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08-28-2012, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Never said you did but there are misreads of the second half of the O6 era when it comes to defensemen like Al Langlois, Bob Turner, Lou Fontinato
you could be right about Langlois and Turner. It's not easy to judge a player who lasted a long time in the O6 on a strong team, yet never earned any recognition as a strong player themselves. One one hand you could say "Turner was the Habs #5, but on a weaker team he might have been a #2", but on the other hand it's quite possible he was as mediocre as any other team's #5 and carried by the Habs' stronger players.

The thing about Turner and Langlois, though, is that when they played, just 30 defensemen could play in the NHL. So even if they were the worst defensemen in the NHL, it's arguable they were roughly 30th best in the world. multiply by three or whatever you want to multiply by to translate to modern terms, (i choose 3) and it's like saying Turner or Langlois compares to a modern day #3 defenseman. not great at the MLD level, but extremely safe.

With Fontinato it is much different. He earned all-star/norris recognition in two separate seasons (1959, 1963), plus in two other seasons there are strong indicators. In 1957 Blueline magazine said that by the end of the season he was regarded as one of the best defensemen in the league, and Bernie Geoffrion said in his book that he'd have given him a vote in the 1962 season for how he performed following the trade. (this was of course substantiated by the fact that he actually earned votes the next year)

and if none of that matters to you, the "fallback" that applies to Turner and Langlois, still applies to him. In fact, I don't think you would apply a multiple; you often talk like the 30th best in 1960 is similar to the 30th best in 2012 and the talent pool hasn't actually gotten larger. if that's the case, Fontinato, Langlois and Turner, at worst, equate to 30th today, or #1/1a/2 defensemen. I don't believe that, but that does fit in with things you've said in the past.

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