but their teammates would have to cover for them defensively and score fewer goals themselves.

I checked out the game stories from the three games that Joe Malone missed during the 1913-14 season while he played for Quebec.

Quebec won 2 games and lost 1 by scores of 6-1, 6-4, 3-4. With Malone, they scored 5.6 and allowed 3.8 goals per game. Without Malone, they scored 5.0 and allowed 3.0 goals per game.

Toronto Star, Feb 5, 1914 (Quebec won 6-1, Tommy Smith scored 5 goals): Crawford was the bright star of the evening, playing brilliant hockey and outspeeding every man on the Canadien team.

Toronto Star, Feb 9, 1914 (Quebec won 6-4, Tommy Smith scored 4 goals): Quebec have improved their forward lines very much by using Crawford regularly. He, Smith, and Marks make a good trio. Crawford’s specialty is his strong back-checking, and, with Marks to help him out in this respect, he makes it hard for the opposing forwards. The forwards also are working more combination than on earlier visits here and going in closer for shots.

Smith, while he loafs almost all the time, never fails to be on the job for a pass, and his shooting is a feature of the forward line.


Toronto Star, Feb 12, 1914 (Quebec lost 4-3, Tommy Smith scored 2 goals): For Quebec, the most noticeable player on the ice was Tommy Smith, not for any remarkable playing, but for his persistent off-ice loafing. Tommy was always ready to join in any Quebec rush if some one else would carry the puck three-quarters of the way up the rink to where he was usually loafing. Jack Marks back-checked like a fiend and was the most useful man on the Quebec team.

It looks to me that, with Malone out, Quebec brought Crawford in. They played more defensively as a team, with the exception of Tommy Smith* who provided almost all their scoring and nothing else. But overall, they didn't drop off as much as you might think by losing Malone's offensive production.

Just one example, and it's a small sample of 3 games (although these players played close to the full 60 minutes), but I think it's interesting at least.

*Smith scored 28 goals in 17 games playing with Malone (including 9 in one game against the Wanderers), and Malone scored 24 goals in those games. With Malone out, Smith scored 11 goals in 3 games.


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