Esposito Without Orr
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11-24-2012, 07:33 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Originally Posted by
You're simply underestimating the value of an exceptionally strong possession and territorial game, which Orr drove.
Orr's on/off ratios in 1968 and 1969 weren't as dominant over Esposito as they were about to become, but over those two seasons, he was already 2.04/1.08 while Espo was 1.69/1.15.
Espo, being a forward, was getting more points on those goals, but Orr was already having a bigger apparent influence on both goals for and against.
Nobody else here has even given a second thought to the fact that Orr also benefitted greatly from Esposito? The 1969 Hart voting looked like this:
Esposito - 133
Beliveau - 47
Orr - 44
Is it fair to say the people who watched the games at that time had a decent enough say? I am not saying Orr wasn't a great defenseman then, he just hadn't hit his superhuman level yet and even the stats show this. Orr was a +65 in 1969 which is incredible while Esposito was hardly far behind at +56. Orr had 283 shots in 1969 which is incredible again, but it pales in comparison to what he had later and even Esposito had 351 shots in 1969 while getting anywhere from 400-550 in later years.
Even in years Orr won the Hart, Esposito was not far behind other than 1970. In 1971 the Hart voting was Orr 151-127 over Esposito. Close, and even then Esposito won the Pearson award. Espo was 3rd in Hart voting in 1972 and second in 1973 behind Clarke and ahead of Orr. Not to mention winning in 1974. By 1975 the Hart vote had Esposito out of the picture for good despite playing a full season with Orr and despite 127 points. This is often cited as a time when Esposito noticeably had things catch up with him and he was slowly declining and yet it was still a season with Orr.
The people who watched these two play gave a lot of credit to Esposito, not just once but in all of his great seasons. Yes he benefitted from Orr and to be honest so would Mario Lemieux, no one is saying he didn't. But if you are going to penalize an all-time great for playing with another all-time great it has to cut both ways. Without Esposito there is no way Orr cracks 100 assists.
Originally Posted by
Hawkey Town 18
The issue isn't what Bucyk hits without Orr...It's what Esposito himself hits without Orr. Do you really think he puts up 152 Pts without Orr? Where does 130pts come from?...the data shows that his seasonal average was 106pts without Orr. C1958 makes a good point that without Orr but with a better #1 Dman than the Bruins had after Orr that Esposito's numbers probably wouldn't be as low as they were as the "without Orr data" shows; however, that is almost impossible to quantify...How good should the replacement #1 Dman be?...What kind of chemistry does he have with Esposito? I think we can say that Esposito was a great player that made the most out of his team situation, and he should get extra credit for that, and he should also get credit as a multiple Art Ross winner, but assuming that he puts up an extra 23% more points seems out of line. I would like to see evidence that an AVERAGE #1 Dman has that effect.
I think that point went over your head a bit. You asked how he'd be without Orr. I said without Orr you'd have to drop each of the Bruins' totals a bit, including Esposito to an extent. If there is no Orr then Esposito has about 130 in my estimation in 1971. Why do I estimate that? Because I don't think the guy is all of the sudden dropped to 106 points just without Orr. That's too much. Therefore if he has 130 points and Bucyk has, say 100, and Hodge around 95 or so that leaves the scoring race looking something like this:
Esposito - 130
Bucyk - 100
Hull - 96
Hodge - 95
This is total speculation and basically I am pretending to know what the world would look like using the butterfly effect, which I can't so take it anyway you want. But that right there shows you that he has an even bigger seperation from the 2nd place finisher (which was Orr in the "real" 1971 season). That's all it was.
But I prefer reality over a mere assumption and in reality Esposito scored a goal a game and he and Orr were one of the best one-two punches in hockey history.
Those are also incredibly small sample sizes that you use. I mean you basically say that because of 4 games played without Orr in 1974 that Esposito only has 97 points as if 5 games is a large sample size. The best year out of that chart (other than 1968 or 1969 which you probably won't mention because it goes against your argument) is 1973 because it was the most time without Orr - 15 games. Esposito still has 24 points and has a 124 point year instead of 130. We're nickel and diming here, Esposito was a dominant talent in his own right. I mean, according to your own study Esposito has a better PPG without Orr in 1968 and hardly any worse of one in 1969. You'd think that would be enough reason to give Esposito his due...........
Last edited by Big Phil: 11-24-2012 at
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