Believe it or not, Bobby Orr turns 68 years old today.
That is almost unbelievable! But no matter how old the kid of Parry Sound, Ontario gets, he will forever be one of only a very few players to achieve the greatest accolade of all - hockey eternity.
"He's the perfect hockey player."
Those are the words of Boston coach/GM Harry Sinden, who had the best look at Orr on a nightly basis and insists Orr is the best player ever because he blended extraordinary talent and a brand of toughness that no one else has ever possessed.
"(Gordie) Howe could do everything, but not at top speed. (Bobby) Hull went at top speed but couldn't do everything. The physical aspect is absent from (Wayne) Gretzky's game. Orr would do everything, and do it at top speed."
To make matters even more interesting, Orr was the sport's most dominant player, arguably its perfect player, and he did from the blue line. By doing so Orr revolutionized the game of hockey. His slick passing and playmaking and his end to end rushes were unheard of by a defenseman. Only the very very best forwards would try a solo effort. Orr did it seemingly effortlessly, and so convincingly, therefore forever changing the hockey landscape.
Perhaps the great writer Jack Falla sums it up best:
“Orr had broken scoring records by such huge margins and played with such creativity and abandon as to alter a half century of tactical hockey orthodoxy about the proper role of a defenseman.”
Read the full Bobby Orr biography and stay tuned to GreatestHockeyLegends.com for more Bobby Orr features throughout the day.