There are many who will argue that Orr was the greatest player of all time. He played defense but was such a scoring threat that he changed the game from the blue line.
The best was to understand his game and how amazing he was are through the words of former Boston coach and GM Harry Sinden http://bruinslegends.blogspot.com/2006/10/bobby-orr.html
"(Gordie) Howe could do everything, but not at top speed. (Bobby) Hull went at top speed but couldn't do everything. The physical aspect is absent from (Wayne) Gretzky's game. Orr would do everything, and do it at top speed."
While there had been a few offensive minded defenders in the past, Orr took it to a whole new level. He had the speed and skill of a forward to go along with the physicality and toughness of a defensemen. He won the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year.
In 1968-69 he would set the scoring record for defenseman with 64 points. He then blew that away the following season by scoring 120 points. He would top 100 points six times with a best of 139 in 1970-71. He would become the only defenseman to ever lead the league in scoring. He retired with the fourth best points per game of all time.
Orr would win eight straight Norris Trophies as the league’s best defender. He would also win the Hart Trophie, two Conn Smythe Trophies, two Stanley Cups and the Art Ross award. He is the only player to win the big four skater awards in the same season (Norris, Hart, Ross and Smythe). He had 915 points in only 657 games. One can’t help but wonder where those numbers would have ended up.
He went through over a dozen knee surgeries. His knees issues slowed him and eventually forced Orr to retire from the game at the age of 30. The league waived the Hall of Fame waiting period and made Orr the youngest inductee into the hall at the age of 31.