Tuesday, April 19, 2011

1980-81 Pittsburgh Penguins Randy Carlyle Jersey

Born on this date in 1956, Randy Carlyle played his junior hockey for the Sudbury Wolves in 11974-75 and 1975-76, where he scored 79 points in 60 games as a defenseman which led to him being drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs 30th overall in the 1976 NHL Amateur Draft. Carlyle was also taken 7th overall by the Cincinnati Stingers in the 1976 WHA Amateur Draft.

In a messy legal affair, the Stingers claimed to have signed Carlyle before he signed with the Maple Leafs, which Carlyle denied having done. The Stingers took the matter to court, and when all was settled, Carlyle became property of the Maple Leafs and divided his 1976-77 season between the Dallas Black Hawks of the CHL (26 games) and Toronto (45 games).

Carlyle Maple Leafs

The next season was a virtual repeat, as he played 21 games in Dallas and 49 games with the Maple Leafs, which included scoring his first NHL goal. After two seasons with the Maple Leafs, in which he played in 94 games and scored 18 points, Carlyle was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins, who proved to be a great fit for him, where he immediately found plenty of playing time (70 games), which allowed him to score 13 goals and 78 points during his first season with the Penguins.

Carlyle Penguins

Two seasons later in 1980-81, Carlyle would set career highs with 16 goals, 67 assists and 83 points. He also nearly doubled his previous high in penalty minutes with 136. His play that season would be recognized by being named the recipient of the 1981 Norris Trophy as the league's best defenseman.

He would be rewarded by being named team captain and backed up his previous season's scoring totals with 75 points and 131 penalty minutes. Carlyle would play two more seasons with the Penguins until being traded to the Winnipeg Jets for a 1st round draft pick late in the 1983-84 season.

Carlyle Jets

He settled in with the Jets in 1984-85 with 71 games and 51 points and would maintain a steady presence on the Jets blueline for the next four seasons, playing between 68 and 78 games, scoring between 42 and 59 points. His role would change beginning with the 1989-90 season for the final four seasons of his NHL career, as his game was now focused much more on defense as his powerplay time dwindled, causing a resultant drop in his offensive numbers.

Carlyle Jets

All told, Carlyle would play ten seasons for the Jets, which included being named a team captain for 1989-90 and 1990-91. Over the course of his 17 season NHL career, he would play in 1,055 games while scoring 148 goals and 499 assists for 647 points while amassing 1,400 penalty minutes.

Since retiring as a player, he moved into team management and coaching, including winning a Stanley Cup in 2007 as head coach of the Anaheim Ducks.

Today's featured jersey is a 1980-81 Pittsburgh Penguins Randy Carlyle jersey as worn during Carlyle's Norris Trophy winning season.

Halfway through the previous season the Penguins changed from their previous navy and columbia blue jerseys to new black and gold jerseys to align themselves with the successful Pittsburgh Pirates baseball and Pittsburgh Steelers football clubs, as the Pirates had won the World Series in 1979 while the Steelers were Super Bowl champions in 1974, 1975, 1978 and 1979, both while wearing black and gold, the colors of the flag of the city of Pittsburgh.

Pittsburgh Penguins 80-81 jersey
Pittsburgh Penguins 80-81 jersey

Bonus Jersey: Today's Bonus Jersey is a 1987-88 Winnipeg Jets Randy Carlyle jersey. While Carlyle only played for three different teams, his longevity resulted in him wearing a number of different sweaters during his career, as he was present in Pittsburgh during the change from their navy blue jerseys to their adaptation of their black and gold jerseys and later their gold alternate jerseys.

Then while in Winnipeg, the club changed from their NHL debut style jerseys with the full length arm striping to their final design with it's modernized logo for their final six seasons.

This particular style jersey was instituted by John Ferguson, who came to the Jets from the New York Rangers, where they had used the same exact striping pattern during the 1976-77 and 1977-78 seasons before reverting back to their traditional sweaters with the diagonally lettered "Rangers" cresting.

Winnipeg Jets 87-88 jersey
Winnipeg Jets 87-88 jersey

Today's video section begins with an interview with Carlyle from 1980.

Next, a more recent profile of Carlyle while coach of the Anaheim Ducks.

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