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11-23-2012, 04:33 PM
  #10
Czech Your Math
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The data presented is interesting, but it's just too small a sample size to conclude much of anything. At least half the sample, which would get it closer to a significant size, is from '68 which was the first season Orr & Espo were together and before Orr was near his peak form.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
I will maintain that in two years (1971 and 1974) he is an Art Ross winner by even GREATER margins without Orr because the 2nd place finisher in each year was Orr and the next non-Bruin was a universe away.

I will say this as well because I am a big Esposito supporter, but the Bruins don't win two Cups without him. I doubt the Bruins beat the Rangers in 1972. Esposito had 24 points and then 27 points in 1970. It was a bit of an easier ride in 1970 so maybe they win without Esposito but they don't win in 1972. So really, if the stats you provided don't convince people that Esposito was an all-time great on his own merit than you should ask whether or not he was a cornerstone of a championship teams, and he was.
Espo was an all-time great with or without Orr. However, I think various aspects of his career, team and the NHL at that time make his appear significantly greater than he was. I may be wrong about that, but that's what I believe. The question is whether he was closer to the Bobby Hull level of greatness than to the Bossy/Sakic level of greatness, and I tend to think he was closer to the latter level than the former.

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