Last week we looked at the Montreal Canadiens' Big Three defenseman from the 1970s - Serge Savard, Larry Robinson and Guy Lapointe.
While we discussed how no other team in history may have been so blessed to have three defensemen as greats as the 1970s Habs, my follow up question today is could all three make a 1970s All Decade team?
Assuming a traditional roster of 18 skaters and 2 goalies, that means only 6 or maybe 7 spots would be open to defensemen. But there are 8 serious candidates.
- Bobby Orr - D'uh
- Brad Park - Generally considered to be the best of his era not named Orr.
- Denis Potvin - the dominant defenseman of the second half of the decade, won three Norris trophies.
- Borje Salming - Greatly influential player proved Europeans could play in National Hockey League
- J.C. Tremblay - Top defenseman in WHA
- Larry Robinson - Won 2 Norris trophies, only dman not named Orr or Potvin to do so in 1970s.
- Serge Savard - The straw that stirred the drink in Montreal
- Guy Lapointe - wondrous offensive defenseman.
As much as it would be a shame to cut any two of that group of three, I'd have to give the edge to Salming. Lapointe and Tremblay were wonderful offensive defensemen, but Salming's legacy as the NHL's European pioneer is just too great. He has to be included.
The 1970s All Decade Team: Defense includes:
Bobby Orr - Brad Park
Borje Salming - Denis Potvin
Larry Robinson - Serge Savard
Who do you think should be on the 1970s All Decade Team? Contact me via email or on Twitter @HockeyLegends.
Tune in tomorrow when we look at the 1970s All Decade Team: Goaltenders.