Top 100 Habs: #33

#33: Odie Cleghorn

Odie Cleghorn was one of the first stars of the Montreal Canadiens, and as coach a few years later, made a decision that would impact games forever.

Odie Cleghorn

Odie Cleghorn

Cleghorn missed the NHL’s first season because of the First World War, but ended up playing for the Habs starting in 1918-19. He scored 23 goals in 17 games that first year, and followed it up with 19 goals in 21 games the following year.

After a disappointing season where he scored five goals, Cleghorn was back on fire, scoring 21 and 19 goals each of the next two seasons (most seasons consisted of about 20 games back then).

He helped the Habs win a Stanley Cup in 1924.

He was with the Pittsburgh Pirates (an NHL team) starting in 1925-26, where he was a player/coach. He played a game in goal when the starting goalie was injured (there were no backup goalies back then), and won 3-2 over his former team, the Canadiens.

It was as a coach with the Pirates that Cleghorn had the idea to have set lines and rotate them. To that point, most teams would put on players, and they would come off when they were tired.

For more information on Odie Cleghorn:

Hockey Hall of Fame

Wikipedia

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