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

Hockey my favorite game or it was

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Old
04-29-2011, 06:07 PM
  #1
Ben1938
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Hockey my favorite game or it was

My favorite game or is was

I used to love this game when there were six teams and a few years after that. It was fast and skillful.

Expansion however changed all that. In order to satisfy the American thirst for violence in the coliseum, the size and weight of the individual hockey player slowly increased from probably an average of one hundred and seventy five pound to over two hundred. This applies particularly in the south where hockey had never been seen

Itís no wonder that soccer has never been and probably will never be a major sport in the US. There is not enough violence just skill and speed.

No one can tell me, that players over two hundred pounds can be as fast as one hundred and seventy five pound athletes. During the Vancouver Olympics last year I found a web site listing all the speed skaters and their stats. They were anywhere from one hundred and sixty to one hundred and eighty pounds. If the over two hundred pound athletes could compete in that sport they would be there.

The sad thing about this is that weíll never see players such as Bobby Orr or Wayne Gretzky again; that kind of amazing talent does not come in the large economy size.

What is even sadder is the talent pool. I donít know what the percentage of the population is over two hundred at a fit eighteen. Letís say 10 percent. That leaves maybe fifty percent at around one hundred and seventy five pounds. How many Orrís and Gretzkyís are being ignored.

It is a great game with thousands of young players dreaming of playing in the NHL; For most of them getting there will remain just a dream; few will get there unless their genetic makeup leaves them weighing at least two hundred at eighteen.

There are of course players in the NHL weighing less then two hundred probably goal tenders but the average is way over two hundred pounds.

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04-29-2011, 06:58 PM
  #2
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Do you seriously not understand why size is important in a full contact sport?

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04-29-2011, 07:15 PM
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As North America evolved culturally and economically, the NHL had to evolve in order to stay relevant as both a professional sport and a financial entity. While I am hardly one of those fans who pretend like hockey did not exist prior to the last lockout, the truth is that the NHL got bigger because North America got bigger. According to a 1955 study, the average height and weight of a Canadian male was 5'7 and 154 pounds. Whereas in 2005, the average Canadian male was 5'7.5 and 182 pounds. Now, keep in mind we are talking about the "average" male. Professional athletes are not average males, in terms of body type. The average height and weight of a male professional athlete, in any of the four major sports, is going to be much, much higher than that of a typical North American male.

Look, I understand your general point, but the size of the NHL has only changed because the size of human beings has changed. If anything, there is more of an opportunity for smaller players in today's NHL then there was in the past. There is no longer a bias against smaller players. If you are good enough to play in the NHL, you will play in the NHL, no matter whether you are 5'9, 180 or 6'4, 240. You have to realize that size does play a major role in this game and that certain roles necessitate larger bodies. Smaller players need to be scoring forwards because they simply do not profile anything else. That is not the NHL's fault, nor the players' fault. This is a full-contact sport that involves running into each other at full speed. In general, size matters.


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04-30-2011, 07:00 AM
  #4
IrishPaulie
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You're entire argument was lost when you chose to site Bobby Orr who was listed as 6'0/5'11 195-200lbs while with the B's. Other notable players for the Bruins on that 72 Cup winning squad were Bucyk (6'0 215) Esposito (6'1 205) matter of fact they had 8 200+ lbs players on that squad.

Less than a third of the current NHL is over 200lbs and that's not even including all those skinny goalies for you.

Bottomline and I tell my father this all the time, there is no use comparing two separate eras of any sport. The sport, the training techniques, the equipment, the people, the education, the coaching have all changed to the point that the league had to evolve with them.

The average height in basketball has changed over the years. The average size of football players has changed. The size and speed of soccer players. The speed of baseball and the parks. I could go through every sport and site the changes that have led up to the sport being where it is today and why those changes were necessary or came about.

As with anything in life, you evolve, or you die.

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04-30-2011, 03:01 PM
  #5
overpass
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Originally Posted by IrishPaulie View Post
You're entire argument was lost when you chose to site Bobby Orr who was listed as 6'0/5'11 195-200lbs while with the B's. Other notable players for the Bruins on that 72 Cup winning squad were Bucyk (6'0 215) Esposito (6'1 205) matter of fact they had 8 200+ lbs players on that squad.

Less than a third of the current NHL is over 200lbs and that's not even including all those skinny goalies for you.

Bottomline and I tell my father this all the time, there is no use comparing two separate eras of any sport. The sport, the training techniques, the equipment, the people, the education, the coaching have all changed to the point that the league had to evolve with them.

The average height in basketball has changed over the years. The average size of football players has changed. The size and speed of soccer players. The speed of baseball and the parks. I could go through every sport and site the changes that have led up to the sport being where it is today and why those changes were necessary or came about.

As with anything in life, you evolve, or you die.
Some degree of change may be inevitable. But obviously not all changes are good or desirable. Nothing wrong with a preference for a different style of play.

Its also possible that players would be smaller today if the league had made different choices. For example, the expanded use of "finishing the check" has allowed size and speed to flourish at the expense of skill and agility.

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04-30-2011, 03:16 PM
  #6
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Why did you write "10" but spell out every other number?

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04-30-2011, 03:20 PM
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The original post has it all...junk science, "back in my day", and a healthy dose of anti-American sentiment. That's in addition to having absolutely no clue what physical fitness is, any working knowledge of the human body, or anything resembling a rational thought.

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04-30-2011, 04:14 PM
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Yeah the O6 era was great if you were a fan of the Leafs or Habs. As they always had a good chance of winning it all. But the other teams? Good luck if the way the league was corrupt didn't hold you back.

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05-01-2011, 01:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Roomtemperature View Post
Yeah the O6 era was great if you were a fan of the Leafs or Habs. As they always had a good chance of winning it all. But the other teams? Good luck if the way the league was corrupt didn't hold you back.
I suppose that's why the Detroit Red Wings were the dominant force for more than half the 1950s--seven consecutive league titles, a record, plus one more in 1957 after the Canadiens had won it in 1956, in an era in which winning the league race was much more valued than it is today, and four Stanley Cups. The Leafs were also-rans throughout most of the 1950s, and the Canadiens were usually outclassed runners-up in both league and Cup for the first six years of the 1950s with the exception of 1953, when the Bruins upset the Wings in the semifinals and then lost to the Canadiens in the finals.

The Black Hawks, as they were then, had the talent to win several league titles and Cups in the 1960s, and it remains mystifying to me and I suspect their supporters that they did not win more. Certainly the league and Cup were closely contested during most of the 1960s.


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05-01-2011, 01:18 AM
  #10
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Originally Posted by overpass View Post
Some degree of change may be inevitable. But obviously not all changes are good or desirable. Nothing wrong with a preference for a different style of play.

Its also possible that players would be smaller today if the league had made different choices. For example, the expanded use of "finishing the check" has allowed size and speed to flourish at the expense of skill and agility.
Yes, and I, too, prefer the ice hockey I watched in the 1950s, 1960s and even the 1970s to that of today. By and large, the NHL has put a premium on size and strength and the physical game over skill and speed. Players were inevitably going to become larger as the average heighth and weight of the population increased. But the effects of the increase in size of the players could have been minimized had the NHL seized the opportunity, now gone, to switch to international size rinks. Larger rinks would allow for more emphasis on skill and speed.

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05-01-2011, 01:32 PM
  #11
Roomtemperature
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Originally Posted by Peter9 View Post
I suppose that's why the Detroit Red Wings were the dominant force for more than half the 1950s--seven consecutive league titles, a record, plus one more in 1957 after the Canadiens had won it in 1956, in an era in which winning the league race was much more valued than it is today, and four Stanley Cups. The Leafs were also-rans throughout most of the 1950s, and the Canadiens were usually outclassed runners-up in both league and Cup for the first six years of the 1950s with the exception of 1953, when the Bruins upset the Wings in the semifinals and then lost to the Canadiens in the finals.

The Black Hawks, as they were then, had the talent to win several league titles and Cups in the 1960s, and it remains mystifying to me and I suspect their supporters that they did not win more. Certainly the league and Cup were closely contested during most of the 1960s.


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The league tolerated monopolistic practices by the owners. At one point, for instance, Red Wings owner James E. Norris effectively owned the Black Hawks as well, and was also the largest stockholder in the Rangers. He also had significant influence over the Bruins by way of mortgages extended to the team to help keep it afloat during the Depression. This led some critics to joke that NHL stood for "Norris House League.
Thanks Wikipedia. and the source from SI http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vau...0137/index.htm

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05-01-2011, 05:51 PM
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Wow. Figure that Norris was the driving force behind the NHL's plan to establish a farm league in Europe in the first half of the 70s. The London Lions (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_Lions) were his team. I guess the European Pro League would've been a "Norris House League" as well... transatlantic monopoly!

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05-01-2011, 05:55 PM
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Kane One
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How is it America's fault for hockey turning into a "violent" sport?

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In order to satisfy the American thirst for violence in the coliseum

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05-01-2011, 06:52 PM
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Found this in George Plimpton's book "Open Net". He was tallking to Don Cherry at the time.

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Originally Posted by George Plimpton
"Actually," Cherry said, "it's not anywhere as violent as it once was. It was twice as violent when the NHL only had six teams. Television came in, and the fights had to be cleaned up some. In the old days the players used their sticks much more in fights."
I'm interested to see an entire history of stick-swinging incidents; the most prominent of the last 25 years have been Marty McSorley on Donald Brashear, Alex Perezhogin on Garrett Stafford (which was the AHL anyway), and Dave Brown on Tomas Sandstrom. Other ones include Tony Granato on Neil Wilkinson, Jesse Boulerice on Andrew Long (OHL), and Dino Ciccarelli on Luke Richardson. All received extremely stiff punishments, which usually is an indicator that an act is extremely egregious or causes damage severe enough to warrant a lengthy suspension for an act that's normally not regarded as being particularly serious.

Cherry is right in that stick-swinging incidents were much more commonplace and regarded as much less severe than they were post-expansion. Maybe Ted Green and Wayne Maki (September 1969) was the breaking point where the league said that enough was enough...in which case, that's post-expansion and therefore would not mesh with the original post one bit.

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05-01-2011, 09:51 PM
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I'm interested to see an entire history of stick-swinging incidents. Cherry is right in that stick-swinging incidents were much more commonplace and regarded as much less severe than they were post-expansion. Maybe Ted Green and Wayne Maki (September 1969) was the breaking point where the league said that enough was enough...in which case, that's post-expansion and therefore would not mesh with the original post one bit.
I have no recollection of stick swinging incidents pre 69 with the exception Stan Makita early in his career using his stick like a fork on people (and ya, Im more than old enough to remember) and I think Cherry may have been referring to the early 20th century game actually. In 1904 alone, 4 players died from injuries sustained while playing the game; several players circa 1900-1920 charged with Manslaughter as a result, though none (to the best of my knowledge) convicted. Illegal stickwork the primary cause. In Wiki you'll find a page on hockey violence, references to 2 reports commissioned in 74 (Ontario) and I believe 80's or 90's (BC) though I cant find them on-line, and of course they only deal with the matter at the amateur and junior levels. Between roughly 1917 & 1969 (Maki-Shack) I can find little in the way of egregious stick swinging incidents recorded on-line nor in anecdotal form. From 69-2011 however, their are more than just a few. Cherrys claim that stickwork was used more is true, to slow down, annoy, distract. But actual swinging & clubbing?. Maybe in the far reaches of the old ECHL or CHL, but not in the major junior ranks, the WHL, AHL, WHA & certainly not in the NHL.


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05-01-2011, 10:52 PM
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From Memory

John Ferguson on Gary Sabourin, St.Louis, not mutual. Gilles Tremblay/ Reg Fleming circa 1962, each was suspended for the next three Chicago/Montreal games, Bernie Geoffrion/Ron Murphy early 1950;s. Ken Reardon /Hal Gardner(Rangers, late 1940's) Laycoe / Maurice Richard 1955, Ted Lindsay/Bill Ezinicki late 1940's/early 1950's.Shack/Zeidel late 1960's.

From the 1970:s Paiement/Polonich, Forbes/Boucha.

Junior Jean-Guy Talbot on Scotty Bowman, not mutual, early 1950's.

There were a few others.

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05-01-2011, 11:53 PM
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The original post has it all...junk science, "back in my day", and a healthy dose of anti-American sentiment. That's in addition to having absolutely no clue what physical fitness is, any working knowledge of the human body, or anything resembling a rational thought.
Yeah, this pretty much sums it up.

"Back in my day" sentiment that points to an indeterminate glory day as a counterpoint to how terrible things are now? Check. I mean it is pretty funny that the OP talks about the original six, then goes on to cite Wayne Gretzky, who was in the NHL a full 30 years after the original six era had ended.

Pointless bashing of American culture. Check. Not even sure what the point of it is other than to blame bad American taste and poor lifestyle on the decline of the game, I suppose.

How many Wayne Gretzkys and Bobby Orrs are being ignored? I'd venture to say none, if a Nathan Gerbe is in the NHL and thriving.

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05-02-2011, 09:14 AM
  #18
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Originally Posted by Ben1938 View Post
In order to satisfy the American thirst for violence in the coliseum,


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No one can tell me, that players over two hundred pounds can be as fast as one hundred and seventy five pound athletes.


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The sad thing about this is that weíll never see players such as Bobby Orr or Wayne Gretzky again; that kind of amazing talent does not come in the large economy size.


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There are of course players in the NHL weighing less then two hundred probably goal tenders

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05-07-2011, 07:37 PM
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Peter9
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Thanks Wikipedia. and the source from SI http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vau...0137/index.htm
Roomtemperature, I fail to see what the James Norris monopolistic efforts have to do with my rebuttal to your claim that the Original Six era was good if you were a fan of the Canadiens or Leafs, who always had a chance of winning it all, but not good for the fans of other clubs, who apparently, in your view, had to have good luck to achieve anything.

The Red Wings dominated the first half of the 1950s, with the Canadiens usually runners-up. The Leafs were also-rans throughout the 1950s, although they did manage to reach the Stanley Cup finals in 1959. The Bruins were competitive until all but the last season of the 1950s, playing in three Stanley Cup finals in 1953, 1957 and 1958. Although losing all three to the Canadiens, they were nothing like pushovers and played some wonderful hockey.

The Black Hawks won the Stanley Cup in 1961, and had the talent--and were expected--to dominate a large part of the 1960s. They were losing Stanley Cup finalists several times in the 1960s and won the league title in the Original Six's last season, 1967. The Red Wings took the league title in 1965 and also reached the Stanley Cup finals in the 1960s.

Your quarrel is with the fact that the Canadiens and the Leafs each assembled two dynasty teams in the Original Six era, the Canadiens in the 1950s and 1960s and the Leafs in the 1940s and 1960s.

Well the league has now achieved relative parity through the exercise of monopolistic practices limiting the ability of clubs to assemble teams of dynasty quality. But the recent era has not been at all good to most of the Original Six teams. The Leafs haven't won the Cup since 1967, the Canadiens haven't won since 1993 and only twice since 1979, the Bruins haven't won since 1972, the Black Hawks have won once since 1961, the Rangers have won once since 1941. Only the Wings have had some success with, what is it, four Cups since 1997 (the first of those being the Wings' first since 1955), matching the four they won in the first half of the 1950s. So just how is it better for the fans of these clubs today than it was in the Original Six era? The answer is no better and worse for some.


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05-07-2011, 07:50 PM
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Yeah, this pretty much sums it up.

"Back in my day" sentiment that points to an indeterminate glory day as a counterpoint to how terrible things are now? Check. I mean it is pretty funny that the OP talks about the original six, then goes on to cite Wayne Gretzky, who was in the NHL a full 30 years after the original six era had ended.

Pointless bashing of American culture. Check. Not even sure what the point of it is other than to blame bad American taste and poor lifestyle on the decline of the game, I suppose.

How many Wayne Gretzkys and Bobby Orrs are being ignored? I'd venture to say none, if a Nathan Gerbe is in the NHL and thriving.
OP also forgot the small stars from Pittsburgh in Mario and Jagr not to mention Malkin today , in terms of skill.

Sounds like a Bruce Kidd clone in his 70's to me with the lack of logic in the arguments.

Original 6 games were not any faster or more skillfull than any other era afterward s despite the attempts of glorification that continue to persist.

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05-30-2011, 12:15 PM
  #21
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In order to satisfy the American thirst for violence in the coliseum
Speaking as a Canadian hockey historian who is unabashedly pro-Canadian when it comes to hockey, the idea that the game was nice and clean before the Americans fouled it up is just complete and utter nonsense. There were multitudes of outrageously violent players throughout the history of the game, even when it was the exclusive province of Canadian players. Ever hear of Sprague Cleghorn? Newsy Lalonde? Baldy Spittal? They're just the tip of the iceberg.

This is a "back in my day" argument, which I can tell you from years of research was prevalent even as early as the 1910s, when retired players would criticize current ones as being lazy or soft or lacking the supreme talent that each and every player had back in that player's day.

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05-30-2011, 02:57 PM
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How is it America's fault for hockey turning into a "violent" sport?
If my memory is correct, Americans have generally denounced violence in hockey and sport. Its Canadians that have the love for fighting in hockey. Look at the top three sports in the U.S. Baseball - fighting is very rare. Football - fighting is even rarer and strongly denounced. Basketball - fighting appears to have increased over the last few years, but its not a staple of the game. Its [possible that the Americans who have watched the Bruins, Rangers and Hawks over the years have grown accustomed to violence in hockey, but until Gretzky arrived in the U.S. hockey was not universally watched by a large U.S. audience.

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05-30-2011, 03:38 PM
  #23
Iain Fyffe
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Exactly.

Is fighting tolerated in NCAA hockey?

Is fighting tolerated in European or international hockey?

Is fighting tolerated in Canadian major junior hockey?

The answers to those questions are a big clue.

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05-30-2011, 03:40 PM
  #24
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If my memory is correct, Americans have generally denounced violence in hockey and sport. Its Canadians that have the love for fighting in hockey. Look at the top three sports in the U.S. Baseball - fighting is very rare. Football - fighting is even rarer and strongly denounced. Basketball - fighting appears to have increased over the last few years, but its not a staple of the game. Its [possible that the Americans who have watched the Bruins, Rangers and Hawks over the years have grown accustomed to violence in hockey, but until Gretzky arrived in the U.S. hockey was not universally watched by a large U.S. audience.
Football is a very violent game. Fighting in football with the helmets face masks and pads would just be stupid and a waste of time thus they don't allow it. Same reason they don't allow players to take off their helmet to trash talk it wasted time.

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05-30-2011, 04:08 PM
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Football is a very violent game. Fighting in football with the helmets face masks and pads would just be stupid and a waste of time thus they don't allow it.
And yet one of the rationales for keeping fighting in hockey is that because it's a hard-hitting, full-contact sport (like football), the players need to be able to blow off steam to keep them from doing really vicious stuff. You know, like the stuff you get in NCAA hockey.

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