Skip to main content

Hockey Heroes: Jean Guy Talbot

During his prime, defenseman Jean-Guy Talbot was an excellent outlet passer who provided physical play in his own zone. His career lasted 1,056 games with five different clubs but he was best known for winning an amazing seven Stanley Cups with the Montreal Canadiens.

Born in Cap de la Madeleine, Quebec, Talbot was a junior star with Trois-Rivieres and Shawinigan before playing senior with the Quebec Aces. After scoring 34 points for the club in 1954-55, the talented rearguard was placed on the QHL's first all-star team. He gained a regular job on the Montreal Canadiens' blue line in 1955-56, ultimately replacing the great Butch Bouchard. It was excellent timing, as Talbot enjoyed Stanley Cup success in each of his first five NHL seasons.

Talbot was an integral part of the Canadiens' transition game until 1966-67. Learning from Doug Harvey and Tom Johnson's influence, his consistent play at both ends of the ice was crucial when the Habs had to replace the likes of Rocket Richard, Harvey, and Bernie Geoffrion in the early 1960s. After scoring 47 points in 1961-62, Talbot was voted on to the NHL first all-star team. He also played a notably important role on Stanley Cup teams in 1965 and 1966.

When the Canadiens wanted to go with younger players like Serge Savard, he was left unprotected in the 1967 Expansion Draft. The Minnesota North Stars claimed him then flipped him to the Detroit Red Wings four games into the 1967-68 season. Before the end of the season Detroit then sent him to the St. Louis Blues. His puck handling and experience helped that expansion club reach the Stanley Cup finals in each of their first three seasons beginning in 1968. He would round out his career mentoring the raw rookies on the expansion Buffalo Sabres in 1970-71.

Following his playing days, Talbot became a coach. He coached the Denver Spurs to the WHL championship in 1972 then worked behind the St. Louis bench on an interim basis in 1972-73 and 1973-74. He also coached the New York Rangers in 1977-78 and was replaced after the club posted a disappointing 30-37-13 record. He would return to Quebec to work in the promotions department of Carling O'Keefe Breweries in Trois-Rivieres.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

100 Greatest Hockey Players Of All Time

What follows is a listing of the 100 greatest hockey players of all time, in my opinion. As discussed earlier, the definition of greatness is a very personalized endeavor and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
While there is no way of ever truly ranking the top 100 definitively, it is important for the creators of such lists to be open and transparent of how the came to their conclusions. That accountability allows the reader to better understand the process. 

Although admittedly I'm using a completely unscientific formula, I weigh career achievements (era statistics, awards, championships) and legacy (impact on and off ice, peak dominance) equally high. I rank player ability as the third most important ingredient, as first and foremost as a tie breaker. Hence, I'm not necessarily looking for the better player, as in text book definitions of what a hockey player should be, but for players with the greatest careers and greatest legacies. Therefore the best player is not n…

Top Ten Junior Players Of All Time

Let's take a look at the Top Ten junior players of all time. For the purposes of this list we will at players in the WHL, OHL and QMJHL only.

10. Pat Lafontaine, Verdun, QMJHL Rookie-record 104 goals, 234 points in 1982-83; major junior player of the year.

9. Denis Potvin, Ottawa, OHL 254 games, 95 goals, 234 assists, 329 points. Broke Bobby Orr's junior records.

8. John Tavares, Oshawa, OHL 215 goals, 433 points in 247 games; most goals in OHL history; eligibility rules changed to admit him at 15; 2006 major junior rookie of the year, 2007 major junior player of the year; two world juniors, named 2009 all-star, top forward and MVP.

7. Sidney Crosby, Rimouski, QMJHL 120 goals, 303 points in 121 games; two-time major junior player of the year; silver and gold with Canada at two world juniors.

6. Eric Lindros, Oshawa, OHL 97 goals, 216 points in 95 games; one Memorial Cup victory; three world junior tournaments; major junior player of the year in 1991.

5. Mike Bossy, Laval, Q…

Greatest Hockey Legends: M