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Jean Beliveau vs. Bobby Hull

View Poll Results: Jean Beliveau or Bobby Hull?
Hull 54 40.00%
Beliveau 81 60.00%
Voters: 135. You may not vote on this poll

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Old
09-15-2013, 05:23 PM
  #151
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
Bert Olmstead played with Beliveau through the late 50s. Beliveau proved early in his career that he could handle himself, but why make him have to?
That was where I was coming from, too.

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09-15-2013, 05:49 PM
  #152
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This is interesting C58. Several sites, HHOF Player Profile, Wiki, Pelletiers etc all feature this same story. How Ferguson was called up to essentially act as a deterrent if you will in protecting not only Beliveau but so too some of the smaller Habs. The fight with Green, the then supposed reigning heavyweight just "12 seconds in" with Fergie taking him out decisively. Meme thats oft repeated and described in some detail. John then going on to score 2 goals in that game, a win over Boston....

I remember him quite clearly as he was "the enemy" of my Leafs. Did not like him at all but tell ya what? Certainly respected him. Could seriously play hockey, more intimidation by mere presence, maybe 150 odd PIM's per average season which in comparison to enforcers who followed extremely low numbers. Even calling him an "enforcer" per se' a serious misnomer, as he was much more than that, wasnt one dimensional by any stretch of the imagination. Only played 8 seasons starting in 63. Wanted to fight an exhibition match against George Chuvalo who'd gone the full distance against Ali but the Habs were havin none of that. Said some time after he'd retired that he'd only done so because he was "scared about what I might do to someone out there". Was also said Pollock tried to talk him into coming back early 70's as it was felt the Habs were being pushed around a bit too much.
John Ferguson was more than a one dimensional player. As for Ted Green's reputation as being the reigning heavyweight, I have to ask this, did he ever fight Orland Kurtenbach when in the NHL?

I had Green and Kurtenbach in the Western Hockey League. It was the shortest and easiest fight that I ever had to break up. Actually my partner and I didn't have to break it up. One and only one punch was thrown by Kurtenbach to Green's jaw and Green went down for the count, with the Trainer having to come onto the ice to tend to him. Green never got to throw a punch.

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09-15-2013, 09:50 PM
  #153
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...Actually my partner and I didn't have to break it up. One and only one punch was thrown by Kurtenbach to Green's jaw and Green went down for the count, with the Trainer having to come onto the ice to tend to him. Green never got to throw a punch.
Ya I think he was one of the "unofficial top heavyweights" of the 60's for sure, and a guy I think the Bruins likely regretted trading to Toronto where he played for just one season. He'd been up & down early in his career, Rookie of the year with the old WHL Canucks late 50's; played in Springfield under Shore, originally Rangers property grabbed by Boston in the intra-league draft in 61. They traded/sold him to the Seals back in the WHL, realized the mistake & reacquired him. Funny story about how as a fan favorite in Boston it was noted that he didnt really hit his stride until Christmas so one year a group of fans showed up in Santa Suits in October cheering him on.... Had a really bad injury to his back late 60's requiring a spinal fusion & missed a year, then taken by Vancouver in 1970, first Captain through 74 & surprisingly played exceptionally well going from previously 3rd to 1st line status, Powerplay, putting up decent numbers before retiring.

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09-15-2013, 11:52 PM
  #154
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Revisionist narrative by John Ferguson. 1963-64 season NHL preview and Canadiens preview:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...6978%2C1618376
What in that article would dispel the notion that Ferguson was expected to protect Beliveau? Besides, would we expect the Canadiens to announce or admit it if Ferguson was expected to deter opposing players from getting frisky with Beliveau?

On the other hand...

"He (Ferguson) started his NHL career in 1963 on a line with Beliveau and Geoffrion. Toe Blake said, I want you to play with the big guy and protect him."

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...52164340,d.eWU

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09-16-2013, 12:50 AM
  #155
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Originally Posted by BobbyAwe View Post
What in that article would dispel the notion that Ferguson was expected to protect Beliveau? Besides, would we expect the Canadiens to announce or admit it if Ferguson was expected to deter opposing players from getting frisky with Beliveau?

On the other hand...

"He (Ferguson) started his NHL career in 1963 on a line with Beliveau and Geoffrion. Toe Blake said, I want you to play with the big guy and protect him."
I guess really "multi-purpose". He'd led the AHL in Goals & PIM's, and pretty much all of the clubs at that time with the exception of Montreal had some agitators, Boston several, Shack in Toronto & so on. Fergie was much more than just a fighter or "enforcer" of course, called "The Policeman" sure enough but a guy who surprisingly had soft hands for a pugilist.

Rather "interesting" skating style to say the least but really some serious hockey smarts, moved from the Beliveau line when it became quite apparent his talents & presence on the team as any kind of a full-time minder for Jean Beliveau certainly werent required, that he be on the ice with him at the same time & better used on another line altogether.

Honestly I dont ever remember anyone really taking liberties with Beliveau nor with Geoffrion to any great extent before Fergusons arrival. In fact Boom Boom there was a bit of a Psych Job himself. Some serious stick swinging incidents, strong as an ox, fast, heavy hitter, tough as nails. Beliveau as well created a lot of room for himself with his size, strength & reach, using his stick, angles, leverage.

But yes, your linked article & several accounts do indeed repeat that same refrain. That Ferguson was brought up to protect Beliveau, Henri Richard & others, the first "true enforcer" employed by a team in the league. Yet history itself tells us otherwise as clearly he was far more a complete player than just that.

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09-16-2013, 02:06 AM
  #156
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Inaccurate Narrative

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Originally Posted by BobbyAwe View Post
What in that article would dispel the notion that Ferguson was expected to protect Beliveau? Besides, would we expect the Canadiens to announce or admit it if Ferguson was expected to deter opposing players from getting frisky with Beliveau?

On the other hand...

"He (Ferguson) started his NHL career in 1963 on a line with Beliveau and Geoffrion. Toe Blake said, I want you to play with the big guy and protect him."

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...52164340,d.eWU
Again John Ferguson provides the narrative and no one else. The latest link has a number of inaccuracies:

Rod Gilbert was born in Pointe aux Trembles, eastern tip of the Island of Montreal. Arena is named after him:

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1484893/bio

Your source is inaccurate about the formation of the Olmstead-Beliveau-Geoffrion trio. During the 1954-55 season. At the start of the 1954-55 season, rookie Jackie Leclair replaced the retired Elmer Lach as the center between Olmstead and Maurice Richard:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...7186%2C1237275

Dink Carroll opening night preview article.

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09-16-2013, 08:08 AM
  #157
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It seems to me Fergy was fairly often the LW on the Beliveau Coournoyer line, especially after Gilles Tremblay retired in 69, though they did switch him around a fair bit. Tremblay had issues with Asthma IIRC and missed a fair bit of some of his final seasons.

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09-16-2013, 09:17 AM
  #158
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Again John Ferguson provides the narrative and no one else. The latest link has a number of inaccuracies:

Rod Gilbert was born in Pointe aux Trembles, eastern tip of the Island of Montreal. Arena is named after him:

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1484893/bio

Your source is inaccurate about the formation of the Olmstead-Beliveau-Geoffrion trio. During the 1954-55 season. At the start of the 1954-55 season, rookie Jackie Leclair replaced the retired Elmer Lach as the center between Olmstead and Maurice Richard:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...7186%2C1237275

Dink Carroll opening night preview article.
Your logic is flawed. You are trying to to disqualify sources on the basis of whether they contain unrelated technical inaccuracies when you already apparently accept the fact that Ferguson did claim that he was told he was needed to provide some protection for Beliveau. So the only question then becomes why should we assume Ferguson was lying? Because we can't find an old newspaper clip where the Canadien's made an official statement that they felt Beliveau could use some help in that regard? Don't you agree they would never admit that publicly?

So why do you assume Ferguson was lying about this?

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09-16-2013, 09:25 AM
  #159
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1969-70 Season

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Originally Posted by Crosbyfan View Post
It seems to me Fergy was fairly often the LW on the Beliveau Coournoyer line, especially after Gilles Tremblay retired in 69, though they did switch him around a fair bit. Tremblay had issues with Asthma IIRC and missed a fair bit of some of his final seasons.
1969-70 Canadiens season saw a definite lack of stability at LW. Lemaire played out of position, Ferguson missed about 1/3 of the season and the rest was rather patchwork:

http://www.hockey-reference.com/teams/MTL/1970.html

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09-16-2013, 10:11 AM
  #160
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First Game

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Originally Posted by BobbyAwe View Post
Your logic is flawed. You are trying to to disqualify sources on the basis of whether they contain unrelated technical inaccuracies when you already apparently accept the fact that Ferguson did claim that he was told he was needed to provide some protection for Beliveau. So the only question then becomes why should we assume Ferguson was lying? Because we can't find an old newspaper clip where the Canadien's made an official statement that they felt Beliveau could use some help in that regard? Don't you agree they would never admit that publicly?

So why do you assume Ferguson was lying about this?
Basically Ferguson's narrative comes up short on a number of points. The double minors with Ted Green, 12 seconds into his first game in the NHL have been discounted already.

Protecting Beliveau is a real hoot. December 1, 1963 after Ed Westfall and John Ferguson started a fight, Jean Beliveau had to intervene when Bob McCord tried to join. The Westfall / Ferguson fight is when Ferguson had a tendon on his thumb accidently sliced by a linesman:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...=7131%2C111437

Net result was that Jean Beliveau was losing ice time sticking up for John Ferguson. When Ferguson returned he played on a different line - mainly with Ralph Backstrom.

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09-16-2013, 12:29 PM
  #161
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Basically Ferguson's narrative comes up short on a number of points. The double minors with Ted Green, 12 seconds into his first game in the NHL have been discounted already.

Protecting Beliveau is a real hoot. December 1, 1963 after Ed Westfall and John Ferguson started a fight, Jean Beliveau had to intervene when Bob McCord tried to join. The Westfall / Ferguson fight is when Ferguson had a tendon on his thumb accidently sliced by a linesman:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...=7131%2C111437

Net result was that Jean Beliveau was losing ice time sticking up for John Ferguson. When Ferguson returned he played on a different line - mainly with Ralph Backstrom.
All that said I think the whole team benefited from Ferguson's presence, and he was able to contribute in other ways as well.

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09-16-2013, 12:58 PM
  #162
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All that said I think the whole team benefited from Ferguson's presence, and he was able to contribute in other ways as well.
It was said many of the Habs "played bigger" knowing Fergie was in the line-up so ya, for sure, valuable cog in the machine. Important player. Very scary Dude when he got upset with someone for taking liberties. Very effective player with some smarts, decent finish around the net. Created a lot of room out there for himself & his team mates.

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10-22-2013, 09:21 AM
  #163
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Basically Ferguson's narrative comes up short on a number of points. The double minors with Ted Green, 12 seconds into his first game in the NHL have been discounted already.

Protecting Beliveau is a real hoot. December 1, 1963 after Ed Westfall and John Ferguson started a fight, Jean Beliveau had to intervene when Bob McCord tried to join. The Westfall / Ferguson fight is when Ferguson had a tendon on his thumb accidently sliced by a linesman:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...=7131%2C111437

Net result was that Jean Beliveau was losing ice time sticking up for John Ferguson. When Ferguson returned he played on a different line - mainly with Ralph Backstrom.
Here's a quote from Bobby Orr in a recent interview...

"It's like in the old days of Beliveau. If you took liberties with him it was understood Fergie was going to be there. That fear of getting beat-up is a great deterrent."


Gee, that sounds a lot in line with Ferguson's claim that he was brought up to protect Beliveau. Was Bobby Orr imagining this too?

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10-22-2013, 11:41 AM
  #164
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^^^Most accounts mention Beliveau however Pollock believed the team overall lacked toughness & grit; enter John Ferguson. In particular Ted Green of Boston had been running roughshod over the Habs (league wide really) who by 63 hadnt won a Cup since the late 50's. Game was changing, morphing, recruiting a player like Fergie pretty much mandatory in acting as a deterrent to the clubs like Boston who couldnt win through skill so instead had a propensity to go all A.N.I.M.A.L. All teams had agitators and cheap shot artists, Montreal an anomaly in playing it clean so opponents would try & get them riled up, in particular highly emotional guys like Boom Boom Geoffrion then you could throw them off their game, get them taking retaliatory penalties, put them in the Box. If getting seriously hammered, why not just start a riot? "We'll meet again" type dealeo, and meanwhile here's a Haymaker to remember me by. I believe Blake simply started Ferguson on Beliveau's line in that first game against the Bruins (12 seconds in the fight with Green) to send a message, never intending to keep him there indefinitely. Totally staged. Goes on in that game after knocking Green silly in putting up points. Ferguson could play alrighty as history has shown.


Last edited by Killion: 10-22-2013 at 12:33 PM.
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10-22-2013, 04:03 PM
  #165
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^^^Most accounts mention Beliveau however Pollock believed the team overall lacked toughness & grit; enter John Ferguson. In particular Ted Green of Boston had been running roughshod over the Habs (league wide really) who by 63 hadnt won a Cup since the late 50's. Game was changing, morphing, recruiting a player like Fergie pretty much mandatory in acting as a deterrent to the clubs like Boston who couldnt win through skill so instead had a propensity to go all A.N.I.M.A.L. All teams had agitators and cheap shot artists, Montreal an anomaly in playing it clean so opponents would try & get them riled up, in particular highly emotional guys like Boom Boom Geoffrion then you could throw them off their game, get them taking retaliatory penalties, put them in the Box. If getting seriously hammered, why not just start a riot? "We'll meet again" type dealeo, and meanwhile here's a Haymaker to remember me by. I believe Blake simply started Ferguson on Beliveau's line in that first game against the Bruins (12 seconds in the fight with Green) to send a message, never intending to keep him there indefinitely. Totally staged. Goes on in that game after knocking Green silly in putting up points. Ferguson could play alrighty as history has shown.
Would you agree, at least, that the proposition that Beliveau was losing ice time in the penalty box because he had to stick up for Ferguson is a patented absurdity?

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10-22-2013, 04:53 PM
  #166
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Would you agree, at least, that the proposition that Beliveau was losing ice time in the penalty box because he had to stick up for Ferguson is a patented absurdity?
... ah, ya. Where did you see that posted?

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10-22-2013, 04:56 PM
  #167
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Here's a quote from Bobby Orr in a recent interview...

"It's like in the old days of Beliveau. If you took liberties with him it was understood Fergie was going to be there. That fear of getting beat-up is a great deterrent."


Gee, that sounds a lot in line with Ferguson's claim that he was brought up to protect Beliveau. Was Bobby Orr imagining this too?
I think Bobby Orr is right on. I am currently reading Derek Sanderson's book and he made this comment "Beliveau was standing there with his head down. I threw my gloves off and punched him right in the face. His teammate John Ferguson went ballistic. I was behind the net, and I swear ferguson was trying to climb over it to get a piece of me!"

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10-22-2013, 10:27 PM
  #168
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... ah, ya. Where did you see that posted?
Right in the post i just replied to.

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10-22-2013, 11:11 PM
  #169
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Right in the post i just replied to.
Your referring to this I assume?...

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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Net result was that Jean Beliveau was losing ice time sticking up for John Ferguson. When Ferguson returned he played on a different line - mainly with Ralph Backstrom.
I'll let C58 explain what he means by that though it isnt very hard to figure out or understand.... I will say however that Fergusons style of play was drawing both Beliveau & Richard into situations that werent exactly conducive nor complimentary to their skill sets. Penalties then assessed, Beliveau, Richard & or Ferguson himself heading to the Penalty Box, the rest to the bench. There are varying degree's of "sticking up" for ones linemates, and I dont think the op's suggesting Beliveau fought Fergies fights for him. Both Beliveau & Richard were put into the position of having to hold back opposition players from gang jumping Ferguson and in doing so, well, there goes the game, Toe Blake behind the bench fuming, Ferguson moved off that line tout sweet.

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10-23-2013, 10:08 AM
  #170
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Toews or Ovechkin types...

I'll take Ovechkin.

I vote Hull.

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10-23-2013, 10:19 AM
  #171
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Toews or Ovechkin types...

I'll take Ovechkin.

I vote Hull.
Ovechkin is a good modern comparable for Hull, but Toews is a poor one for Beliveau. I don't know a good comparable for Beliveau - maybe a cross between Toews and Malkin? I don't think Crosby really plays the same style.

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10-23-2013, 12:44 PM
  #172
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I'll let C58 explain what he means by that though it isnt very hard to figure out or understand.... I will say however that Fergusons style of play was drawing both Beliveau & Richard into situations that werent exactly conducive nor complimentary to their skill sets. Penalties then assessed, Beliveau, Richard & or Ferguson himself heading to the Penalty Box, the rest to the bench. There are varying degree's of "sticking up" for ones linemates, and I dont think the op's suggesting Beliveau fought Fergies fights for him. Both Beliveau & Richard were put into the position of having to hold back opposition players from gang jumping Ferguson and in doing so, well, there goes the game, Toe Blake behind the bench fuming, Ferguson moved off that line tout sweet.
That's what players do when a fight erupts - they hold back opposition players from being the 3rd man in and the opposition players do the same to them. That's normal hockey protocol and the non-fighting players who pair-off are not penalized for that. There are only additional penalties if additional fights break out.

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10-23-2013, 02:08 PM
  #173
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That's what players do when a fight erupts - they hold back opposition players from being the 3rd man in and the opposition players do the same to them. That's normal hockey protocol and the non-fighting players who pair-off are not penalized for that. There are only additional penalties if additional fights break out.
Yes of course. And those mini-scrums in holding back others often erupt into Battle Royales' of there own with multiple penalties being dished out as the blood lust spreads like a virus. Get right outta hand. Absurd. Just a few weeks ago we had Bernier & Miller of the Leafs & Sabres, the goalies mind you going at it. Completely pointless. Ferguson was a total Firecracker quite capable of starting WW3. Often incensed, enraged just about every player on the ice & bench. Your Beliveau or Henri Richard trying to hold back whomever, that players going to get pretty ticked off at you for doing so & the next thing you know, your the object of their anger for doing so. Not helpful, complimentary if your the number one playmaking center & a winger, one of the top 2 defensive pairings & your getting nailed with 2min's or 5, misconduct or whatever because one of your team mates raises to the bait by the opposition who are getting hammered & decides to go psycho.

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10-24-2013, 12:53 PM
  #174
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Yes of course. And those mini-scrums in holding back others often erupt into Battle Royales' of there own with multiple penalties being dished out as the blood lust spreads like a virus. Get right outta hand. Absurd. Just a few weeks ago we had Bernier & Miller of the Leafs & Sabres, the goalies mind you going at it. Completely pointless. Ferguson was a total Firecracker quite capable of starting WW3. Often incensed, enraged just about every player on the ice & bench. Your Beliveau or Henri Richard trying to hold back whomever, that players going to get pretty ticked off at you for doing so & the next thing you know, your the object of their anger for doing so. Not helpful, complimentary if your the number one playmaking center & a winger, one of the top 2 defensive pairings & your getting nailed with 2min's or 5, misconduct or whatever because one of your team mates raises to the bait by the opposition who are getting hammered & decides to go psycho.
So we are to believe the Canadien's management ended up regretting bringing up Ferguson to adopt the role of policeman and that his fighting ability/toughness was actually a liability to the team because it led to his teammates being penalized?

I have to confess this discussion with you guys is getting more and more enjoyable as your position becomes more and more absurd

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10-24-2013, 02:45 PM
  #175
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Third Man In Rule

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That's what players do when a fight erupts - they hold back opposition players from being the 3rd man in and the opposition players do the same to them. That's normal hockey protocol and the non-fighting players who pair-off are not penalized for that. There are only additional penalties if additional fights break out.
Sadly for your point that does not apply since the "Third Man in Rule" was instituted in 1977 well after Beliveau, Ferguson and other concerned players retired.

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