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Friday, April 7, 2017

The Last Maskless Goalie - 1976-77 Indianapolis Racers Andy Brown jersey

Born in Hamilton, Ontario, goaltender Andy Brown joined the Guelph Royals of the Ontario Hockey Association at the age of 18 for the 1962-63 season and after 20 games, he was traded to the Brampton 7-Ups. Two seasons later in 1964-65 season, Brown played senior hockey for the Gander Flyers in Newfoundland.

His professional career began with the 1965-66 season when Brown played in 70 games while going 39-29-2 with the Johnstown Jets of the Eastern Hockey League. He was also loaned to the Baltimore Clippers of the American Hockey League as a one game emergency call up.

Brown was a member of the Long Island Ducks for the 1966-67 season, where as their number one goalie, he played in 45 games with a 23-19-3 record with three shutouts and a 3.07 goals against average.

He returned to Johnstown for the 1967-68 season where he played in every one of the Jets 72 games, winning 38 with 25 losses and 9 ties with 4 shutouts.

For the next three seasons, starting in 1968-69, Brown played for the Clippers in Baltimore as their number one goalie with his best season being the third and final one of 1970-71 when he played in 50 games with a 28-13-8 record with 4 shutouts and a 2.86 goals against average, the lowest of his professional career.

Brown Clippers
Brown spent three seasons in Baltimore

Considered the best goaltender in the AHL at the time, Brown was chosen by the Detroit Red Wings in the Inter-League Draft in June of 1971. He was assigned to the Tidewater Red Wings of the AHL for the 1971-72 season, but had a rough time of it, as evidenced by a dismal 4-16-1 record, a situation not helped by the weakest offense in the league combined with the second worst defense. Brown was sent down to the Fort Worth Red Wings of the Central Hockey League, where he fared better with a 9-4-3 mark in 16 games while posting a goals against average nearly 3/4 of a goal per game less.

Brown Tidewater
Brown had a rough time in Tidewater

Despite his struggles in Tidewater, Brown was called up to the NHL by Detroit for 10 games where he went 4-5-1. Despite masks having been worn by NHL goaltenders as far back as 1959 when Jacques Plante wore one in a game after being wounded during a game after being hit by a puck, by the 1971-72 season, Brown was an oddity, as he played without a mask now firmly in the age of the curved stick and the slapshot thanks to one Bobby Hull in particular.

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Brown defending the net against Montreal's Yvan Cournoyer

During the early part of the 1972-73 season, Brown played with both the Fort Worth Wings of the CHL and 7 appearances for Detroit in the NHL, but on February 25, 1973, Brown was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins. He played in 9 games for Pittsburgh over the final month of the season with a 3-4-2 record.

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Brown was traded to the Penguins in 1973

Brown led the Penguins in games that season with 36, ahead of Jim Rutherford (26 games) and Gary Inness (20) and Denis Herron (5). No goalie on Pittsburgh finished with a winning record that season and Brown was no exception, going 13-16-4.

Aside from Brown, the only other remaining holdout to not wear a mask was Gump Worsley of the Minnesota North Stars. Finally, at the age of 44, Worsley relented after 21 seasons and 855 games, wearing a mask for the final six games of his career at the end of the 1973-74 season, leaving Brown as the last goaltender to play without a mask.

Gump Worsley wearing a mask
A rare shot of Gump Worsley wearing a mask,
which left Brown as the final maskless holdout

The Penguins played their final game of their schedule on this date in 1974, a 6-3 road loss to the Atlanta Flames, which officially made Brown the last goalie to play without a mask in the NHL.

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Brown with his face down among the sticks

With the Penguins leaning toward a tandem of Rutherford and Herron, Brown took advantage of the option of joining the rival World Hockey Association, which came into existence for the 1972-73 season, creating many new jobs for hockey players, a far cry from 1966-67 when Brown was playing in Long Island in the EHL and there were roughly 12 jobs for goalies among the six NHL clubs. With the expansion of the NHL in 1967 to 12 teams, adding two more in 1970 and then up to 16 in 1972, the same year the WHA arrived with 12 teams of its own, there were now approximately 60 jobs for goalies compared to 12 just six years earlier.

Brown, still refusing to wear a mask, chose to sign with the Indianapolis Racers for the 1974-75 season. If he was looking for playing time, he got it, as he played in 52 games, his highest total since 1967-68, while logging 1,023 minutes more than he had the previous season. Unfortunately, the Racers were overmatched and finished a distant last in the WHA as Brown finished with a 15-35 record.

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Brown finally landed a hockey card in 1974-75

Teammate Michel Dion rose to the number one position for the 1975-76 season with 31 games, while Brown was limited 24 thanks to a pulled muscle in his back, while Leif Holmquist (19) and Jim Park (11) were also tried out as the solution to the Racers woes. Of note, Brown finished the season with an astounding 75 penalty minutes that season!

Brown Racers 2
Brown's spectacular style on display in Indianapolis

Brown returned to the Racers for one final season in 1976-77, but the Racers crease was a revolving door that season, with Dion (42 games), Park (31), Paul Hoganson (11), Brown (10) and Randy Burchell (5) all seeing time in goal for Indianapolis. Those with a keen eye for statistics will note that those games played all add up to 99 games in the Racers 81 games, meaning head coach Jacques Demers was not hesitant to yank his starter, as Indianapolis changed goalies in 18 games or more than one out of every five played.

While the NHL is known for its parochial stance on its place in the world of hockey, the WHA did actually play for seven seasons despite the NHL's dismissal of the entire existence of the rival league, and while nearly every mention of Brown being the last goalie to play without a mask in the NHL recognizes today, April 7th in 1974 as the date the last goalie played without a mask, he never did adopt one during his three seasons with Indianapolis through the 1976-77 season. Brown began the schedule playing in ten of the Racers first 14 games, he suffered a spinal injury which eventually led to his retirement at the age of 33, making November 10, 976 the date of the last professional goaltender to play without a mask.

Today's featured jersey is a 1976-77 Indianapolis Racers Andy Brown jersey. The Racers were formed for the 1974-75 season and played four seasons in the WHA before folding 25 games into their fifth season. They wore the same jersey style for their entire run, best remembered for being worn by Wayne Gretzky during his professional debut.

Brown Racers

Thursday, April 6, 2017

1983-84 Montreal Canadiens Claude Lemieux Jersey

Hate him or love him, Claude Lemieux is one of the most polarizing, yet accomplished players in NHL history.

His junior hockey resume begins with the Trois-Rivieres Draveurs of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League for the 1982-83 season when Lemieux scored 28 goals and 66 points in 62 games while announcing his presence with 213 penalty minutes. Lemieux was then drafted 26th overall by the Montreal Canadiens during the 1983 NHL Entry Draft.

Lemieux Canadiens 1
Lemieux was drafted in 1983 by the Montreal Canadiens

He returned to junior hockey for the 1983-84 season, now with the Verdun Juniors. His rugged style of play was still in full effect, as he amassed 227 penalty minutes in 51 games played while raising his offensive game to a new level with 41 goals and 45 assists for 86 points, more than a point and a half per game. He also made his NHL debut with the Canadiens that season, seeing action in 8 games with a goal and an assist. He also appeared in two playoff games for the Nova Scotia Voyageurs of the American Hockey League after scoring 20 points in 9 playoff games for Verdun.

He returned to Verdun once more for the 1984-85 season, now as the team captain. He lit up the scoreboard with 58 goals and 66 assists for 124 points in 52 games and continued his torrid pace in the postseason with 23 goals and 40 points in just 14 playoff games, which earned him the Guy Lafleur Trophy as the QMJHL Playoff MVP.

Lemieux Verdun
Lemieux was the playoff MVP for Verdun in 1985

That season Lemieux also made his international debut for Canada at the 1985 World Juniors, scoring 3 goals and 5 points in 6 games as Canada captured the gold medal.

Lemieux continued to develop during the 1985-86 season with 58 games with the Sherbrooke Canadiens of the AHL, scoring 21 goals and 53 points in 58 games. He also played ten games with Montreal in the NHL with a goal and an assist before becoming a vital member of the club during the playoffs where he scored an eye opening 10 goals in 20 games, with four of those goals being game winners as Montreal would win the first Stanley Cup of his career.

Lemieux Stanley Cup Montreal 1986
Lemieux won the Stanley Cup with Montreal in 1986

That performance led to Lemieux playing full time for the Canadiens in the 1986-87 season, playing in 76 games with 27 goals and 53 points. Montreal went on another extended playoff run, with Lemieux scoring 13 points in 17 games. He was also named to the squad of NHL All-Stars who took on the Soviet Union in the two game Rendez-vous '87 that took the place of the traditional NHL All-Star Game that season.

Before the start of the next NHL season, Lemieux once again suited up for Canada, this time at the 1987 Canada Cup, where he contributed a goal and an assist in 6 games as Canada would defeat the Soviet Union in a three game final to win the tournament.

Lemieux would play three more seasons for Montreal, which included reaching the 30 goal mark for the first time with 31 in 1987-88. Montreal again reached the Stanley Cup Finals in 1989 before falling in seven games to the Calgary Flames. His final season with Montreal was ruined by an abdominal strain just as the season was getting underway which limited him to 39 games.

Before the start of the 1990-91 season, Lemieux was traded to the New Jersey Devils for Sylvain Turgeon and erased any doubts he was back to full health by playing in 78 games while scoring 30 goals for the second time. He has his first 40 goal season in 1991-92 with 41 in 74 games.

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Lemieux scored 40 goals during the Devils final season in red and green jerseys

In 1992-93, Lemieux again reached the 30 goal mark while he set career highs with 51 assists and 81 points to lead the Devils in scoring for the second consecutive season.

Lemieux Devils 3
Lemieux set a career high in points in 1992-93 in the Devils new red and black jerseys

While he was limited to 18 goals and 44 points in 1993-94, the Devils made it to the Conference Finals before losing in overtime of Game 7 in an epic series against the eventual champion New York Rangers.

The 1994-95 season was delayed by labor problems, but once the postseason got underway, Lemieux's game came to life and he scored 13 goals and 16 points in 20 playoff games as the Devils won the Stanley Cup, with Lemieux being named the winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy as the playoff MVP.

Lemieux Conn Smythe
Lemieux won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the 1995 Playoff MVP

Winning the cup would prove to be Lemieux's final game with New Jersey, as he was involved in a three way trade that saw him wind up being traded to the Colorado Avalanche for their first season of play after the Quebec Nordiques were relocated to Denver.

The Nordiques were a talented team on the rise before moving to Colorado, but the arrival during the season of goaltender Patrick Roy elevated the club to another level. Additionally, playing with the likes of Joe Sakic and Peter Forsberg revitalized Lemieux's offensive game, as he immediately scored 39 goals and 71 points, both the second highest of his career.

Lemieux Avalanche 1
After winning a Stanley Cup and Conn Smythe,
the Devils traded Lemieux to the Avalanche

In the playoffs, Colorado eliminated the Vancouver Canucks, Chicago Blackhawks and began an intense rivalry with the Detroit Red Wings before sweeping the upstart Florida Panthers in four games to win Lemieux's second consecutive Stanley Cup, making him just the fifth player to ever win back-to-back cups with two different teams.

The flash point of the Avalanche rivalry with the Red Wings can be traced back to a check from behind by Lemieux on Detroit's Kris Draper, who smashed face first into the top edge of the boards, breaking his jaw, nose and cheekbone which resulted in a concussion and facial reconstructive surgery. Lemieux was suspended for two games by the NHL, while many felt the severity of the incident deserved a harsher penalty. The animosity was genuine between the two clubs, as voiced by Detroit's Dino Ciccarelli, who lamented after the series, "I can't believe I shoot that guy's firggin' hand after the game. That pisses me right off."

Lemieux Draper hit
Draper falling to the ice after being nailed by Lemieux

In the fall of 1996, Lemieux was once again called upon by Canada, this time for the 1996 World Cup of Hockey.

Lemieux was limited by injuries in 1996-97, but once again rose to the moment in the playoffs. After scoring 11 goals in 45 regular season games, he scored 13 goals in 17 playoff games. The Red Wings were also gunning for Lemieux during the regular season. During their fourth meeting on March 26, 1997, the Red Wings Darren McCarty suckerpunched Lemieux with a right hook, ripped his helmet off and rained blows on Lemieux, who covered up after the sneak attack. McCarty then drilled Lemieux repeatedly with violent punches before dragging him over to the boards and kneeing him in the head before the officials restrained him.

McCarty Lemieux
McCarty's attack on Lemieux in retribution for his hit on Draper

This fight also led to numerous other brawls, most notably when goaltenders Roy and Mike Vernon staged a slugfest at center ice which left Roy bloodied. Appallingly, McCarty would only receive a double minor for roughing for his attack which would have landed anyone else in jail had it happened in public.

Lemieux would fight McCarty again right off the opening faceoff on a game on November 11, 1997, as McCarty would change move from right wing to left wing to line up opposite McCarty for a chance to restore his reputation after being accused of "turtling" when he covered up after being flattened by McCarty's sneak attack the previous March.

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Lemieux and McCarty fought again for a second time
in one of hockey's all-time best rivalries

Lemieux would go on to score 26 goals and 53 points that season while the Avalanche and Red Wings would engage in another bout of mayhem when late in the season the two teams would stage another brawl that featured goaltenders Roy and Chris Osgood.

After playing a full season of 82 games with 27 goals and 51 points, Lemieux and the Avalanche would make it to the Conference Finals, but fall to the eventual champion Dallas Stars.

After 13 games of the 1999-00 season, Lemieux was traded back to New Jersey, where he scored 17 goals and 38 points in 70 games, which included Lemieux playing in his 1,000th NHL game on this date in 2000 against the Buffalo Sabres. The Devils qualified for the playoffs, Lemieux's 15th consecutive postseason dating back to 1986. New Jersey swept Florida, defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs in 6, outlasted the Philadelphia Flyers in 7 and won the third Stanley Cup of Lemieux's career by defeating Dallas in 6 games.

Lemieux Devils 2000
Lemieux won his fourth Stanley Cup in 2000

Once again, lifting the cup brought a close to his time in New Jersey, as Lemieux signed as a free agent with the Phoenix Coyotes for the 2000-01 season. He would play in just 46 games for the Coyotes that season before returning to play a full schedule of 82 games in 2001-02, scoring 41 points.

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Lemieux signed as a free agent with Phoenix

He would return to Phoenix for a third season, but after 36 games, he was traded to the Stars where he would play the final 32 games of his NHL career.

Lemieux did play in 7 games with EV Zug in Switzerland in 2003-04 as well as 5 playoff games to close out his career.

Or so we thought...

After four full seasons away from the ice, Lemieux unexpectedly made a comeback at the age of 43! Oddly, Lemieux played pair of games with the China Sharks of the Asian Hockey League and then 23 games with the Worcester Sharks of the AHL before being recalled by the San Jose Sharks, returning to the NHL for the first time  in nearly six years. He would play 18 games with San Jose with one assist and 21 penalty minutes before retiring for a second time that summer.

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Seemingly out of nowhere, Lemieux was back in the NHL with the Sharks

Lemieux would play in the NHL playoffs 18 of his 19 seasons, playing in 234 postseason games with 80 goals, 78 assists and 158 points as well as 529 penalty minutes. His 234 games played are fourth all-time and his 19 game winning goals in the playoffs are second only to Wayne Gretzky's 24. His 80 playoff goals rank ninth all-time.

Lemieux would finish with 1,215 games played with 379 goals and 407 assists for 786 points with 1,777 penalty minutes. He would win a Conn Smythe Trophy in 1995 and four Stanley Cups with Montreal in 1986, New Jersey in 1996, Colorado in 1996 and the Devils again in 2000.

Today's first featured jersey is a 1983-84 Montreal Canadiens Claude Lemieux jersey from his rookie season.

Montreal Canadiens 1983-84 jersey

Today's second featured jersey is a 1995-96 Colorado Avalanche Claude Lemieux jersey worn during the 1996 Stanley Cup Finals.

The Avalanche would burst onto the scene with unique jerseys with zig-zag arm and waist stripes that mimicked a mountain range and a unique burgundy and blue color scheme, unlike anything that has ever been worn in the NHL. They would win a pair of Stanley Cups in this style which would be used all the way through the 2006-07 season.

Colorado Avalanche 1995-96 F jersey
Colorado Avalanche 1995-96 B jersey

Today's third featured jersey is a 1999-00 New Jersey Devils Claude Lemieux jersey worn during the 2000 Stanley Cup Finals.

The Devils would still be wearing their original red and green jerseys during Lemieux's first two seasons until changing to their new red and black colors for the 1992-93 season. They would win three Stanley Cups to date in this style jersey, which remains in use unchanged through today, surviving the change to the Reebok Edge jerseys in 2007-08, which killed off many styles, including those worn above by the Avalanche.

New Jersey Devils 1999-00 F jersey
New Jersey Devils 1999-00 B jersey

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus featured jersey is a 2000-01 Phoenix Coyotes Claude Lemieux jersey. When the Winnipeg Jets relocated to Phoenix for the 1996-97 season, they turned the hockey world on its ear with these unusual jerseys with Southwest inspired colors and Native American striping patterns in addition to their somewhat busy and rather bizarre logo, not to mention their unique choice of font for the names and especially numbers.

This style was worn for 12 seasons until a complete, and we mean complete overhaul of their identity package when they moved into their new arena, which changed the team colors, logo and, of course, their jerseys, bringing an end to the era of their highly unique and unusual original jerseys.

With this being the 20th Anniversary of the Coyotes, the team revived their original black jerseys for two games as celebratory throwbacks.

Phoenix Coyotes 2000-01 F jersey
Phoenix Coyotes 2000-01 B jersey

In today's video section, we hope you have some time on your hands today, as McCarty and Lemieux meet up for the first time ever to discuss the incident and what led up to it, thirteen years after the incident. It's a fascinating insight into "The Code" among hockey players and the mindset of both McCarty and Lemieux both then and now and the respect they have for each other. It's quite possibly the most interesting interview we've ever posted on Third String Goalie.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

1975-76 Calgary Cowboys Butch Deadmarsh Jersey

Born on this date in 1960, left winger Butch Deadmarsh began his road to professional hockey with the Kelowna Buckaroos during the 1967-68 season, the same season the NHL expanded from six teams to 12.

For the 1968-69 season, Deadmarsh played 47 games for the Brandon Wheat Kings of the Western Canada Junior Hockey League, scoring 189 goals and 42 points while being whistled for 130 penalty minutes. He made his case as a pro prospect the following season with the Wheat Kings when, in 54 games, he essentially doubled his goal production to 37 while adding 33 assists for 70 points while spending a league leading 301 minutes in the penalty box, showing the toughness desired by the NHL.

This led to Deadmarsh being drafted with the first pick in the second round, 15th overall, by the expansion Buffalo Sabres in the 1970 NHL Amateur Draft.

Deadmarsh made his NHL debut during the first ever Sabres game on October 10, 1970 and fought Lowell MacDonald. He eventually played in 10 games for Buffalo that season but without scoring a point,. He was assigned to the Salt Lake Golden Eagle for the Western Hockey League for the majority of the 1970-71 season, playing in 59 games, scoring 11 times while assisting on nine others in addition to serving 128 minutes in penalties.

Deadmarsh Sabres
Deadmarsh made his NHL debut with the Sabres

Unable to crack the Sabres lineup for the 1971-72 season, he spent the majority of his time with the Cincinnati Swords of the American Hockey League, finishing third in scoring with a team leading 34 goals and 61 points. He did play another dozen games with the Sabres, which included scoring his first NHL goal.

Deadmarsh split the 1972-73 season between Cincinnati (12 games and 11 points) and the Sabres, where he played in 34 games with a goal and an assist, before being traded to the expansion Atlanta Flames. While with Atlanta, he played in 19 games, scoring once.

Deadmarsh Flames 2
Deadmarsh played with the expansion Flames in Atlanta

His 1973-74 season was curtailed by a broken ankle in early January, which forced him to miss nearly two months. He was able to play in 42 games for the Flames, scoring 6 goals, double his previous NHL total of 3 goals in 75 games spread out over three seasons. He did make his NHL postseason debut with 4 games with 17 penalty minutes.

As often seems to be the case, some players are destined for championship after championship by being fortunate enough to find themselves as a part of a dynasty with the likes of the Montreal Canadiens or New York Islanders, while others seem condemned to spend their entire career starting over at the bottom again and again. Such was the case for Deadmarsh, as he was selected by the upstart Kansas City Scouts, who claimed him from the Flames during the 1974 Expansion Draft.

Deadmarsh Scouts
Deadmarsh played for expansion teams in Buffalo, Atlanta and Kansas City

Deadmarsh, named as an alternate captain by Kansas City, saw action in 20 games for the Scouts in 1974-75, scoring 3 goals and 5 points before he became the first player ever sold from an NHL team to a WHA team. He actually set the deal in motion himself, when he declared his desire to play in the WHA, and signed a contract with the Vancouver Blazers in his home province of British Columbia, effective for the 1975-76 season despite still being under contract to Kansas City for the 1974-75 season!

Deadmarsh tried to force the Scouts to release him by not reporting to training camp and was suspended and fined for each day he refused to report by Kansas City. He quickly reported to the Scouts but the situation was uncomfortable for everyone, and, afraid to lose Deadmarsh at the end of the year without any compensation, Scouts general manager Sid Abel decided to sell him for $30,000, the NHL waiver price.

His WHA debut came on November 29, 1974 in a 5-1 win at home over the New England Whalers. In all, Deadmarsh played 38 games for the troubled Blazers franchise, scoring 7 goals and 15 points.

The Blazers franchise had originally been intended to play in Florida as the Miami Screaming Eagles for the inaugural 1972-73 season, but when that plan failed to materialize, the team instead found a home in Philadelphia as the Blazers. The franchise got off to a disastrous start when the team's first home game when the late arriving(!) Zamboni drove onto the ice, which promptly cracked under its weight, forcing the game to be cancelled! Star signing Derek Sanderson, signed to a $2.6 million, five year contract, lasted just eight games before being bought out for $1 million and goaltender Bernie Parent left the team in a financial dispute after the team's first playoff game. In the end, the franchise was sold after just one season and the new owners moved the club to Vancouver for the 1973-74 season.

During their second season in Vancouver, Deadmarsh joined the club, but the Blazers were unable to compete with the Vancouver Canucks of the NHL, with whom they shared the Pacific Coliseum and the team was moved again, for the third time in three seasons (counting the change in plans from Miami to Philadelphia) and were renamed the Calgary Cowboys.

Deadmarsh moved with the team for the 1975-76 season and promptly set major league career highs games played, goals, assists, points and penalty minutes. His 26 goals and 28 assists for 54 points were good for fourth on the Cowboys while his 196 penalty minutes led the team. He also played in the only 8 playoff games of his WHA career, getting credit for a lone assist.

Deadmarsh Cowboys
Deadmarsh moved with the Blazers to Calgary

Seemingly having found a home with Calgary after his solid 1975-76 season, Deadmarsh was traded in September of 1976 to the second incarnation of the Minnesota Fighting Saints, which was the relocated Cleveland Crusaders. Deadmarsh played 35 games for the Fighting Saints, scoring 9 goals and 13 assists before another pair of trades in January of 1977 sent him from Minnesota back to Calgary!

Deadmarsh Fighting Saints
Deadmarsh wasn't with the Fighting Saints long enough to get a photo of him in a jersey, and was instead shown in an airbrushed Calgary jersey

The first trade on January 9th which was supposed to send Deadmarsh back to the Cowboys was cancelled when Rich Lemieux refused to report to Minnesota. A second deal was then worked out, which sent Deadmarsh back to Calgary along with John Arbour in exchange for Danny Gruen and some much needed cash, as the Fighting Saints would fold on January 14th shortly after the deal that saw Deadmarsh escape the doomed Fighting Saints.

Back with the Cowboys, Deadmarsh played in 38 games with 13 goals and 17 assists for 30 points. Despite all the unrest, he totaled a combined 22 goals and 43 points during the 1976-77 season.

Life in the WHA was not easy for those not lucky enough to be with the Quebec Nordiques, Edmonton Oilers, New England Whalers or Winnipeg Jets, as the 12 other total franchises played in 22 different locations, and that's not counting the four times proposed teams never took to the ice before relocating!

The Cowboys franchise was a prime example of the unrest which plagued the WHA, and with team drawing less than 4,500 a game in a puny 6,500 seat arena, there was no hope that Calgary would be included in any move to the NHL without a new arena. When the NHL voted down any merger plans for 1977, and with the team selling just 2,000 season tickets for the 1977-78 season, ownership folded the franchise in August of 1977.

Deadmarsh then signed with Edmonton as a free agent for the 1977-78 season, but any hoped for stability for the well traveled winger were dashed when he was traded to the Cincinnati Stingers after 20 games, one goal and 4 points with the Oilers. He finished the season and his career with 45 games with the Stingers, scoring 7 goals and 17 assists.

Deadmarsh retired with 137 NHL games played, scoring 12 goals and 5 assists for 17 points in five seasons, while in the WHA, he saw action in 255 games with 63 goals and 66 assists for 129 points over four seasons.

While some players in the NHL spend their entire careers with one team, with a some even winning multiple championships, there are others who forge careers under trying circumstances, yet persevere regardless of the situation. Deadmarsh is a prime example, as he would end up playing for three NHL expansion clubs and five WHA clubs, who were nearly all broke, either moving or folding out from under him over the course of his career.

Deadmarsh Auto

Today's featured jersey is a 1975-76 Calgary Cowboys Butch Deadmarsh jersey as worn during his finest season as a professional when he scored 26 goals and 54 points in 79 games, more than twice as many goals and three times the points than he scored in five NHL seasons!

The Cowboys wore jerseys with lace-up collars for 1975-76, changing to jerseys with identical striping for 1976-77, only now with a v-neck collar.

Calgary Cowboys 1975-76 F jersey
Calgary Cowboys 1975-76 B jersey

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

1983-84 Winnipeg Jets Dale Hawerchuk Jersey

Dale Hawerchuk, born on this date in 1963, scored 103 points for the Cornwall Royals of the QMJHL in 1979-80 and followed up his stellar rookie season with another astonishing 45 points in 18 playoff games from 20 goals and 25 assists to lead the Royals in playoff scoring on their way to the 1980 Memorial Cup championship. He was subsequently named as the league's Rookie of the Year and Playoff MVP.

Still too young to be drafted, Hawerhcuk returned for a second season with the Royals, leading not only the team but the entire QMJHL with 81 goals and 102 assists for 183 points in just 72 games, an average of over 2.5 points per game. He tied with future NHL head coach Marc Crawford to lead the Royals in playoff points with 35 as the Royals became back-to-back Memorial Cup champions.

1990-91 Cornwall Royals team, 1990-91 Cornwall Royals team

Hawerchuk was then named the Memorial Cup MVP as well as the QMJHL Player of the Year as well as the CHL Player of the Year, making him the prime pick in the upcoming draft.

That same season Hawerchuk made his international debut for Canada, playing in the 1981 World Junior Tournament, making a name for himself with 5 goals and 9 points in 5 games.

Thanks to their distant last place finish during their second season of play in the NHL following the demise of the WHA, the Winnipeg Jets were in prime position to select Hawerchuk with the first overall pick in the 1981 NHL Entry Draft.

Hawerchuk did not disappoint, leading the Jets to an NHL record 48 point single season improvement in the standings thanks to a team leading 45 goals and 103 points, making him the youngest player to ever reach 100 points. Additionally, he played in that season's NHL All-Star Game and won the Calder Trophy as the league's Rookie of the Year.

Following the Jets early exit from the playoffs, he made his World Championships debut, scoring three times on his way to earning a bronze medal.

Another 40 goal season followed in 1982-83 before he reeled off five consecutive seasons of 100 points or more, highlighted by his stellar 1984-85 season of 53 goals and 77 assists for 130 points, all career highs, which saw him finish 3rd in the NHL scoring race. This was also the same season when Hawerchuk was named as the Jets team captain.

Hawerchuk Jets, Hawerchuk Jets

During that stretch of 100+ point seasons from 1983-84 to 1987-88, Hawerchuk also participated in the 1986 World Championships (6 points in 8 games, earning a second bronze medal), Rendez-vous '87, in which a team of NHL All-Stars took part in a two game series against the Soviet Union, and the prestigious 1987 Canada Cup, during which he scored 4 goals and 6 points in 9 games as Canada emerged victorious.

While his streak of 100 point seasons would end in 1988-89 with "just" 96 points, he would extend his streak of consecutive 40 goal seasons to five. With the Jets missing the playoffs, Hawerchuk would captain Team Canada at the 1989 World Championships in Stockholm, Sweden, totaling 12 points in 10 games as the Canadians brought home a silver medal.

He would play one final season in Winnipeg before being traded to the Buffalo Sabres, along with a first round draft pick (which became Brad May) , in a blockbuster trade for Phil Housely, former Royals teammate Scott Arniel, Jeff Parker and Buffalo's first round pick, which the Jets used to select Keith Tkachuk.

Hawerchuk's goal scoring in Buffalo not approach is totals in Winnipeg, but his playmaking skills would come to the fore, as he helped set up snipers such as Dave Andreychuk, Pierre Turgeon, Alexander Mogilny and Pat LaFontaine, which allowed him to lead the club in scoring in 1991, 1992 and 1994, with a high of 98 points in 1991-92.

Hawerchuk Sabres, Hawerchuk Sabres

Prior to his second season with Buffalo, Hawerchuk made his final international appearance, skating once again for Team Canada at the 1991 Canada Cup, contributing 5 points in 8 games as the Canadians again won the tournament for the second time in his career.

Hawerchuk Canada, Hawerchuk Canada

For the 1995-96 season, Hawerchuk signed as a free agent with the St. Louis Blues, where he played 66 games of the 1995-96 season, which included his 500th NHL goal before a trade to the Philadelphia Flyers for the final 16 games of the season. He would return to the Flyers for the final season of his career in 1996-97, although he was limited to 51 games of the regular season, Hawerchuk closed out his career with the longest playoff run of his career which concluded with his only appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Hawerchuk Flyers, Hawerchuk Flyers

Hawerchuk's final NHL totals were 518 goals and 891 assists for 1,409 points, which still ranks as #19 all-time 15 years after his retirement.

Following his career, Hawerchuk was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2001, had his #10 retired by the relocated Jets, now known as the Arizona Coyotes, in 2007 and named to the Buffalo Sabres Hall of Fame in 2011.

Today's featured jersey is a 1983-84 Winnipeg Jets Dale Hawerchuk jersey. This style Jets jersey was first worn in 1979-80 as the Jets marked a new era in franchise history as they gained entry into the NHL. This style would be worn through 1989-90 when the club changed to a new style, and would be the only style worn by Hawerchuk while a member of the Jets.

Winnipeg Jets 83-84 jersey, Winnipeg Jets 83-84 jersey
Winnipeg Jets 83-84 jersey, Winnipeg Jets 83-84 jersey

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 1989 Team Canada Dale Hawerchuk jersey as he captained Canada to a silver medal at the World Championships. This jersey was produced by Tackla and featured the company's diamond shape logo along the shoulders. Tackla supplied jerseys for the World Juniors, the World Championships and the Olympics from 1987 to 1993.

Canada 1989 jersey, Canada 1989 jersey
Canada 1989 jersey, Canada 1989 jersey

Extra bonus jersey: Today's extra bonus jersey is a 1990-91 Buffalo Sabres Dale Hawerchuk jersey from his first season with the Sabres. Hawerchuk played five seasons with Buffalo with a high of 98 points in 1991-92 and 35 goals in 1993-94.

The Sabres wore this style from their inaugural season of 1970-71 through the 1995-96 season when a complete makeover of their identity package saw them adopt new colors and a new logo for a decade until a return to their traditional blue and gold colors, which eventually included a return to a modernized version of this classic jersey in 2010-11 after having used this style as an alternate jersey in 2006-07 and again in 2008-09 to 2009-10.

Buffalo Sabres 1990-91 F jersey
Buffalo Sabres 1990-91 B jersey

Today's video section begins with one of our favorite videos of all time, Les Dale Hawerchuks performing their utterly brilliant song "Dale Hawerchuk".

Next, an extended look at the playing career of Hawerchuk.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Fastest Four Goals in NHL History - 2014-15 St. Louis Blues Jaden Schwartz Jersey

On this date in 2015, the St. Louis Blues traveled to the American Airlines Center to take on the Dallas Stars.

The Blues entered the game at 48-23-7 while the Stars were 37-31-10. Goaltender Brian Elliott got the call for St. Louis, while Kari Lehtonen was the starter for Dallas.

Dallas got the first power play opportunity when the Blues Jori Lehtera was called for hooking just 1:01 into the game. Next off the ice was the Blues T. J. Oshie, who was sent off for slashing at 7:28, but the Stars failed to convert on either advantage. The Stars pesky Frenchman Antoine Roussel was called for the first Dallas penalty, this coming at 12:50 for tripping, but two minutes later the game remained scoreless.

The Blues Patrik Berglund was the first to score late in the period at 17:49 when he beat Lehtonen with assists from Zbynek Michalek and captain David Backes.

With just 10.1 seconds remaining in the first period, Michalek undercut the Stars Travis Moen, who was awarded a penalty shot against Elliott. Moen went wide to his right and cut across in front of Elliott and beat him to the other side for a 1-1 tie after the first period.

Just 15 seconds after the puck dropped for the second period, Berglund restored the Blues lead when he redirected a point shot from Kevin Shattenkirk past Lehtonen with the second assist to Russian Dmitrij Jaskin.

Berglund goal 2
Patrick Berglund celebrates his second goal of the game

A mere 17 seconds after Berglund's goal, Jay Bouwmeester fed the puck up the ice where Oshie and Jaden Schwartz broke up the ice, with Oshie centering a pass to Schwartz, who converted for the second Blues goal in rapid succession.

Schwartz Blues
Jaden Schwartz got the Blues second goal in 17 seconds

Right off the ensuing faceoff, the puck came back to Bouwmeester, who mishandled it. Tyler Seguin swooped in and was able to knock the puck over to Jamie Benn, who snapped a wrist shot past Eliott just six seconds after Schwartz goal!

The three goals in 38 seconds, when combined with Moen's goal with just 11 seconds left in the first period, set an NHL record for the Fastest Four Goals in a game at 49 seconds, beating the previous mark of 53 seconds set by the Toronto Maple Leafs and Chicago Blackhawks in 1983. The three goals in 38 seconds also set a record for the fastest three goals in league history from the start of a period, breaking the mark of 65 seconds set by the Montreal Canadiens and Hartford Whalers in 1989.

Of note, the fastest three goals by both teams still stands at a mere 15 seconds when Mark Pavelich and Ron Greschner of the New York Rangers and Willi Plett of the Minnesota North Stars kept the lamp lit in the final minute of the second period on February 10, also in 1983.

That mark was challenged when the Minnesota Wild Ryan Carter and Nino Niederreiter and Buffalo Sabres Zemgus Girgensons managed the feat in 17 seconds on November 13, 2014. Two other times teams registered three goals in 18 seconds, while the Boston Bruins hold the record for the quickest three goals by one team when they managed to do it in 20 seconds on February 25, 1971 against the Vancouver Canucks when Johnny Bucyk, Ed Westfall and Ted Green all scored. Bill Mosienko famously holds the record for the fastest three goals by one player, when he scored a hat trick in 21 seconds on March 23, 1952.

Finally, the record for the quickest four goals by one team belongs to the 1944-45 Bruins, when Bill Thoms, Frank Mario twice, 19 seconds apart, and Ken Smith all tallied in 1:20 against the New York Rangers on January 21, 1945.

The game settled down for a spell, with no scoring for the remainder of the first half of the period despite penalties at 5:14 to Roussel for hooking and Oshie for interference at 5:57.

Dallas tied the game at 3-3 when Seguin scored at the midway point of the period at 10:01 with an assist from Benn. 4:39 later the duo combined for their third consecutive goal when Benn scored his 30th of the season from Seguin and Valeri Nichuskin at 14:40 to now give the Stars a 4-3 lead after being down 3-1 14 minutes earlier.

GTY 468544902
Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin combined for three consecutive goals

Roussel then extended the Stars lead to 5-3 with a goal less than a minute later when he got his 13th of the season from Ryan Garbutt and Cody Eakin, the fourth straight goal for Dallas.

Before the second period ended though, Schwartz got his second of the period and 27th of the season when he beat Elliott with just 26 seconds left in the period to pull the Blues back to within one when assists from Alex Pietrangelo and Shattenkirk.

Schwartz Blues 3
Jaden Schwartz got the Blues back to within one with his second of the game 

The third period was 3:07 old when Roussel and Steve Ott were sent off for roughing. At 4:44, Michalek tied the game at 5-5 with just his 4th goal of the season from Oshie and Bouwmeester.

Just three seconds after an interference penalty on Trevor Daley of Dallas expired, Pietrangelo restored the St. Louis lead at 9:57 with an unassisted goal to make it 6-5 for the Blues.

Schwartz was whistled for hooking at 13:05 but the Stars power play failed to find the tying goal.

With time now winding down and with the Dallas net empty, Schwartz completed the scoring at 19:38 with his 28th goal of the season to complete the second hat trick of his career to make the final score 7-5 for St. Louis after both teams staged comebacks by scoring four straight goals.

Schwartz Blues 4
Jaden Schwartz sealed the victory for the Blues

Despite all the scoring by the Blues, other than Schwartz's hat trick, no other player had more than 2 points on the night, while Benn and Seguin had 3 points each when they assisted on each other's goals during a span of 14:02 during the second period.

Today's featured jersey is a 2014-15 St. Louis Blues Jaden Schwartz jersey as worn when he scored the second hat trick of his career, with the first goal contributing to the fastest four goals in NHL history.

The Blues introduced this jersey as their new primary road jersey for the 20-14-15 season, which in nearly identical to their alternate jersey that debuted in 1997-98 and became the Blues primary jersey the following season. The original version was used through the 2006-07 season until it was replaced for the 2007-08 season when Reebok introduced their new Edge jerseys.

When this style was revived for the 2014-15 season, the only change from the first version is the narrow white stripe on the arms and waist separating the blue and yellow stripes, which was not present on the original version.

St Louis Blues 2014-15 F jersey
St Louis Blues 2014-15 B jersey

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 2014-15 Dallas Stars Jamie Benn jersey as worn when his first goal of the night set the record for the fastest four goals in NHL history on this date in 2015.

The Stars look got a complete makeover for the 2013-14 season when they altered their color palette, dropping gold and changing to a lighter shade of green never wore before during their time in Dallas. The team also introduced a new primary logo and a brand new set of jerseys to complete the overhaul of their look.


In today's video section, Schwartz's three goals, the first of which was the third of the record four fastest goals.


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