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Round 2, Vote 5 (HOH Top Goaltenders)

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Old
11-28-2012, 10:37 AM
  #26
tarheelhockey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohashi_Jouzu View Post
I also refuse to consider the PCHA as "equivalent" to the NHA of the time, and treat accomplishments at that level like I would a modern day player in the KHL or AHL.
Just picking a random season, 1916-17:

Portland - Tommy Murray, Dick Irvin, Tommy Dunderdale, Smokey Harris, Moose Johnson, Charlie Tobin

Seattle - Hap Holmes, Frank Foyston, Bernie Morris, Jim Riley, Jack Walker, Cully Wilson, Bobby Rowe

Spokane - Lloyd Cook, Dubbie Kerr, Ran McDonald, Lester Patrick

Vancouver - Hugh Lehman, Si Griffis, Gordon Roberts, Mickey Mackay, Frank Patrick, Barney Stanley, Cyclone Taylor


Hall of Famers are bolded. League champion Seattle (not Vancouver!) beat Montreal 3 games to 1, outscoring the Habs 23-10, to win the Stanley Cup.

I don't buy that this league was close to an AHL or even KHL level. Every team looks like it could have played in the NHL and not seemed out of place.

To me, the issue isn't so much PCHA vs NHL in 1917, it's both of these leagues in 1917 vs the consolidated NHL a decade later.

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11-28-2012, 10:54 AM
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohashi_Jouzu View Post
But how many of those times were actually just one team - the Fred Taylor Vancouver Millionaires? And FWIW, I think KHL teams like Dynamo Moscow, CSKA, etc could hold their own in a 2 game or best of 5 series against any NHL club - maybe even win. I think you dismiss the relative strength of the KHL and AHL by an equivalent measure to my dismissal of the PCHA.
The PCHA regular season standings do not suggest that there was one powerhouse team, they suggest a very competitive league, something you could have looked up in a matter of a few minutes. I understand posting "what if" questions when the information is not easily available, but please at least do some research before making statements like that.

I could be underestimating the KHL...I have seen very little of that league. I do not think I am underestimating the AHL at all. The best AHL team would be easily beaten by the worst NHL teams, and if it were best on best they would be destroyed.


Last edited by Hawkey Town 18: 11-28-2012 at 11:04 AM.
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Old
11-28-2012, 10:55 AM
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
I don't buy that this league was close to an AHL or even KHL level.
Shouldn't it be the other way round? "KHL or even AHL level"

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11-28-2012, 11:07 AM
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Theokritos View Post
Shouldn't it be the other way round? "KHL or even AHL level"
Poor phrasing on my part. I consider the KHL higher than the AHL.

I was trying to express that I consider the PCHA "even" higher than the KHL in its day. Whether it was actually as strong as the NHL, I'll leave that to the real experts on this subject, but it clearly wasn't some kind of glorified minor league.

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11-28-2012, 11:15 AM
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveG View Post
But more importantly, we get to the Smith vs Fuhr debate that we started to hit on in the last thread. I do really wish we had more complete stats for Smith and his peers earlier in his career (sv% mostly) just to see how the two compare to their respective competition at that time. Eyeball test told me that Smith was the better goalie by a bit, but I was also way too young to appreciate what I was seeing when Smith was still playing and even when Fuhr was in his prime.
Those stats are available and I can run the numbers for you if you want. What do you want to see, Smith vs. teammates, how Smith ranked relative to the league?

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11-28-2012, 11:20 AM
  #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
I don't buy that this league was close to an AHL or even KHL level. Every team looks like it could have played in the NHL and not seemed out of place.

To me, the issue isn't so much PCHA vs NHL in 1917, it's both of these leagues in 1917 vs the consolidated NHL a decade later.
Agreed. Even with respect to the consolidated NHL a decade later, as was mentioned in the Worters discussion last thread the Pittsburgh Pirates went from the amateur USAHA in 1924-25 to a third place finish in the NHL in 1925-26, which again really doesn't imply that there was a massive gap between the NHL and other leagues.

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11-28-2012, 11:52 AM
  #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ContrarianGoaltender View Post
Those stats are available and I can run the numbers for you if you want. What do you want to see, Smith vs. teammates, how Smith ranked relative to the league?
Both would be nice. I basically have everything from 83-84 on that I need but Smith vs the league and also Smith vs Chico and Melanson from that time frame would be nice to have. Basically not just to help compare him vs the league but also to help compare what kind of effect the Isles defense may have had vs the rest of the league at the time. We have team stats readily available, but how much the individual accounts for that would be a huge help for me at least in this comparison over the next 2-3 rounds.

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11-28-2012, 12:01 PM
  #33
Dennis Bonvie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quoipourquoi View Post
I believe we already have one in Charlie Gardiner, so it wouldn't be unprecedented to support Roy Worters despite it.
Good point.

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11-28-2012, 12:11 PM
  #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
Worters definitely carried his teams more than Hainsworth and Thompson. That much is obvious from contemporary sources.

Whether losing goalies belong on the list, is a matter of personal principles I guess. I tend to look more at their performance and individual results than their team results, but to each his own.
Esposito carried his team more than Dryden or Tretiak carried theirs.

I'd agree about looking more at performance and individual results, but that's more about what someone else saw in this case.

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11-28-2012, 12:25 PM
  #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkey Town 18 View Post
The PCHA regular season standings do not suggest that there was one powerhouse team, they suggest a very competitive league, something you could have looked up in a matter of a few minutes. I understand posting "what if" questions when the information is not easily available, but please at least do some research before making statements like that.
It was a rhetorical question; it was Vancouver in four of the PCHA's seven decided Cup appearances (of course I know the standings/results, lol). You're right, though, I should give more love to Seattle as well, but it's the Millionaires that had Hall of Famers at every position except coach (player/coach Frank Patrick), so... they represent the PCHA's "ultimate" level for me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkey Town 18 View Post
I could be underestimating the KHL...I have seen very little of that league. I do not think I am underestimating the AHL at all. The best AHL team would be easily beaten by the worst NHL teams, and if it were best on best they would be destroyed.
I'd like to know what the average among AHLers is in any given year for career NHL games played. Considering the majority of all prospects pass through the AHL on their way to their NHL primes, and considering the experience of the guys that typically fill in rosters around them in the AHL, I have a hard time believing that it would be nearly as lop-sided as you suggest. Probably a bigger divide than the PCHA/NHL one though, I'll concede.

As far as the KHL is concerned, it should be pointed out just how "normal" NHLer production is over there right now, and that it has been decently successful in recent years at supplementing their lineups with players from outside Russia (17 of top 30 scorers and 16 of top 30 goalies are from outside of Russia, and I think Rinne is the only full-time NHLer of the bunch).

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11-28-2012, 12:45 PM
  #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveG View Post
Both would be nice. I basically have everything from 83-84 on that I need but Smith vs the league and also Smith vs Chico and Melanson from that time frame would be nice to have. Basically not just to help compare him vs the league but also to help compare what kind of effect the Isles defense may have had vs the rest of the league at the time. We have team stats readily available, but how much the individual accounts for that would be a huge help for me at least in this comparison over the next 2-3 rounds.
Here are Smith, Resch, and Melanson relative to the league:

http://hockeygoalies.org/bio/smithb.html
http://hockeygoalies.org/bio/resch.html
http://hockeygoalies.org/bio/melanson.html

(Open "REGULAR SEASON STATISTICS" and "POSTSEASON STATISTICS").

Non-standard terms that I use:
  • GD = goals prevented above league average
  • GAR = goals prevented above "replacement" level (currently arbitrarily defined as 0.015 lower than league average).
  • SNW% = winning percentage, given average goal support and shots allowed
  • SNW/SNL = actual decisions (W+L+T) translated to SNW%
  • Z-SCORE = assuming a normal distribution (dubious, I know), and under the hypothesis that the goaltender was actually of league average quality, how remarkable was his actual performance that year (in terms of deviations from the mean)?

(Note that all of these are various transformations of save percentage, and have similar limitations. I'm not here to argue about the positives and negatives of save percentage, just to offer the data).

I do things similarly to TCG (with some variations, I'm sure) but these shouldn't be wildly different from his totals.

I also haven't built the functionality to total the postseason statistics just yet, but it's pretty straightforward and I hope to have it implemented soon.

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11-28-2012, 12:58 PM
  #37
tarheelhockey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis Bonvie View Post
I'd agree about looking more at performance and individual results, but that's more about what someone else saw in this case.
It may not be entirely subjective, though. The Jan 27, 1929 issue of the New York Times has Worters stopping 659/675 shots in 16 games at that juncture in the season. That's a .972 while facing 42 shots a game. Now, John Ross Roach is also cited as stopping 790/813 (.972) and facing nearly 41 shots per game. So it's hard to know exactly how eye-popping those numbers are in the context of that historically low-scoring season, but we can be sure that Worters was at the top of the statistical heap at least some of the time.

I'm not sure how often the league sent out those shots/saves updates, but it would be really useful to find them.


Last edited by tarheelhockey: 11-28-2012 at 01:01 PM. Reason: sourced back to original publication
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11-28-2012, 01:14 PM
  #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BM67 View Post
Considering Hainsworth a "1930s goalie" is almost like considering Esposito a "1980s goalie". His pro career started in 1923 at the age of 28.
yes, same with Worters and Thompson. their pro careers started in 1923 and 1924. They are 20s/30s goalies who played more in the 30s than they did in the 20s. My apologies for the terminology - I thought it made sense....

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11-28-2012, 01:21 PM
  #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis Bonvie View Post
Esposito carried his team more than Dryden or Tretiak carried theirs.

I'd agree about looking more at performance and individual results, but that's more about what someone else saw in this case.
Worters played for the Americans who were even worse than the Rangers at this time. If the Americans are bad, then the Pirates were an abject failure. Dinging him for W-L just really doesn't make sense to me when his teams were worse than Gardiner's.

There's a reason Lester Patrick exaggerated that Worters would halve the Rangers GA if he moved across town.

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11-28-2012, 01:35 PM
  #40
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Taco MacArthur's site has all the raw data, but here's hopefully a fairly quick and easy way to be able to gauge how Smith ranked in terms of save percentage relative to his teammates, the other top goalies and the rest of the league. Here are the top 5 in save percentage for each season Smith played significant games. I used Hockey Reference's rate cutoffs (basically min. 25 GP for an 80 game season), and added in Smith and his playing partner if they weren't in the top 5, along with league average.

1972-73:

RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Ken DrydenMTL54.926
2Tony EspositoCHI56.917
3Doug FavellPHI44.916
4Jim RutherfordPIT49.912
5Cesare ManiagoMNS47.910
-League AverageNHL78.896
21Billy SmithNYI37.878
23Gerry DesjardinsNYI44.866

1973-74:

RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Bernie ParentPHI73.933
2Tony EspositoCHI70.928
3Dan BouchardATL46.909
4Doug FavellTOR32.909
5Michel LarocqueMTL27.908
9Gerry DesjardinsNYI36.902
14Billy SmithNYI46.897
-League AverageNHL78.896

1974-75:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Rogie VachonLAK54.926
2Bernie ParentPHI68.918
3Gary EdwardsLAK27.916
4Chico ReschNYI25.915
5Dan BouchardATL40.914
10Billy SmithNYI58.904
-League AverageNHL80.890

1975-76:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Chico ReschNYI44.928
2Ken DrydenMTL62.927
3Dan BouchardATL47.911
4Wayne StephensonPHI66.908
5Billy SmithNYI39.908
-League AverageNHL80.890

1976-77:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Ken DrydenMTL56.920
2Chico ReschNYI46.917
3Billy SmithNYI36.916
4Michel LarocqueMTL26.910
5Denis HerronPIT34.910
-League AverageNHL80.891

1977-78:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Ken DrydenMTL52.921
2Tony EspositoCHI64.914
3Bernie ParentPHI49.912
4Mike PalmateerTOR63.911
5Billy SmithNYI38.909
6Chico ReschNYI45.907
-League AverageNHL80.889

1978-79:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Chico ReschNYI43.913
2Ken DrydenMTL47.909
3Mike PalmateerTOR58.909
4Tony EspositoCHI63.901
5Don EdwardsBUF54.899
6Billy SmithNYI39.899
-League AverageNHL80.883

1979-80:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Denis HerronMTL34.907
2Tony EspositoCHI69.903
3Chico ReschNYI45.901
4Bob SauveBUF32.901
5Pete PeetersPHI40.898
6Billy SmithNYI38.898
-League AverageNHL80.882

1980-81:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Rick St. CroixPHI27.913
2Richard SevignyMTL33.908
3Reggie LemelinCGY29.902
4Don EdwardsBUF45.898
5Pete PeetersPHI40.897
6Billy SmithNYI41.895
9Chico ReschNYI32.894
-League AverageNHL80.876

1981-82:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Denis HerronMTL27.912
2Grant FuhrEDM48.898
3Billy SmithNYI46.898
4Rolie MelansonNYI36.896
5Gilles MelocheMNS51.894
-League AverageNHL80.873

1982-83:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Rolie MelansonNYI44.910
2Billy SmithNYI41.905
3Pete PeetersBOS62.904
4Murray BannermanCHI41.901
5Andy MoogEDM50.891
-League AverageNHL80.875

1983-84:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Rolie MelansonNYI37.903
2Billy SmithNYI42.896
3Tom BarrassoBUF42.893
4Reggie LemelinCGY51.893
5Glen HanlonNYR50.890
-League AverageNHL80.873

1984-85:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Warren SkorodenskiCHI27.903
2Pelle LindberghPHI65.899
3Andy MoogEDM39.894
4Mike LiutSTL/HAR45.889
5Reggie LemelinCGY56.888
8Kelly HrudeyNYI41.886
13Billy SmithNYI37.879
-League AverageNHL80.875

1985-86:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Bob FroesePHI51.909
2Kelly HrudeyNYI45.906
3Clint MalarchukQUE46.895
4Rick WamsleySTL42.894
5Don BeaupreMNS52.892
16Billy SmithNYI41.881
-League AverageNHL80.874

1986-87:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Ron HextallPHI66.902
2Brian HaywardMTL37.894
3Bob SauveCHI46.894
4Glen HanlonDET36.893
5Patrick RoyMTL46.892
23Kelly HrudeyNYI46.881
-League AverageNHL80.880
38Billy SmithNYI40.869

1987-88:
RankGoalieTeamGPSV%
1Patrick RoyMTL45.900
2Pete PeetersWSH35.898
3Tom BarrassoBUF54.896
4Brian HaywardMTL39.896
5Kelly HrudeyNYI47.896
7Billy SmithNYI38.894
-League AverageNHL80.880

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Old
11-28-2012, 02:33 PM
  #41
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if you weigh it based on the number of minutes he played per season, Smith was, on average, 12 sv% points above the league average during his career.

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11-28-2012, 04:45 PM
  #42
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Hugh Lehman - the dominant goalie in the history of the Western leagues that rivaled the early NHL

We should take the PCHA seriously

Quote:
Originally Posted by wikipedia
The Pacific Coast Hockey Association (PCHA) was a professional men's ice hockey league in western Canada and the western United States, which operated from 1911 to 1924 when it then merged with the Western Canada Hockey League (WCHL). The PCHA was considered to be a 'major' league of ice hockey and was important in the development of the sport of professional ice hockey through its innovations.

The league was started by the Patrick family, professional hockey players from Montreal, building new arenas in Vancouver and Victoria, British Columbia. After a few years of play, the league was accepted by the Stanley Cup trustees as being of a high enough standard that teams from its league were accepted for Stanley Cup challenges. Starting in 1915, the league entered into an agreement where the Stanley Cup was to be contested between the National Hockey Association and the PCHA after the regular seasons were finished. The league struggled to make money, and various teams moved into different cities in an attempt to be successful financially. Eventually, the league, to survive, merged with the WCHL in 1924.
The WCHL would fold in 1926, ushering in the era when the NHL had all the best talent in North America. But for a number of years, the PCHA was the NHL's main rival.

After the Portland Rosebuds, an American-based team, joined the PCHA in 1914, the Stanley Cup trustees issued a statement that the Cup was no longer for the best team in Canada, but now for the best team in the world. This shows how seriously the Cup trustees took the PCHA

The structure of the Stanley Cup playoffs from 1915 to 1926 - think of the of the NHA/NHL as the Eastern Conference, the PCHA and later the WCHL as the Western Conference
  • From 1915 to 1921, the Cup final was between the PCHA champion and the NHA/NHL champion. (The NHA turned into the NHL in 1918 as a legal formality designed to expel one renegade owner and his team. It was otherwise unchanged).
  • The PCHA would would win 2 Stanley Cups in this 7 years period (vs 4 for the NHA/NHL and 1919 cancelled due to the Spanish flu). The first was in 1915 when Lehman's Vancouver Millionaires beat the NHL's Ottawa Senators in the finals. The second was in 1917 when the Seattle Metropolitans with Hap Holmes in goal beat the Montreal Canadiens in the finals, becoming the first American team to win the Cup.
  • From 1922-1924, the new Western Canadian Hockey League (WCHL), PCHA, and NHL all competed for the Cup with one alternating team having a bye to the finals. After 1924, the PCHA folded and their 2 best teams joined the WCHL.
  • In 1925 and 1926, the Cup finals were between the WCHL (now a merger of the pCHA and old WCHL) and NHL. The WCHL Victoria Cougars (with Hap Holmes in goal) beat the Montreal Canadiens in 1925 for the last Cup win by a non-NHL team.
  • After 1926, the WCHL folded and their best players joined the NHL.

Strength of the Western Leagues vs. the Eastern Leagues
  • From 1915-1926, the Western Leagues won 3 Cups to 8 Cups from the East (with one series cancelled due to the flu).
  • The WCHL was given "major" status in 1921-22 and the PCHA merged into the WCHA prior to to 1924-25. After the WCHL folded prior to 1926-27, the best players from the West joined the NHL. 6 of the top 10 NHL scorers in both 1927 and 1928 had been in the WCHL in 1926.

I think the evidence points to talent in the West going from almost as good to par with talent in the East. When the PCHA was the only Western league, it was almost on par with the NHL, and was good enough to win 2 Cups over the NHL. After the WCHL was created, I think the combined WCHL/PCHA was just as good as the NHL. For the 2 years the WCHL existed after absorbing PCHA talent, it may have been slightly better than the NHL.

Hugh Lehman was the consensus best goalie in the history of the major Western leagues

Referree Mike Ion hand-picked official all-star teams for the length of the PCHA's existence. I believe he refereed every PCHA game, but I'm not sure, so if you have to rely on the opinion of only one guy, he was the guy you wanted to rely on. These are the PCHA All Star Teams for goalie:

He picked Hugh Lehman as the PCHA 1st Team All Star in 11 of the league's 13 years of existence (1912, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1918, 1919, 1920, 1921, 1922, 1923, 1924). Mike Ion picked a 2nd Team All Star goalie in 7 of the 13 seasons. In 1917, Lehman was a 2nd Team All Star. Fellow Hall of Famer Hap Holmes was a 2nd Team All Star 5 times under Lehman.

It wasn't just the All-Star teams. Newspaper articles indicate that Lehman was the class of the West:

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Morning Leader, Feb 26, 1919
...the goaltenders, who have demonstrated that they can stop the hard shots a la George Vezina and Hugh Lehman.
From a Regina paper, infers that Lehman is the class of the West and Vezina of the East.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wes Champ, President of the Regina Vics after returning from watching 2 games of the Stanley Cup playoff series in 1931
(Charlie)Gardiner is even better than Hughie Lehman, known as "Eagle Eye' was in his prime, and the way he comes out of his goal - sometimes as much as 15 feet - just breaks the hearts of opposing sharpshooters.
The way Champ talks about Lehman, he is taking for granted that Lehman was the goalie that people in the west would compare future goalies to. Champ had owned the Regina Capitals when they competed in the WCHL, so he would have been very familiar with Lehman. (For a few years, the WCHL and PCHA played regular season games against each other).

More quotes about the perception of Hugh Lehman as the superstar goalie of the west can be found in Nalyd Psycho's profile here. The profile contains links to all the original newspaper sources used in this post.

Lehman was a star before joining the PCHA in 1912

He was 26 when he was a 1st Team All Star for the 1st Team and 38 for the last time in the PCHA. But he had already been a star in the split leagues before the PCHA was created.

In the era of Cup challenges (before the PCHA vs NHA/NHL playoffs), Lehman participated in two losing Cup challenges against the NHA champions, both in 1910.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ottawa Citizen - Mar 18, 1922
Hugh Lehman who has been a star for the last twenty years. And it could not be said that youth was served to the detriment of Lehman this time, as the veteran played equally as well as the St. Patrick's wizard.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ottawa Citizen - Apr 13, 1961
The fish-cold statistics of record books tell the story of Hugh Lehman's hockey life. Few players can match his nomadic exploits and, quite possibly, there never has been a goalkeeper who can match his ironman career.
Conclusion:

Hugh Lehman was to the Western Leagues what Georges Vezina and Clint Benedict were to the Eastern leagues. He was a dominant regular season goalie for a very long time. Lehman perhaps should have won more Cups than he did (more on that later), which is why it makes sense to rank him a little below Vezina and Benedict. But in my opinion, he is basically Tony Esposito's equal.


Last edited by TheDevilMadeMe: 11-28-2012 at 08:19 PM.
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11-28-2012, 04:50 PM
  #43
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Hugh Lehman - the story

Quotes are from Joe Pelletier's Greatest Hockey Legends site

Quote:
Though he is remembered by NHL historians as the first goalkeeper of the Chicago Blackhawks and mentor to Chuck Gardiner, one of the greatest goalies of all time, Hugh Lehman's Hall of Fame hockey career pre-dated his arrival in the National Hockey League

Born in 1885, Lehman's long hockey career in began in 1903-04 in his hometown of Pembroke, Ontario. He established himself as a top goaltender with Berlin (now known as Kitchener) of the Ontario Professional League.

Word of Lehman's stature as a top goalie reached all the way out west, where brothers Frank and Lester Patrick were creating the Pacific Coast Hockey Association and were in search of hockey players. They lured Lehman to come out west and play for New Westminster, a suburb of Vancouver. He would not disappoint, playing three seasons with the Royals and leading them to a PCHA title in 1911-12.

When the Royals folded, he moved on to the Vancouver Millionaires and it was in this city he would spend the rest of his days in the PCHA/WCHL. He led the Millionaires to the Stanley Cup in 1915, beating the powerful Ottawa Senators. The Millionaires would contend for the Cup in 1918, 1921 and 1923 because of Lehman's excellent goalkeeping, but the NHL teams proved to be too powerful in those match ups.

In 1922-23, the Millionaires became the Vancouver Maroons and Lehman continued in goal. His excellent goalkeeping in the 1923 playoff against Ottawa wasn't enough, but it won the respect of hockey writers, and even the Senators players. Frank Patrick called the Senators the greatest team he'd ever seen.

By this time Lehman had all but cemented his status as the best goalie outside of the NHL. He led the PCHA in goals against six times and played in 8 Stanley Cup finals. He was an innovator, becoming one of the earliest goalies to venture out of his net to stickhandle the puck.
http://blackhawkslegends.blogspot.co...gh-lehman.html

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11-28-2012, 04:55 PM
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Re: your comment on league strength, TDMM, how much talent did the WCHL really steal from the PCHA? My impression was that the WCHL/WHL was primarily made up of prairie stars who had previously been amateurs, and it represented a step forward in the quality of pro hockey vs amateur hockey. Stars like Duke Keats, Joe Simpson, and the Cook brothers all came out of prairie senior hockey. Western pro hockey competition was strengthened rather than diluted by the new league.

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11-28-2012, 04:55 PM
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Comparing Hugh Lehman to Tony Esposito

This was all posted during the last All Time Draft

Lehman, like Tony Esposito, was a dominant regular season goalie for a long time, but sometimes struggled with long shots in the playoffs:

From the 1923 Stanley Cup finals (Lehman's Vancouver vs. the Ottawa dynasty that was on their way to winning a third Cup in four years):

Quote:
Long shots are the bane of Lehman's life. Ottawa drove their shots nearly all from the blue line, two of them registered within the first period, and then the Senators settled back on their heels and took everything Vancouver had without waving the flag of defeat.
http://news.google.com/newspapers?ni...rontpage&hl=en

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Originally Posted by nik jr
mikita said tony esposito had trouble with long shots.

osgood is another.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sturminator
Lehman essentially equal to Tony Esposito. Both were terrific goalies, but had certain weaknesses (including perhaps a lack of focus...which may in some ways explain the regular season/postseason disparity) which were exposed when the chips were down. But they're good enough goalies that you can win even if they weren't perfect in the playoffs.


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11-28-2012, 04:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overpass View Post
Re: your comment on league strength, TDMM, how much talent did the WCHL really steal from the PCHA? My impression was that the WCHL/WHL was primarily made up of prairie stars who had previously been amateurs, and it represented a step forward in the quality of pro hockey vs amateur hockey. Stars like Duke Keats, Joe Simpson, and the Cook brothers all came out of prairie senior hockey. Western pro hockey competition was strengthened rather than diluted by the new league.
What caused the PCHA to weaken heading into the 1920s then? They got weaker both in terms of results and financially. I'll edit the line out of the post anyway, since it's not entirely clear why the PCHA seemed to get weaker as the WCHL got stronger.

Or did the PCHA not get any weaker and the NHL just figured out how to beat them regularly after 1917 (and Lehman, since it was usually Lehman in the finals on the PCHA side)?


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11-28-2012, 04:57 PM
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Thanks for the raw stats guys. Seems to confirm some long held beliefs that I've had about Smith.

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11-28-2012, 05:06 PM
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Thank you, TDMM. Very informative post for someone that only knows very basic information about the professional leagues from that time.

@anyone: What is the case against the Western League(s) being on par or basically on par with the Eastern League(s)? Maybe the Western depth was lacking perhaps to a small or moderate degree...but it's not like the best 4 teams in the West would be 4 of the worst 5 or 6 teams in the East, right? They'd assimilate pretty normally - I'd think - based on the information presented above. But I'd like to hear the other side, if there's one...

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11-28-2012, 05:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
What caused the PCHA to weaken heading into the 1920s then? They got weaker both in terms of results and financially. I'll edit the line out of the post anyway, since it's not entirely clear why the PCHA seemed to get weaker as the WCHL got stronger.
The PCHA was not drawn from local talent as the WCHL was. British Columbia doesn't have the skating conditions that the prairie provinces have for outdoor hockey. The PCHA was staffed by transplanted Easterners taking a bigger paycheck. It was in direct competition with the NHA/NHL for players. Without having done the research, I expect that the NHL teams gained a financial edge and the talent pipeline to the coast dried up.

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11-28-2012, 05:10 PM
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Just following up on the PCHA/WCHL-NHA/NHL cup era, if the 3-9 record doesn't do it for you consider the series records too.

The PCHA only won 2 series, but overall they went 16-16 against the NHL over these 7 series. The WCHL went 4-8 in their four series.

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