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All-Time Saskatchewan Provincial Team


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Saskatchewan might have a fairly low population, but it produces more NHL talent per capita than any other place in the world. Because of that, it has produced more NHL players than either British Columbia or Manitoba (each of which have a higher population), and is not far behind Alberta. In fact, if I were to guess, this team would likely beat the Alberta team, and would give the Ontario and Quebec teams a stiffer than expected challenge.


First Line: Doug Bentley, Bryan Trottier, Gordie Howe

Second Line: Clark Gillies, Elmer Lach, Bryan Hextall

Third Line: Bert Olmstead, Max Bentley, Lorne Carr

Fourth Line: Harry Watson, Sid Abel, Theo Fleury


First Defensive Pair: Eddie Shore, Fern Flaman

Second Defensive Pair: Jim Neilson, Brad McCrimmon

Third Defensive Pair: Wade Redden, Bob Baun


Goaltenders: Glenn Hall, Johnny Bower, Chuck Rayner


I think this was the easiest of these so far. There might be some who would shuffle the order, but I don't think there would be an awful lot of disagreement on who makes the team. Everyone at left wing and center is in the Hall of Fame. On the right side, Carr and Fleury are not, but a case could be made for both. Besides, when Gordie Howe is on your roster, it's hard to consider right wing a "weakness." On defense, only the top two are in the Hall, but every one of the others has at least one top-5 finish in Norris balloting, and at least two top-10 finishes. As for the net-minders, it was pretty straightforward. There was a clear line between the three I chose and everyone else, but look at who they are. Even so, guys like Braden Holtby and Devan Dubnyk still have a chance to make a name for themselves.

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  • 2 weeks later...

@ScottM    Very nice work Scott. Like you said, I might mix up the lines a bit, but it's pretty clear to see who makes the team. I love the fact you put Jim Neilson on the 2nd defense pairing, he was very underrated. I hate seeing Sid Abel on the 4th line, but the 3 guys above him at center all deserve their spots. It's getting a tad picky, but myself, I hold Bert Olmstead in higher regard than Clark Gillies. Clark was talented, but he was somewhat a product of Trotts and Bossy also. They would always say, don't wake up the big bear...lol. Ya know, for a flat province composed mostly of barren little towns, they did quite well for themselves.


 I would have like to see Wade Redden eeked out by another d-man, only because of the shameful way he ended his career....all star to AHL reject....wtf, huh?

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Ya know, for a flat province composed mostly of barren little towns, they did quite well for themselves.


One of the characters in my books was basically pouting about how there didn't seem to be anything special about living in Saskatchewan, but when one of her older brothers told her about the things Saskatchewan led the nation or the world in, churning out NHL players was one of them. It may not be very spectacular topographically, but man, do they ever play some high quality out there.


Anyway, I honestly debated with myself for a while about the second through fourth lines on the left wing. I don't think you could go wrong in any order. I felt pretty strongly about Bentley on the top line, but the rest was up for grabs.


As for Redden, yeah he had a bad ending, and as much as he meant to the Sens for so long, I hated to see it. But, bad ending aside, his play was too strong during his heyday to be overlooked and left off of the list in my opinion. No matter how you look at it, though, this is a doozy of a team to have come entirely from a province with a population of barely over one million today.

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