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08-18-2009, 07:11 AM
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If Bobby Orr Did Not Exist

Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
If Bobby Orr did not exist, this is Brad Park's norris voting record:

1st, 1st, 1st, 1st, 2nd, 2nd, 2nd, 8th, 9th.

A fur-time Norris winner and three-time runner-up? That's what Lidstrom was just three years ago. At that time we were already calling him the #6 or 7 best defenseman of all-time. If Lidstrom had an Orr-caliber defenseman to compete against, he'd have had the same Norris record as Park, circa 2006.

Should the existence of Bobby Orr be the only thing preventing us from calling park what he truly is - the 8th or 9th-best defenseman of all-time?

He really had no flaws as a player. He was always one of the best offensive defensemen in the league, he was excellent defensively, dominant physically, dynamite in the playoffs despite never winning a cup, and he didn't experience the late career burnout that other 70s stars did - he was getting Norris and Hart votes well into the 1980s.
Classic. If Bobby Orr did not exist.

Then the way hockey was played and coached in the mid 1960's Brad Park gets moved to forward since in junior he was rather average. Seventeen year old junior d-men with 0 -15 - 15 scoring totals are far from NHL locks. See his first two junior seasons :

A growth spurt helped.

Likewise Larry Robinson played forward into junior - see the following:

See the part about Brockville and Barry Fraser.

As for the Norris voting.Bobby Orr changed the criteria in a fashion that benefitted Brad Park since the criteria for defensemen became "in comparison to Bobby Orr". Once this becomes the norm, as it was, from the late 1960's on then it becomes rather disingeneous to factor out Bobby Orr.

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