Top 100 Habs: #4

#4: Doug Harvey

Up until Bobby Orr came along, Doug Harvey has the greatest defenceman to ever play the game. Even now, his name deserves to be mentioned in any top three defenceman debate.

Doug Harvey checks an opponent into the boards.

Doug Harvey checks an opponent into the boards.

While he wasn’t an offensive threat (he never scored more than nine goals in a season), he could control the game whenever he wanted. If the Montreal Canadiens were under a lot of pressure, he could take control of the puck and slow the game down. If the team was lagging, he could speed up the play.

He won six Stanley Cups in 13 seasons with the team.

He was traded to the New York Rangers after he kept talking about wanting to form a union. He didn’t lose a step, as he won a Norris trophy with the Rangers.

In total, he won seven Norris trophies, awarded to the league’s best defenceman, in eight years.

He was elected to the hockey hall of fame in 1973. His jersey was retired by the Habs in 1985.

After retiring from playing and coaching hockey, Harvey became an alcoholic and homeless. At one point, he slept in an empty train car. When the Habs learned of his fate, they offered him a job as a scout.

For more on Doug Harvey:

Hockey Hall of Fame

Wikipedia

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