HomeHome  FAQFAQ  SearchSearch  MemberlistMemberlist  UsergroupsUsergroups  RegisterRegister  Log in  



Go down 
Let's Go Pens!!!

Let's Go Pens!!!

Posts : 221
Join date : 2015-08-28

PostSubject: GOOD TO KNOW (and other topics) JEEZ THIS ONE GREW CONSIDERABLY   GOOD TO KNOW (and other topics) JEEZ THIS ONE GREW CONSIDERABLY EmptyTue Nov 24, 2015 2:19 pm

that I live in the healthiest city in the state of New Jersey.


The gold dome in the photo is the state capitol. The building in front of the dome are the state senate and assembly.

This location in scenic, historic Trenton is about a five-minute drive from my home. Chris Christie currently in his second term running the show in the capitol.

The capitol dome now looks as it should. About five years ago, was refurbished. Years of exposure to the weather had turned it a sickly shade of green. Think Linda Blair character in "The Exorcist."

Looked like she had a lot of physically and mentally unhealthy days. Would drag up the unhealthy average in any state.


Linda Blair not to be confused with Wren Blair.

Since Bluliners recently brought up Brian Burke, a little info on Wren Blair. Burke was cut from the same mold as Blair. A colorful hockey personality.

I first became aware of Blair because he was president of the Penguins in the 1970s. Before that, one stop along the hockey trail he made was in the Twin Cities with the old Minnesota North Stars.

Wren Blair can win you a bar bet. Who was the first coach of the expansion Minnesota North Stars? Wren Blair was behind the bench in the first season, 1967-68. He also was the team's first general manager, a position he held into the 1970s.

Here is a link to article on Blair that marked his move to the Big Hockey Game in the Sky in January 2013. A good read.


Blair also was the manager of the LEGENDARY Whitby Dunlops Senior A (amateur) team. Why was this team legendary? Check out the following link:


Keep in mind no age restrictions in Senior A hockey that was highly popular in Canada through 1970s. Your local team versus other local teams with a chance to compete for eastern and western Canada championships, with national champion earning the Allan Cup.

A few guys over the years did win a Senior A Allan Cup and also played in the NHL. I scanned through the list and recognized the following: Toronto D Claire Alexander, Boston F Stan Jonathan, Toronto F George Armstrong, Boston Fs Bobby Bauer, Milt Schmidt and Woody Dumart, the entire "Kraut Line" (while serving in Royal Canadian Air Force in World War II), Montreal G Bill Durnan, Tampa Bay F Brent Gretzky (brother of Wayne and Keith), Armand "Bep" Guidolin (I remember him as coach of Boston and Kansas City Scouts.), Montreal D Doug Harvey, Minnesota G Cesare Maniago and Thugs on Skates and Kansas City Scouts F Simon Nolet.

The story of Claire Alexander is HUGE.


The vast majority of Senior A players not in danger of making the NHL. Playing for the love of the game and competition.

Whitby Dunlops played in Ontario Hockey Association Senior A League. Won Allan Cup twice, 1956-57 and 1958-59. In between, 1958, the Dunlops were like James Cagney charcter in he movie "White Heat," on top of the world. But unlike Cagney, on top of the world in a GOOD WAY.

WON 1958 SENIOR WORLD ICE HOCKEY CHAMPIONSHIP played in Russia!!! (1958 also a great year since it marked my arrival into the world.)

Here's a copy block from Wikipedia that provides some more colorful information, including Blair was like John Madden in that he did not like to fly in airplane. Thus, to go to the world championship tournament, Dunlops took an OCEAN LINER to Europe. Paul, I will have to dig to see which liner the team took as well as the departure and arrival ports.

# # #

Original Dunlops

The original Whitby Dunlops were founded from the remnants of the former Oshawa Generals team of 1952–53. After the Hambly Arena fire destroyed the Generals home ice, the team was disbanded and some of the older players on the team along with coach and manager Wren Blair, became the Oshawa Truckmen and operated from Bowmanville, ON for the 1953–54 season.

In 1954, the Oshawa Truckmen were relocated to Whitby and were temporarily known as the Whitby Seniors, playing out of the now-demolished Whitby Community Arena. The team was soon sponsored by the Dunlop Rubber Company, and renamed the Whitby Dunlops. The team started as a Senior B team, winning its division the first year. The following year the Dunlops moved up to the OHA Senior A League.

The Senior A team would go on to win two Allan Cups in 1957 and 1959 and a gold medal at the Ice Hockey World Championships in 1958. Notable members of the team are, former Whitby mayor Bob Attersley, former Toronto Maple Leafs captain Sid Smith and Boston Bruins president Harry Sinden. Harry Sinden was captain of the 1958 Dunlops, while former Leaf captain Sid Smith was a playing coach. The Town of Whitby honoured this great team for their incredible achievements with their induction into the Whitby Sports Hall of Fame.

The Dunlops were Canada's representative to the 1958 World Championships, as the defending Allan Cup champions. The team took an ocean liner to the championships in Norway because team manager Wren Blair was terrified of flying. Everyone was sick for six days because of the rough waters but the chance to restore Canada's pride was worth it. After a 14 game exhibition tour of Europe the Dunlops competed at the World Championships in Oslo, Norway.

“ It was a traumatic time for Canadian hockey. We'd lost at the '56 Olympics and nobody could believe it," recounted Sinden, noting Canada boycotted the 1957 worlds because the Soviets had invaded Hungary. "In 1958, when we finally went, everyone was anxious to get back what was lost. — Wren Blair ”

The 1958 Whitby Dunlops were inducted into the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame in 1997.[1]


Here is list of Allan Cup winners for which Senior A teams in Canada compete. Dates back to 1909.


# # #

But WHAT IS WREN BLAIR REALLY FAMOUS FOR? Early in his career, after Whitby Dunlops and before Minnesota North Stars, he was a scout for the Boston Bruins...If you read the Star-Tribune article, answer is mentioned therein...Does Parry Sound, Ontario mean anything to you?

GOOD TO KNOW (and other topics) JEEZ THIS ONE GREW CONSIDERABLY Bcontract20orr

That's Wren Blair on the right and a young BOBBY ORR in the middle signing with the Boston Bruins.

Sorry folks, didn't plan on cranking this out now, but got on a roll. Out of time for now. No Detroit connection to bring this one home. But I think some good hockey history in this post.

Even though Wren Blair did not have overwhelming success as an NHL exec, he had quite a hockey life. If the Linda Blair character in "The Exorcist" was a hockey fan, am sure she would approve.
Back to top Go down
View user profile

PostSubject: Re: GOOD TO KNOW (and other topics) JEEZ THIS ONE GREW CONSIDERABLY   GOOD TO KNOW (and other topics) JEEZ THIS ONE GREW CONSIDERABLY EmptyWed Nov 25, 2015 2:52 am

I ran out of time and will re-post later.

Until then, how did Colleen Howell influence the NHL draft?..what rule changes?
Back to top Go down
Let's Go Pens!!!

Let's Go Pens!!!

Posts : 221
Join date : 2015-08-28

PostSubject: NO CLUE...(best can do is a WAG as in wild ass guess)   GOOD TO KNOW (and other topics) JEEZ THIS ONE GREW CONSIDERABLY EmptyWed Nov 25, 2015 7:05 pm

...re: Colleen Howell.  Question

The only guess  Idea I can make off top of head would be change in "local" drafting in Original Six days as in Montreal used to have first dibs on players in Quebec; Toronto had first dibs on players in Ontario, etc.?

Eagerly awaiting post from Bluliners on this one when his time allows. cheers
Back to top Go down
View user profile

Posts : 6
Join date : 2015-10-04

PostSubject: Colleen Howe   GOOD TO KNOW (and other topics) JEEZ THIS ONE GREW CONSIDERABLY EmptySun Nov 29, 2015 12:22 pm

My information was taken from the "and…Howe" autobiography that I read a few years back.

In the early 70's the NHL has a long standing agreement with the U.S. and Canadian amateur hockey associations, not to draft players until they were 20 years old.

Colleen contacted WHA president Gary Davidson and asked if the WHA had the same agreement as the NHL not to draft underaged players.  Davidson checked into the rule and said the WHA did not have the same agreement.  She told Bill Dineen who at the time was coaching the Houston Aeros and Dineen confirmed with Davidson.  Colleen went on to say "believe it or not, on draft day Davidson never told any of the other teams"  

WHA draft in Winnipeg:  Houston's turn came and Dineen announced their choice 17 year old Mark Howe of the Toronto Marlboros (who had just won the 72/73 Memorial cup).  At that point the WHA GM's started screaming and pounding on their draft tables.  "Are you Nuts?  You can't draft him, he's underage. You just wasted your first round choice…It's against the rules!   They were all screaming at Gary Davidson to tell Bill he's crazy.  Davidson told them Bill was right.  Houston drafted Marty Howe next.  At that point Bobby Hull who was with the Winnipeg Jets, told the Winnipeg guys "Cripes, you know what's going to happen here?  they're getting the Howe kids, and they're going to get Gordie to come out of retirement!"  Hull told the Winnipeg guys to draft Gordie and at least they'll have to trade us for the rights.  They told Bobby that was ridiculous.

I love this story but the WHA drafts in 73 and 74 do not show the Howe boys.  But all three Howes are on Houston's roster in 74/75.  I need Badger Bob's help to find out why they don't show up as WHA draft selection…at least anywhere I have looked.

oh…the day after the draft Clarence Campbell, then president of the NHL, called the Howes at home.  Told them their board had convened and they wanted them to tell their boys that if they went to the other league they would ruin all of junior hockey.  

Colleen impacted the WHA draft and NHL soon after.

Colleen sounds to have the same fire as Martha…who's recent speech led the Lions to a Thanksgiving day victory over Philly.

Speaking of Philly…the fat lady has sung…Badger Bob's team decisively defeated the Bluliners in head to head competition.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Let's Go Pens!!!

Let's Go Pens!!!

Posts : 221
Join date : 2015-08-28

PostSubject: Responding to the BOB SIGNAL...and two TIM BURKES in the hockey world   GOOD TO KNOW (and other topics) JEEZ THIS ONE GREW CONSIDERABLY EmptySun Nov 29, 2015 8:01 pm

Bluliners were kind enough to respond promptly when Badger Bob shined the BLU SIGNAL in the sky in a northwest direction from scenic, historic Trenton, NJ toward Motownland seeking help re: a player named Leon other than Edmonton F Leon Draisaitl.

So Badger Bob excited to be able to repay the kindness upon seeing the BOB SIGNAL in the sky northwest of scenic, historic Trenton. Signal being shined from Motownland, by Bluliners seeking help re: the Howe brothers, Mark and Marty, being drafted by the Houston Aeros of the old WHA.

Blu, I think I have the answer.

The net-net is this. The Howe brothers were American citizens (actually may have had dual USA and Canada citizenship.) So WHA ruled that the American citizenship made Howe brothers not bound by the "underage" rule that applied to Canadian players. Also, the Howe brothers were being paid to play by the Toronto Marlboros junior team of the Ontario Hockey League.

As a result, the Howe brothers were taken in first (Mark) and third (Marty) by the Houston Aeros in the 1973 WHA PROFESSIONAL DRAFT. This draft is exactly what it was. Draft of players considered professionals. It took place ONE DAY after the 1973 WHA AMATEUR DRAFT.

The second round pick of the Aeros was Montreal C Henri Richard. The selection of the Howe brothers was allowed to stand despite protests from Winnipeg Jets (Bobby Hull).

Let's begin with this link. It is discussion I found on a chat board. Hey, these are some serious hockey minds. (If FHL needs more expansion GMs, keep these guys in mind!!!) I believe this board is part of a Website that I am familiar with: Hockey's Future.


Now, go to second post in thread from Theokritos. Click on the link Montreal Gazette May 18 (1973). Will bring up article by Tim Burke.


I advise taking the few minutes need to read through and digest the article. If you have a PC, you can left click on the image of the article to drag it to read the last few columns on the right.

(Evidently, Tim Burke is a GREAT hockey name. When I was covering Princeton U. men's team in mid-1980s, Tim Burke was a young assistant coach. He later joined San Jose Sharks as a scout and is now Sharks' Director of Scouting. Too bad I did not stay in touch.

A bio of the Tim Burke I knew:


Blu, as is evidenced by the article, the Howe brothers being drafted in WHA Professional Draft a gray area that the Aeros were savvy enough investigate, ask league leadership about and ultimately act on. Aeros were highly successful with ALL THREE HOWES, winning four regular season championships and two AVCO World Cups, losing in the finals another year.

I also was not successful at finding a full list of the 1973 WHA Professional Draft anywhere on the Internet. But we now know WHA conducted two different drafts on back-to-back days in 1973.

# # #

Awesome quotes from Philadelphia/Vancouver Blazers coach John "Pie" McKenzie, a former Boston Bruins grinder, saying that he was astounded hockey players either did not want to come out to drink beer or would leave after having two.

# # #

I assume the FHL draft is never conducted as was the 1973 WHA Professional Draft...in a "never-never land..."
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Sponsored content


Back to top Go down
Back to top 
Page 1 of 1
 Similar topics
» The Good Old Days
» What's a good speed workout during race week?
» Technology - good or bad?
» Good Judo in Wrestling
» NOT a good week!

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
 :: Chester's Corner-
Jump to: