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The History of Hockey Relive great moments in hockey history and discuss how the game has changed over time.

What unhealthy/out of shape stars would have benefitted most by being a bit smarter?

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Old
09-02-2013, 01:18 AM
  #51
whatname
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Theo Fleury. You can't fault the guy after what he's been through at such a young age though. I wouldn't say being smarter, but more about receiving professional help sooner.

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09-02-2013, 01:39 AM
  #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reckoning View Post
Like Lafleur, Mike Bossy and Denis Potvin were both heavy smokers, though I don't know how much better any of them could be expected to have been.

Ian Turnbull had a reputation of liking to relax and enjoy himself a little too much away from the rink. He had the talent to be as good as Salming (see the way he stepped up after Salming's injury in the '78 playoffs), but the conditioning and desire weren't at that level.
I suspect smoking and drinking had something to do with Lafleur's sudden decline

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09-02-2013, 03:55 AM
  #53
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What about Kevin Stevens, sure it's not only about cocaine - injuries played a role too...

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09-02-2013, 10:58 AM
  #54
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Originally Posted by Killion View Post
No, not at all. Your journeyman players, vast majority of the league likely did just that. But not the top 20%, and Phil Esposito was certainly that by 72, as in top 5%. If he was having to work summers beyond about 1969/70 Id be very surprised.
Alright even if it is the summer of 1970, that places Esposito at 28 years old. I assume the big money would have come from endorsements and such after the Bruins Cup win (I assume he'd get some endorsements somewhere). So if Esposito is saying that he worked in the summer until he was 30 years old, is it that big of a deal that he may or may not be two years off and it was really 28?

He went home to the Soo in his summers. 1967 he was definitely working at the steel mill. It isn't that hard to believe.

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Old
09-02-2013, 11:11 AM
  #55
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Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
Alright even if it is the summer of 1970, that places Esposito at 28 years old. I assume the big money would have come from endorsements and such after the Bruins Cup win (I assume he'd get some endorsements somewhere). So if Esposito is saying that he worked in the summer until he was 30 years old, is it that big of a deal that he may or may not be two years off and it was really 28?

He went home to the Soo in his summers. 1967 he was definitely working at the steel mill. It isn't that hard to believe.
Oh sure, absolutey thats fair, and neither I nor anyone else meant any disrespect to Phil Esposito. He is one of the great story tellers, raconteurs of the game, likes to embellish a bit and thats perfectly acceptable as he's more than earned that right. What I objected to was the inference that he basically left the steel plant in August of 72 to go play his heart out for Team Canada. By that time, and thank God, player salaries for the elites had increased substantially. Though tell ya what? I bet guys like Henderson, Bill White & others did indeed still have to work summers and or through the season & even post 72 Summit Series. Whats really appalling about that Summit Series & the Canada Cups' that followed was that they all essentially volunteered to play as Eagleson promised them that the rewards would be increased pension benefits for all. Well, as we know, whatever profits were realized, seemed to mysteriously vanish into numbered Swiss Accounts, off-shore in the Bahamas', payola for various members of the Soviet politburo, loans to business associates & family members, spent on townhomes in London, just on & on.

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Old
09-02-2013, 11:32 AM
  #56
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Originally Posted by Killion View Post
Oh sure, absolutey thats fair, and neither I nor anyone else meant any disrespect to Phil Esposito. He is one of the great story tellers, raconteurs of the game, likes to embellish a bit and thats perfectly acceptable as he's more than earned that right. What I objected to was the inference that he basically left the steel plant in August of 72 to go play his heart out for Team Canada. By that time, and thank God, player salaries for the elites had increased substantially. Though tell ya what? I bet guys like Henderson, Bill White & others did indeed still have to work summers and or through the season & even post 72 Summit Series. Whats really appalling about that Summit Series & the Canada Cups' that followed was that they all essentially volunteered to play as Eagleson promised them that the rewards would be increased pension benefits for all. Well, as we know, whatever profits were realized, seemed to mysteriously vanish into numbered Swiss Accounts, off-shore in the Bahamas', payola for various members of the Soviet politburo, loans to business associates & family members, spent on townhomes in London, just on & on.
I see what you mean. I guess we can only ask Phil Esposito if we ever meet him, and I haven't yet. It would be interesting to know if a 152 point man was working at a steel mill in the summer of 1971. From all accounts from him, he wasn't going to be working there in the summer of 1972 anyway. He and Tony had a hockey school they planned on running that summer that got squashed because of the Russian series. So when he says "worked until 30" maybe he doesn't include the year he turned 30. I don't know.

As for Henderson, in the summer of 1972 he and his wife were planning a trip that summer when Eagleson told him to cancel it so he could play. So Henderson, who was an average NHLer, wasn't working that summer, so it seems. So who knows. Every player had a different circumstance I guess. Inheriting money and such, good investments, who knows. But there is no doubt that by 1972 players didn't HAVE to work in the summer, or at least once the WHA started.

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09-02-2013, 11:44 AM
  #57
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Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
But there is no doubt that by 1972 players didn't HAVE to work in the summer, or at least once the WHA started.
Ya, certainly by late 71-72 there was absolutely crazy money being thrown around by the WHA in trying to kick-start their new league, the Hull contract of course & his exclusion from Team Canada 72 that resulted from his signing with Winnipeg. Later the legal challenge to the NHL draft age of eligibility from Ken Linesman. Player Wars. It was a fascinating era, time, especially if you were a player as all of a sudden new options appeared. Rewards finally for guys who had toiled in the minors for years & instant gratification for talented players of 18 who previously werent even eligible until 20, very serious coin being offered to leave junior, go play in the WHA. Like winning the lottery. Apprenticeship over early. Some classic cases of crash & burn. Too much too soon.

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09-02-2013, 03:18 PM
  #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
It would be hard to stick to a training regimen when you have a job in the off season though.



Quotes out of Esposito's book "Thunder and Lightning"

pg. 35 - "When my first daughter Laurie was born August 14, 1965 I wasn't at the hospital with Linda. I was working my shift at the steel plant. We were living with my parents at the time. I ended up working at that steel plant until I was 30 years old."

pg. 54 - In 1967 on his trade to Boston negotiating with GM Milt Schmidt: "I want $12,000 a year."
"Impossible" Milt said.

Eventually Esposito negotiated a deal that gave him $16,500 only because he hit his bonuses. This was the 1967-'68 season. Even taking inflation into account, there is no doubt that isn't enough to support a family especially since you aren't getting paid in the summer. He was working at the mill in the summer of 1967 as well. Probably did it the next year and the year after that. In 1970 the Bruins win the Cup, he is 28 years old at this time. Could have worked in the summer then as well. Maybe got some endorsements after that and perhaps (although this is speculation) he didn't have to work after that. He and Tony cancelled their hockey school in the summer of 1972 for the Summit Series. So when Esposito says he had to work in the summers until he was "30 years old" that isn't far off. He was 30 in 1972. Might have worked in 1971 when he was 29 at the steel mill.

It is very hard to believe in this day and age. Patrick Kane assaults a cabby for pennies, Evander Kane posts a picture of himself with a "money" phone. Even old coots like Alfredsson are turning down $4 million contracts. But this is not how the game always was. Red Kelly was a Senator in Ottawa (sort of like Congress for all you non-Canadians out there). Tim Horton had his own business, and we all know how that turned out.

There is a story of Wayne Cashman giving Bobby Hull free tickets to one of the Summit Series games. Bobby wondered why he was doing this and Cashman simply stated "Thanks to you my salary tripled". So yeah, up until 1972 it isn't hard to believe that players had to work in the off season. Esposito had a family at that time. Hard to believe, but it happened.
Beg to differ because $16,500 was certainly enough to support a family through 1970. Perhaps not in style, but certainly enough to rent an apartment and feed a family and buy and operate a car. I know because I did it on quite a bit less in Los Angeles, which is not the cheapest place to live, in the late 1960s and early 1970s. I was a poverty lawyer working in Watts and later Venice, and my salary was about $800 per month. I had two young children and my wife did not work. We could afford simple luxuries, like a diaper service! And I coud afford to go to hockey and association football matches whenever I wanted. We lived comfortably.

Using this inflation calculator from the Bureau of Labor Statistics

http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm

$16,500 in 1970 had the buying power of $99,338.51 in 2013 dollars. My 1970 salary of $9,600 had the buying power of $57,796.95 in 2013 dollars. Things were a whole lot cheaper back in the day.

Edit: Maurice Richard's last salary, his highest, of $25,000 in 1959 works out to $200,683.85 in present day dollars. Of course, Richard lived in Canada, but I believe the Canadian dollar was worth more than the U.S. dollar then.

Heh, heh. I remember my teacher in grade school in rural Ontario (near Keswick on Lake Simcoe, then populated year round mostly by the very poor) reading us a news story during the daily "current events" session we had back in 1953. It seemed garbage men (now sanitation workers) in New York City had negotiated a salary of $100 per week. My teacher, the best I ever had, said he wished he was a garbage man in New York City. He was probably getting $50 per week.


Last edited by Peter9: 09-02-2013 at 03:47 PM.
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Old
09-02-2013, 03:55 PM
  #59
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Phil Esposito today receives between $15,000 & $25,000 plus expenses within North America, $45,000 - $74,000 internationally to speak at whatever event. More than double what he earned in 1963 as a player at the league minimum of app $7000 over a season with Chicago at the low end. I cant remember who he had endorsement contracts with back in his Glory Days with Boston, but I do recall he along with Ron Dugay while they were with the Rangers had a deal with Vidal Sassoon jeans amongst others, Phil also with Grecian Formula I believe it was who also had Maurice Richard under contract for awhile.

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09-02-2013, 04:01 PM
  #60
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A 64 yrs old women broke a world record swim by going from cuba to florida.The swim was without a cage nothing more than incredible.Shes 64 not a spring chicken.Other individuals in their 20 and 30 yrs old have tried but failed.It took her 48 hrs.

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Old
09-02-2013, 04:26 PM
  #61
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I see... so essentially what your saying thom is that age can sometimes be irrelevant, depending on the individual of course.

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Old
09-03-2013, 01:20 AM
  #62
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A 64 yrs old women broke a world record swim by going from cuba to florida.The swim was without a cage nothing more than incredible.Shes 64 not a spring chicken.Other individuals in their 20 and 30 yrs old have tried but failed.It took her 48 hrs.
So...she certainly would have benefited by keeping herself in better shape. Could have shaved an hour or two off that?

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09-03-2013, 12:15 PM
  #63
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Earlier on I said Derek Sanderson should be the poster boy for this thread, but I think I've changed my mind...



/and he was the one who was supposed to have the easiest transition to the NHL

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09-04-2013, 04:32 PM
  #64
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Red wings now you must just be 10 yrs old.Where was Guy Lafleurs sudden decline.After his last 100 pts season he had 84 pts in 66 games.He missed 75 games in 3 of his last 4 yrs.Even in his last full season he led the habs in pts.The guy took almost 4 yrs off and played with the rangers scoring close to 50 pts despite breaking a foot.Then was offered 1 million dollars to play with Kings but he decline and played final 2 seasons with Quebec and was 2nd leading scorer on a poor Quebec team having scored 34pts in 39 games again another serious injury a broken jaw.If you want totalk about Partying maybe you should ask Michael Jordan and Joe Montana.Read the books about them

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