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Jean Beliveau!

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Old
06-15-2006, 03:21 PM
  #1
Brett38
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Jean Beliveau!

What comes to your mind When you think of this guy?

To me, the word "class" comes first. He was a great hockey player, but an even nicer guy.

Any stories to tell about him?

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06-15-2006, 03:26 PM
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Tricolore#20
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Never saw him play, but from what I've heard, he was sheer brilliance and pure class. When opponents speak extremely highly of a player, it usually means that the player is a class of his own. Current players of that nature include Yzerman or Sakic, guys who people have nary a bad thing to say about.

From what I can gather (and of course I may be wrong, since I had never seen any of the Canadiens greats play), I think Beliveau is one of the reasons why Canadiens fans clamour for Vincent Lecavalier, because of certain similarities. The Rocket was more rugged than Lecavalier, while Lafleur was probably much softer than Vinny. To me, Lecavalier is a player who captures Beliveau's grace, elegance and style of play the best (of course, he may not duplicate it entirely ).

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06-15-2006, 03:29 PM
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Brett38
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I remember listening to Ted Lindsey and him saying that his mother got upset with him when he checked Beliveau in one game.

haaa, thats funny. Poor Lindsey. Even little old ladies love Beliveau...heeee!

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06-15-2006, 03:31 PM
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HabsoluteFate
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An ex co-worker of mine met Mr Beliveau in person a couple of years ago and couldn't say enough good things about him and how much of a gentleman he was to her (and everyone else)

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06-15-2006, 03:32 PM
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GoHabsGO252006
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I agree with all of the above Class all the way.

I am much too young to have ever seen him play but he is one player that I have always admired, I have ready much about him and his character as well as his play.

Things stand out to me, like a year or 2 ago when he sold much of his memorabilia to help support his single parent daughter ensuring she would have the money to put her kids through university.

All of the above said, For my birthday 2 years ago, I recieved a specially made Jean Beliveau Habs jersey from my sister. One of the greatest gifts I've ever recieved.

Grace and Class

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06-15-2006, 03:38 PM
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Guy Caballero
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Met him briefly a couple of years ago. He must have shaken 500 hands that night, as he probably does every time he goes out, but he still manages to make you feel like he's really pleased to meet you. A real gentleman.

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06-15-2006, 03:59 PM
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Brett38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoHabsGO252006
I agree with all of the above Class all the way.

I am much too young to have ever seen him play but he is one player that I have always admired, I have ready much about him and his character as well as his play.

Things stand out to me, like a year or 2 ago when he sold much of his memorabilia to help support his single parent daughter ensuring she would have the money to put her kids through university.

All of the above said, For my birthday 2 years ago, I recieved a specially made Jean Beliveau Habs jersey from my sister. One of the greatest gifts I've ever recieved.

Grace and Class

Yes, I read about that. This guy is too much. How has he been feeling lately.

I don't want to bring this up, but I think that when Beliveau passes on, he'll have one great send off. Something like the Rocket...well maybe not that big. Wouldn't surprise me though.

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06-15-2006, 04:01 PM
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There are not a lot of role models in sports, lets face it. Any kid could do a lot worse than to pattern himself after Mr. Beliveau. Don't know who comes second to him in terms of class, but they finish well up the track.

As Hab captain, Beliveau was often sought out by other players who might be having a tough time of it. Perhaps they weren't figuring they got enough ice time or maybe thought they ought to be used in a different role, something more glamourous.

Beliveau often told disgruntled teammates that he'd sit and discuss matters with them but he had a stop to make beforehand and told the teammate to accompany him. Leaving the Forum, Beliveau would take his teammate across the street the Montreal Children's Hospital where he would drop in unannounced and with no media mention made the next day. After spending a few hours with the kids in the hospital, virtually all the complaints that were going to be discussed seemed to become quite insignificant in comparison to the ordeals that the kids were going through.

I've had the good fortune to meet Mr. Beliveau on a couple occasions and, like pretty much anyone who has ever met him, came away an even bigger fan. Have also called him on occasion when working on a story about one of his teammates from year gone by and he has always made the time to chat for a few minutes.

Mr. Beliveau came into the NHL the most ought-after player of his generation and was allowed to name his own salary, something that would probably make most of us have to go out and buy bigger hats. Unlike the rest of us mere mortals he felt that he owed something to them that put him on top of the heap. His success on the ice and off it was something he is truely appreciative of, something to be cherished rather than taken for granted. He understands that privileges carry certain obligations with them and fulills them magnificently.

In short, the world would be a much more pleasant place if more of us were more like him. I'm pretty sure Jean Beliveau could walk on water even if it wasn't frozen.

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06-15-2006, 04:02 PM
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I think "the best."

Not in terms of ranking players, but in terms of the guy I would want on my team more than any other.

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06-15-2006, 04:03 PM
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He turned down a senate seat and the Governor Generalship because he felt his family required his time. What % of people would take the $ and run ? I'm by nature a cynical guy, I'm not into hero worship, the idea of the athlete as a role model, but Le Gros Bill is my exception. I hear seasoned media guys who interview famous people on a regular basis, get absolutely thrilled when they speak to him.

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06-15-2006, 04:16 PM
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I heard his tears can cure cancer . But he's never cried.

He is also registered as the only person to ever kick chuck norris's butt. And being the gentleman he is , he drove Chuck to the hospital and paid the bill.

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06-15-2006, 05:12 PM
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Qui Gon Dave
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett38
I remember listening to Ted Lindsey and him saying that his mother got upset with him when he checked Beliveau in one game.

haaa, thats funny. Poor Lindsey. Even little old ladies love Beliveau...heeee!
You sure that wasn't Brad Park? I remember him telling that story on the Legends of Hockey series, he said Beliveau was his mums favourite player and she didn't speak to him for a month after the hit.

Lindsay mentioned how much respect he had for him and how talented he was. I think he was the one who said he was the best centre to play the game. No disrespect to Gretzky or Lemieux, but he viewed Jean above everyone else.

Gordie Howe said that after he introduced his sisters to Beliveau, they instantly quit being Detroit fans and started cheering for the Habs and Beliveau.

Thank heavens for the Legends of Hockey series or I would know even less about some of the greats of the hockey world. I highly recommend it to anyone who has yet to see it. Jean Beliveau is one of the guys who i would love to know more about and would love to have seen play the game by all accounts i have heard. Hockey is a tough sport and its very easy to let your emotions get the better of you but from all I've heard, Beliveau always showed restraint while playing hard and with incredible skill and as a result, he had the respect of everybody. And this applied when he was both on and off the ice. By the sounds of it, a true gentleman who anybody, hockey player or not, should aspire to. Its unlikely the vast majority would get anywhere close to living up to his standards, but if you are going to fall short of someone, it may as well be one of the best and nicest people going.

Serious respect to Jean Beliveau

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06-15-2006, 05:19 PM
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Brett38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qui Gon Dave
You sure that wasn't Brad Park? I remember him telling that story on the Legends of Hockey series, he said Beliveau was his mums favourite player and she didn't speak to him for a month after the hit.

Lindsay mentioned how much respect he had for him and how talented he was. I think he was the one who said he was the best centre to play the game. No disrespect to Gretzky or Lemieux, but he viewed Jean above everyone else.

Gordie Howe said that after he introduced his sisters to Beliveau, they instantly quit being Detroit fans and started cheering for the Habs and Beliveau.

Thank heavens for the Legends of Hockey series or I would know even less about some of the greats of the hockey world. I highly recommend it to anyone who has yet to see it. Jean Beliveau is one of the guys who i would love to know more about and would love to have seen play the game by all accounts i have heard. Hockey is a tough sport and its very easy to let your emotions get the better of you but from all I've heard, Beliveau always showed restraint while playing hard and with incredible skill and as a result, he had the respect of everybody. And this applied when he was both on and off the ice. By the sounds of it, a true gentleman who anybody, hockey player or not, should aspire to. Its unlikely the vast majority would get anywhere close to living up to his standards, but if you are going to fall short of someone, it may as well be one of the best and nicest people going.

Serious respect to Jean Beliveau

ummmm...maybe it was. I'm starting to second guess myself now.

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06-15-2006, 05:47 PM
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22SteveBegin22
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I think Beliveau is at the absolute top of the list of people I would like to bump into in line to buy nachos at a hockey game. I would even pay for his nachos. Every time you hear him talk, he shows that he's an incredible ambassador for the habs and for hockey in general.

This is just my impression, but it seems to me like he's almost the father figure of the Canadiens organization today. He's there at all the home games, looking down on the team he helped to make great, offering stories about the golden era and rooting for the guys to return to greatness. Total class act.

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06-15-2006, 05:53 PM
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I think "Dominant".

But that makes me think of "dominating"


... and that makes me think of "dominatrix".


..and that...

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06-15-2006, 06:46 PM
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Gros Bill has to be strongly considered as having the best hands for a C man in NHL history.He was a physically imposing player, with a smooth,elegant stride, and he could hit,check, and win faceoffs with the best in the league.He is probably the best captain in NHL history, and is respected more than any other living former player.He was the best stickhandler of his era, and would be as good as any today, and he led the Habs to a Cup in 1971 at age 40.Check the stats and note his fantastic production that post season.He had to be in the running for a Conn Smythe.

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06-15-2006, 06:47 PM
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Everyone I meet or appears on TV who knows Béliveau always speaks of him with the highest regard and respect. I can't help smiling whenever I see his face on the screen.

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06-15-2006, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by V-2 Schneider
Gros Bill has to be strongly considered as having the best hands for a C man in NHL history.He was a physically imposing player, with a smooth,elegant stride, and he could hit,check, and win faceoffs with the best in the league.He is probably the best captain in NHL history, and is respected more than any other living former player.He was the best stickhandler of his era, and would be as good as any today, and he led the Habs to a Cup in 1971 at age 40.Check the stats and note his fantastic production that post season.He had to be in the running for a Conn Smythe.
He played with a flat bladed wooden stick and he has been said to score on 40-foot backhanders.

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06-15-2006, 07:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricolore#20
Never saw him play, but from what I've heard, he was sheer brilliance and pure class. When opponents speak extremely highly of a player, it usually means that the player is a class of his own. Current players of that nature include Yzerman or Sakic, guys who people have nary a bad thing to say about.

From what I can gather (and of course I may be wrong, since I had never seen any of the Canadiens greats play), I think Beliveau is one of the reasons why Canadiens fans clamour for Vincent Lecavalier, because of certain similarities. The Rocket was more rugged than Lecavalier, while Lafleur was probably much softer than Vinny. To me, Lecavalier is a player who captures Beliveau's grace, elegance and style of play the best (of course, he may not duplicate it entirely ).
Lafleur wasn't soft at all. He played on a line with two other small guys and still went into the corners and to the net. He played in an era where fighting and brawls were openly accepted. Robinson's presence on the ice helped him for awhile, but Robinson stopped playing aggressively after the Cup run, he wasn't the same player. Lafleur should have had bigger linemates to help him out (sound familiar) later in his career, but they didn't get him any help. He was never the same after Pat Boutette took out his knee in the 1980 playoffs. If he had had a bigger linemate to help him out, might never have happened.

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06-15-2006, 07:14 PM
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I live in Victoria, BC...and one day while I was waiting for the ferry so I could head to Vancouver I was chatting with an older guy (must have been in his 50's early 60's). Anyways, he grew up in Montreal and was telling me all these different Canadien stories.

He used to play pond hockey with some friends and they would use one of the buddies houses to change or warmup if it was really cold out. His friends parents ended up selling the house and moving, so him and his friends had no place to change nearby. He said one day they were out on the pond and some guy in a overcoat was watching them play and when they were done he come up to them, it was Jean Beliveau. He was the one that bought the house that they used to change in, and offered them to use it again whenever they played. Imagine being a kid and having one of your hockey idols welcome you and your friends into his home. Wow.

He said he went back by the area many years later and saw Mr. Beliveau in the neighbourhood and he still remembered his name.

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06-15-2006, 07:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricolore#20
Never saw him play, but from what I've heard, he was sheer brilliance and pure class. When opponents speak extremely highly of a player, it usually means that the player is a class of his own. Current players of that nature include Yzerman or Sakic, guys who people have nary a bad thing to say about.

From what I can gather (and of course I may be wrong, since I had never seen any of the Canadiens greats play), I think Beliveau is one of the reasons why Canadiens fans clamour for Vincent Lecavalier, because of certain similarities. The Rocket was more rugged than Lecavalier, while Lafleur was probably much softer than Vinny. To me, Lecavalier is a player who captures Beliveau's grace, elegance and style of play the best (of course, he may not duplicate it entirely ).

That's exact ; and that's why not only i would like Lecavalier to play here , but because their size and style are very similar , it would be great to see Lecavalier with the number 4 jersey .

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06-15-2006, 07:39 PM
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From what I've read of Jean, when he came up he scored in bunches and the other teams started attacking him. I think it was the Rocket who told him that he had to stand up for himself. So he did. I think it was for a year or two, but his penalty numbers skyrocketed and he played a very mean game and got into fights.

Nobody bothered him after that.

In the 1960s, the fans became restless because after the five straight Cups, there was a five year drought where many of the team's stars were traded away for various reasons. Beliveau fought through many injuries in the 60s and the fans would sometimes get on his back. The fans were so used to winning that they even criticized the WAY they won in the late 60s (with a more defensive style).

I've watched a few games on tape that Jean played in, and he's by far the largest man on the ice in those games. I have the Cup clincher in the 1967 finals against Toronto. Not a good game if you are a Habs fan, but in that game, they cut to ice level cameras during the action, the earliest I've seen that done, and his 6-3 frame stands out in a big way, kind of like Chara stands out today. He was a VERY big man for his day.

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06-15-2006, 07:41 PM
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If you never seen him play...


http://www.legendsofhockey.net/html/...ohip197201.htm

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06-15-2006, 08:57 PM
  #24
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thx u!! was really nice to watch!

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06-15-2006, 10:48 PM
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He is really one of the most respected people in all of hockey by players, nhl people and fans alike, everyone loves him and the class that he exudes. These are the types of threads i love to read as a Habs fan.

This reminded me of something that occured this past year. Many of my friends are from Calgary and while home on winter break, 2 of them attended a Flames game. I don't remember who they were playing but that is irrelevant. Beliveau was in attendance and was wearing a Flames jersey, and they interviewed him for no reason on the jumbotron. They asked, why are you in town and he said he was visiting a friend who lives there. To get to the point at the end of this short interview, he was given a standing ovation by Calgary fans for quite a lengthy time. From what I was told this was a great moment and he isn't even a Flame.

That was just to show that it isn't just us who respect him so much.

I would say that even though I am only 22 years old, whenever I see Dick Irvin or Jean Beliveau i feel such a rush of emotion and I can't help but smile. They are truly the greats.

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