Is Frank Mahovlich one of the Greatest Left Wings of All Tim

Frank Mahovlich was considered the second best LW of the 1960s. (The first is arguably the Greatest of All Time.) But outside of Leafs fans, how well is he remembered?

He was likely more dominant in certain areas than you think but, in part because he never scored more than 49 goals or 96 points, and had some poor playoffs, it seems like he’s not as highly regarded now as he was in his prime. Also, like most LWs, his numbers wouldn’t look as good if he was a centre or RW.

Mahovlich obviously belongs in the Hockey Hall of Fame (see his resume below) but, in this episode, we wonder where he ranks among the greatest Left Wings of all time.

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Does Johnny Bucyk belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Bucyk retired as one of the Top 5 scorers in NHL history. And he set the single season record for a Left Winger.

But does his career look as good as it does because of his incredible longevity? Because he was never the best player on the Bruins when they were good.

Listen to us discuss John Bucyk’s Hockey Hall of Fame case here:

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Does Allan Stanley Belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Allan Stanley played a really long time, won a bunch of Stanley Cups and was briefly considered one of the best D in the NHL.

But his name doesn’t come up very often in discussions of great D of the past.

So, does Allan Stanley belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame? Has he been unjustly forgotten?

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Does JC Tremblay Belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

JC Tremblay won 5 Stanley Cups and an Avco. His Norris Trophy finishes are 2,3, 4,5,5. He won the Murphy (the WHA equivalent of the Norris) twice.

But he is not in the Hockey Hall of Fame.

In this episode, we wonder why. Listen here:

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Does Norm Ullman Belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Ralrton-Purina Company, maker of Chex cereals, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Norm Ullman was one of the league’s all time leading scorers when he left the NHL.

But two of the players above him on that list were his teammates. And he was a second line player for a substantial section of his career. Also, he never won a Cup.

So, does Norm Ullman belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

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Does Rod Gilbert belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Rod Gilbert is certainly someone deserving of the title “Mr. Ranger.” Along with Brian Leetch and Henrik Lundqvist, he has a claim to the title of Greatest New York Ranger of All Time (certainly if length of career with the franchise is taken into account).

But he was never one of the best players in the league during the regular season and his playoff numbers are not great.

So the question is, is his importance to the Rangers franchise and his compelling story of overcoming injury enough to put him in the Hall?

Listen to us talk about Rod Gilbert’s Hall of Fame case here:

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Does Yvan Cournoyer Belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Cournoyer didn’t have the most dominant regular season career and it’s likely that, had he not played for the Habs, he wouldn’t be in the Hall of Fame with his regular season numbers.

But then, there are his playoff numbers. Safe to say, anyone who leads an entire era in playoff goals and sets a single season record in playoff goals is going into the Hall of Fame.

Listen to us talk about The Roadrunner here:

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Is Bobby Hull the Greatest Left Wing of All Time?

Many 21st century hockey fans likely think the answer to the question “Who is the Greatest Left Winger of All Time?” has an easy answer, Alex Ovechkin.

But it’s possible we don’t remember how dominant Bobby Hull truly was. Hull won 2 Hart trophies and 3 Art Ross trophies. But he was a Hart finalist for most of a decade. Additionally, he was, by most standards, the best offensive player of his era, both in the regular season and, crucially, in the playoffs.

And then he went to another league and dominated it in his late 30s. (It’s possible his departure to the WHA colours how we think of his career.)

So, is Bobby Hull the Greatest LW of All Time? Listen here:

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Is Stan Mikita a Top 5 Centre All Time?

If you didn’t see him play, it’s possible Stan Mikita’s resume is better than you think it should be. In addition to winning multiple Hart trophies, Art Ross trophies and the Stanley Cup, he’s likely the 2nd best centre of the ’60s and among the best centres of the ’70s.

So it’s clear Stan Mikita belongs in the Hockey Hall of Fame. The question is, where does Stan Mikita rank among centres all time?

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Is Phil Esposito one of the Greatest Centres of All Time?

Why is it that we (our generation anyway) have trouble thinking of Esposito as one of the greatest hockey players of all time? Is it because he was on the same team as Bobby Orr, whose legend has endured far better? Is it because of Esposito’s extraordinarily unathletic physique? Is it because everything he did has since been done multiple times by multiple players so those records feel less important?

We have no idea, but Espo was the most dominant offensive player between Howe and Gretzky. (We read somewhere that Lafleur was the most dominant offensive player between Howe and Gretzky, but we don’t see evidence to back that up.)

Sure, Espo benefited from playing more games per season in the newly expanded league (someone was going to set records) and, yes, he benefited from playing with the Greatest of All Time, but lesser players wouldn’t have excelled the way he did, over such a long period of time.

Listen to us talk about Esposito here:

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