Hard for me to believe it but Bobby Orr has turned 60. One of hockey's biggest legends. He is a Canadian cultural icon. Legend has it that the Maple Leafs screwed up signing the local phenom. Stephen Brunt of the Globe has done an excellent story on Orr.
One of my favourite Orr memories was the famous Quinn hit. In 1969, Pat Quinn was a slow hulking defenseman for the Maple Leafs who caught Orr with his head down and knocked him out. Quinn was assessed a questionable elbow penalty - mostly for having the gall to knockout a hockey God in BOSTON! The Boston fans went crazy. Quinn had to be escorted from the penalty box because some of the fans began hitting him. Garbage rained down in Quinn's direction. Finally police were brought in to safely escort Quinn to the dressing room.
Hard to say who the greatest NHL player of all time. The game has evolved so much that comparisons don't work. But I never saw a player dominate in the way that Bobby Orr did in his era. When he played he was the fastest skater, the best stickhandler, and the most accurate shot. He was so good he made stars on other teams look ordinary. He was the only defenseman to win a scoring championship.For those who never got to see him play, look at this highlight reel of Bobby Orr rushing the puck.