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11-07-2012, 07:57 PM
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Postseason All Star Teams - Brimsek, Broda, and Durnan

IMPORTANT NOTE - From 1935-1956, the 1st Team All Star was the goalie who led the league in GAA (among goalies who played at least 75% of the games) 100% of the time. The 2nd Team All Star was NOT always the goalie who was 2nd. Does this mean we should take 2nd Teams as seriously as 1st Teams for this era?

"3rd Team All Stars" are unofficial, but are based off the same pool of votes that determine 1st and 2nd Team. We have them for every season of the careers of these goalies.

Frank Brimsek
1st Team All Star (1939, 1942)
2nd Team All Star (1940, 1941, 1943, 1946, 1947, 1948)

Brimsek was top 2 in All Star voting every year for a decade starting in his rookie year (1939), except the 2 season he missed World War 2. He never finished 3rd in voting.

Turk Broda
1st Team All Star (1941, 1948)
2nd Team All Star (1942)
3rd Team All Star (1943, 1947, 1949, 1950)

Broda was a rookie in 1937, but not an All Star until 1941. He was top 3 in All Star voting every year for a decade except the 3 seasons he missed due to World War 2. (He only played 16 games in 1945-46, as a late return from the war).

Bill Durnan
1st Team All Star (1944, 1945, 1946, 1947, 1949, 1950)
3rd Team All Star (1948)

Durnan's career lasted only 7 seasons, but he was a 1st Team All Star all 6 times his team made the playoffs, and 3rd in voting the 1 season his team didn't. Two important caveats:

1) See above - the 1st Team AS seemed to automatically go to the leader in GAA so long as he played the full season.

2) His 1944 and 1945 All Star Teams were literally against AHL competition, and his 1946 All Star Team wasn't much better. Every other NHL starter from 1943 went off to war for 1944 and 1945 (including the only 3 to get All Star votes in 1943 - Johnny Mowers, Frank Brimsek, and Turk Broda), and Durnan was left to beat up on what was left. Durnan's 1946 All Star Team wasn't much better, as Brimsek (34 of 50 games) and Broda (16 of 50 games) arrived late from the war. Brimsek was a 2nd Teamer, despite only playing 68% of the games in an era where starters usually played 100%

Here's an article from the beginning of the 1946-47 season:

With the return of Johnny Mowers, completing the old "Big Three" of National Hockey League netminding, Goalie Bill Durnan of the Stanley Cup Montreal Canadiens may as well prepare now for a first-class struggle to defend his stranglehold on the Vezina trophy for these last three years

Durnan, like the Canadiens themselves, has drawn accusations of "ersatz king" of the netminders from some observers, who contended through the latter war years that the test of greatness for both the team and its individuals will come in this season when the roster of returning stars from the service is completed.
The other two of goaltending's big three, Frankie Brimsek of Boston and Walter (Turk) Broda of Toronto Maple Leafs rejoined their clubs late last season and this will be their first full test. Now Manager Jack Adams of Detroit Red Wings has decided that the 31 year old Mowers is "ready to go".

That means the old big 3 and Johnny-come-lately Durnan will all be showing their wares tonight when the NHL stages its first all-out hockey night of the season that started last Wednesday.
Associated Press via the Calgary Herald, Oct 26, 1946

I'll post the All Star Teams of the rest in the next post.

Last edited by TheDevilMadeMe: 11-08-2012 at 01:34 AM. Reason: clarified that games played had a role
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