Novy, Martinec and Hlinka - Czechoslovak league/international scoring

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by VMBM, Mar 9, 2011.

  1. VMBM

    VMBM Crawfish Fiesta

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    This thread was really inspired by the 2011 ATD Draft, after some discussions and 'friendly debates' that have taken place there. In the opinion of some, or even many, Milan Novy as well as Ivan Hlinka are being ranked too low compared to Vladimir Martinec (and to Vaclav Nedomansky and the Soviet stars). I agree on that, no problem. Some even feel that Novy, for example, should be rated higher than Martinec. That I don't agree with, but if based on stats, it's still a legitimate argument, I think.

    Now, Vladimir Martinec, Ivan Hlinka and Milan Novy were born in 1949, 1950 and 1951, respectively. Not maybe quite the Mikhailov, Petrov and Kharlamov of Czechoslovak hockey, as they weren't even regular linemates, but in many ways they were the faces of the Czech offense in the 1970s. Sure, Nedomansky and Jiri Holik were there too, but those two weren't really their contemporaries, having been born a few years earlier.

    I have put together the key stats from Martinec's, Hlinka's and Novy's Czechoslovak league and international careers. Most of them can be found anywhere, and they are what they are - I have no interest in trying to change them. Still, this gave me the opportunity to put together their assist stats for the Czechoslovak league and the GP numbers for the major international tournaments. Special 'thank you' goes to poster Boy Wonder who provided me with the Czechoslovak league assist totals for all three players (after some confusion, I think we reached consensus :)) and info on the players' Top 10 placements prior to the 1969-70 season.

    The other main sources I've used:

    http://cs.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C4%8Ceskoslovensk%C3%A1_hokejov%C3%A1_liga
    http://hokej.snt.cz/index.html
    http://www.legendsofhockey.net/LegendsOfHockey/jsp/SearchPlayer.jsp?player=13865
    http://www.legendsofhockey.net/LegendsOfHockey/jsp/SearchPlayer.jsp?player=12958

    If you see something that you think is not quite right, let me know. Chances are that I won't even kill you!


    CZECHOSLOVAK LEAGUE

    Milan Novy (1968?-82; 1987-89)

    474 goals in 633 games

    Top 10 (points): 1st (1976), 1st (1977), 1st (1978), 1st (1981), 1st (1982), 2nd (1974), 2nd (1975), 2nd (1980), 3rd (1973), 3rd (1979), 9th (1972), 10th (1988)

    Ivan Hlinka (1967-81; 1986-87)

    347 goals in 544 games

    Top 10 (points): 1st (1975), 2nd (1978), 2nd (1972), 3rd (1974), 3rd (1976), 4th (1977), 7th (1973), 8th (1969), 8th (1971), 9th (1981)

    Vladimir Martinec (1967-81)

    343 goals in 539 games

    Top 10 (points): 1st (1973), 2nd (1976), 2nd (1979), 3rd (1972), 4th (1974), 5th (1968), 6th (1971), 6th (1975), 9th (1977), 10th (1970)

    Summary:

    NOTE: assists not recorded for Martinec in the 1968-69 season (he scored 23 goals [9th]). I don't know about Novy's assists before the 1970-71 season either.

    Both Novy and Hlinka made a comeback in the Czechoslovak league in the late 1980s, and Novy even had a couple of fairly productive seasons, but maybe that tells more about the quality of the league than about Novy's form back then? Anyway, those points they scored are included here.


    INTERNATIONAL

    Vladimir Martinec (1969-81)

    155 goals in 289 international games

    Ivan Hlinka (1969-81)

    132 goals in 256 international games

    Milan Novy (1974-82)

    120 goals in 211 international games

    Scoring in World Championships/Winter Olympics/Canada Cups

    NOTE: Goals/assists/points I got from here: http://www.goironpigs.com/?cat=40, but the GP totals I counted myself, pondering between different sources; the margin of error is, say, 1-3 games. But what I've learned is that those official statistics - like WC stats, for example - are never 100 % correct either; it just is so, when you are dealing with numbers from the 1960s/'70s.

    In the 1976 Winter Olympics, CSSR beat Poland initially 7-1, but due to Frantisek Pospisil "testing positive for doping", Czechoslovakia 'lost' the game 0-1, even though Poland didn't receive any points for it. This also means that the goals/assists scored by the Czechoslovak players in the game are not often credited, but I think that here they are part of the point totals; I have no problems with that, and it's only 1-3 points anyway.
    I'm not sure if they have counted the points from the first round games in the 1972 and 1976 Olympics, but I would think so.


    THOUGHTS

    Indeed, I can understand that Martinec's superiority over Novy and Hlinka is very hard to sell to a person who puts a high value on the Czechoslovak league numbers. BUT if the international stats are added, and if even that isn't enough, the awards (Golden HOCKEY Sticks, WC All-Star selections), then Martinec beats Novy and Hlinka clearly IMO. I guess it is just a case of what you prefer to emphasize. Personally, I care more about their international careers, because that's how I came to know these players - seeing them play for Czechoslovakia.

    So unless something drastic comes up, I will continue to rank them as so: Martinec, Hlinka, Novy. Hlinka over Novy might be hard to justify, but it's been like that 'forever' for me, and I feel that Hlinka was more of a key player on the national team. Of course, if it happened to be so that there are no real reasons for Novy's strangely weak reputation*, I might have to reconsider. The FACT remains, though, that he is criminally underrated.

    * it has been suggested that he was "easily intimidated/rattled" in international games. I would also add his fairly short national team career (7-8 years compared to 11-12 of Martinec and Hlinka)
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2011
  2. begbeee

    begbeee Registered User

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    Golden Stick:
    Martinec: 4x (1973, 1975, 1976, 1979) // 3rd
    Nový: 3x (1977, 1981, 1982) // 2nd, 3rd
    Hlinka:1x (1978) // 2nd

    As you have said - Nový is criminally underrated and I have said it for billion times. I am not going to participate on creating any ranking of these three guys, but we can definetly say that Nový is in the same tier and not on the bottom line.

    Even Igor Liba or Vladimír Ružička have better resume in Golden Stick (similar to Hart Trophy) than Hlinka - I dont know if that means something, but probably yes and smart guys from the forum will create a conclusion from this.
     
  3. VMBM

    VMBM Crawfish Fiesta

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    Golden HOCKEY Stick. Golden Stick without the 'hockey' in the middle was an annual award for the best player playing in Europe, I think - starting from the 1978-79 season?

    I hate to say this - since Martinec won it - but I think Hlinka might have been robbed in 1975. He really dominated the league in scoring, and Martinec was only 6th. It seems that international performances played some part in the voting, and Martinec was undoubtedly better in the 1975 WC, but was it really the reason??? I don't know.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2011
  4. begbeee

    begbeee Registered User

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    I am pretty sure it was/is called Golden Stick, doesnt matter if there is another Golden Stick as european award. Maybe you on this forum or in NA have started to call it Golden Hockey Stick but when you translate it into czech it is pretty ridiculous and weird because it sounds like Golden Hockey Hockey-stick.

    Voting in 1999 - Hockey player of the century in Czech republic:
    1. Hašek 472
    2. Jágr 357
    3. Zábrodský 240
    4. Martinec 235
    5. Hlinka 181
    6. Vl. Bubník 160
    7. Suchý 154
    8. Jiří Holík 136
    9. Maleček 121
    10. Nedomanský 98
    11. Holeček 97
    12. Modrý 93
    13. Růžička 71
    14. Pospíšil 68
    15. Jaroslav Holík 54
    16. J. Černý 41
    17. Nový 35
    18. Drobný 20
    19. Dopita 14
    20. M. Vlach 11
    21. Bacílek a Reichel 9
    23. Kobranov, Konopásek a Pitner 8
    26. Tikal a Pácalt 6
    28. Králík a Machač 5
    30. Mikoláš, Bubla a Pouzar 3
    33. Ručinský, Lála, Danda a Havel 2
    37. P. Svoboda, Nadrchal a Gut 1.

    http://hockeystats.webnode.cz/ankety/hokejista-stoleti/

    I dont understand why is Novy on 17th place. I am going to ask some czechs...
     
  5. Dreakmur

    Dreakmur Registered User

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    Novy played a boring style. He wasn't flashy, so he didn't attract the same fanfare.
     
  6. BM67

    BM67 Registered User

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    Czech Golden Hockey Stick Top 10 in Voting

    Martinec was ahead of both Hlinka and Novy in voting 6 of the 11 seasons. Martinec was playing in Germany in 82.
    Hlinka was ahead of Martinec twice, and Novy 4 times. Hlinka was playing in the NHL in 82.
    Novy was ahead of Martinec 5 times, and Hlinka 7 times, including 82.
     
  7. begbeee

    begbeee Registered User

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    Notes:
    Nový played NHL in 1983 seasons he finished 6th in team scoring with +1 (as rookie and oldest player on the team :laugh: ).

    Novy came back from retirement to became most productive player on the team (played on a line with 16 year old Jagr).

    Novy was ironman - didnt miss a game in 8 seasons (all-time record).

    He is all-time best scorer of the Czech republic until nowadays with 594 goals (league + national team). /Of course Jagrs 600+ NHL goals have more value./
     
  8. seventieslord

    seventieslord Student Of The Game

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    Why does it say they all have over 200 international games, and then their totals in the chart range from 85 to 120? Do the 200+ games include lesser, unimportant tournaments? I would stick the important stuff, like the chart underneath does.

    Golden Stick = best player in Europe
    Golden Hockey Stick = Czech MVP

    right?
     
  9. VMBM

    VMBM Crawfish Fiesta

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    Yes, there were LOTS of lesser games/tournaments besides the World Championships, Winter Olympics and Canada Cups; for example Izvestia tournament (sometimes called the 'mini World Championships') around every Christmas, Rude Pravo Cup, Sweden Cup etc. and numerous exhibition/pre-tournament games. Take a look at Team USSR's 'schedule' in the 1979-80 season, and maybe you get the picture: http://www.chidlovski.net/1954/54_season.asp?gseason=79-80

    Yup.
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2011
  10. VMBM

    VMBM Crawfish Fiesta

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    Nedomansky #10 and Holecek #11 are a joke too IMO. I don't usually believe in conspiracy theories, but...
     
  11. VMBM

    VMBM Crawfish Fiesta

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    A little note on the Golden Hockey Stick/Golden Stick thing:

    begbeee does have a point, since the "Golden Hockey Stick" is just the English translation of/the English term for "Zlatá hokejka", and the Golden Stick, well, I don't know what that is translated from. Both awards are/were known as "Kultainen maila" in Finland, I believe. The difference is just in the context. But it does seemed to have caused some confusion on the internet too. For instance, look at the quote from the bio on Jan Suchy (by Patrick Houda) from Joe Pelletier's 1972 Summit series site:

    full bio:http://www.1972summitseries.com/othersuchy.html

    Now, I'm pretty sure Suchy didn't win any "Best player in Europe" awards in 1969 and 1970 (as such award didn't yet exist then), but he is rather talking about the award given to the top player in Czechoslovakia that Suchy indeed won in 1969 and 1970.

    Whatever, since the awards seem to have a different name in English, and we are writing in English here, maybe we should use those 'correct' terms? Or maybe we are, er, smart enough to know the difference anyway, I don't know?
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2011
  12. begbeee

    begbeee Registered User

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    Thank you.

    Maybe there is some consensus about that in english, but I am not a native speaker and didnt know about it. Sorry. I simply translated it from Czech to English. But if you use the word "stick" for the item with which is hockey played, there is no other translation of the words "Zlatá hokejka" than Golden Stick. Golden Hockey Stick sounds in translation something like "Ice ice-rink" or "Swimming swimming-pool".

    I dont know where is this term from, but we should use correct terms. Doesnt matter if there is another one trophy of the same name. Srsly, something different with same name is not as unusual or uncommon in the world, that we have to use really ridicoulous translation.
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2011
  13. Theokritos

    Theokritos Moderator

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    How about calling one European Golden Stick and the other Czechoslovakian Golden Stick?
     
  14. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    That would make too much sense. :laugh:

    Unfortunately, the source material for the awards doesn't make a distinction, which is what leads to a lot of confusion.
     
  15. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    Where does Milan Nový rank among Czech players?

    I have no idea why these two posts disappeared into thin air when I tried to merge threads but here they are quoted. I merged because the information in this thread would be very useful in answering begbeee's question

     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011

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