The Hockey History Podcast

Bill and Riley debate which NHL players belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame and which don't. Episodes every few weeks.

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Episode 13: Defensive Defencemen


Ever since the position of defenseman was invented, there have been those more talented at scoring and those less talented at scoring. The Hall of Fame has recognized a number of defenders who played during the Original Six Era who didn't score very much but contributed defensively to their teams' success. However, since the expansion of the NHL and Bobby Orr's emergence, only one NHL defenseman to score under .35 PPG per game (adjusted for era) has been enshrined in the Hall of Fame, Rod Langway. This leads to three possible situations:

Rod Langway was the best defensive defenseman since expansion, significantly better than any other, and he deserves to be in the Hall of Fame while no other player with a similar skill set deserves the honour.


There are other players of Rod Langway's ability who have been forgotten or overlooked because they didn't get the awards votes (Norris and Hart) that Langway got, and they deserve to be in.


Rod Langway's awards votes are a historical curiosity that won't happen again and he didn't necessarily deserve them, nor do other players who fail to contribute offensively, and no defensive defensemen should be inducted into the Hall of Fame going forward.

How do we sort out this problem?

Categories | Very Special Episode


Filetype: MP3 - Size: 65.78MB - Duration: 1:11:51 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)

The Back Check is a hockey history podcast where Bill and Riley discuss which NHL players belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Detailed show notes can be found at our blog.

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Bill Enos

Bill Enos 

 Bill grew up on the south shore of Montreal, but was born on the left coast. He has been a die-hard Canucks fan since 1989 (except those two Messier years, which he spent living in a bunker fearing the sun).  Bill has long been an avid baseball, hockey and football fan, and probably should write a book about one of them. Joining the podcast with Riley is a chance for Bill to flex his vast knowledge of hockey history without becoming a pub quiz barfly. Bill has promised to remove his green and blue coloured glasses for the podcast, but can't make any promises. 


Riley Haas

Riley Haas

Riley grew up watching baseball but fell in love with the Maple Leafs during the 1993 playoff run. He had his heart broken by Gretzky and didn't watch hockey again for 5 years. Starting with the 1999 Leafs playoff run Riley immersed himself in hockey again, becoming so obsessive that he eventually wrote a book about Maple Leafs mismanagement. He dates his falling out of love with the Maple Leafs from the David Clarkson contract. He is now much more of a basketball fan but still loves the history of hockey.

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