Tag Archives: Denis Savard

Top 100 Habs: #19

#19: Serge Savard

There’s not many players in professional sports that have something named after them.

Serge Savard

Serge Savard

There’s the Gordie Howe hat trick, the Doyle Brunson poker hand, and the NBA Hack-a-Shaq to name a few.

Serge Savard has one of the most famous of the names, thanks to broadcaster Danny Gallivan. After watching Savard spin around an opponent, Gallivan called it the Savardian Spin-o-rama, and the name stuck.

Savard helped the Montreal Canadiens win the Stanley Cup in his rookie season, and upped his value the next year. Not only did the Habs repeat as champions in 1969, but Savard won the Conn Smythe trophy as the playoff MVP, the first defenceman to win the award.

In 18 years, 16 with the Canadiens, Savard won eight Stanley Cups. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1986.

While he was never a threat to score (only twice did he get double digits in goals), he was a rugged defensive player, and an important piece to Habs championships.

After his playing career, he became general manager of the Canadiens. While many of his moves were not popular (such as trading Chris Chelios for Denis Savard), he managed to put the pieces in place for two more Stanley Cups, in 1986 and 1993.

For more on Serge Savard:

Hockey Hall of Fame

Wikipedia

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Top 100 Habs: #52

#52: Chris Chelios

Chris Chelios is a surefire hall of famer, whenever he decides to retire.

Chris Chelios

Chris Chelios

Chelios, now 47 years old, is in his 25th NHL season, and doesn’t look to be stopping any time soon.

Chelios was drafted by the Habs in 1981, and played his first game for the team two years later. In 1984, he played for Team USA in the Olympics and the Canada Cup before making the Canadiens full-time.

His first full season with the Habs the following year was great, as he scored nine goals and 64 points in 74 games. He was named to the all-rookie team, and played in the all-star game that year.

Two years later, he helped lead a young Montreal team to the Stanley Cup.

In 1988-89, he won the Norris trophy as the league’s best defenceman. He played one more season with the Habs (where he was co-captain, the first American to captain the Canadiens) before being traded away to the Chicago Blackhawks for Denis Savard, in what a lot of people call one of the worst trades ever for the Habs.

In total, Chelios has won an NCAA championship, three Stanley Cups, three Norris trophies, and has played in 11 all-star games, three Canada Cups and three Olympics.

For more on Chris Chelios:

Hockey Hall of Fame

Wikipedia

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Top 100 Habs: #98

#98: Denis Savard

Denis Savard missed his chance to play with the Montreal Canadiens in 1980, when the Habs passed on drafting him, instead choosing Doug Wickenheiser.

Denis Savard

Denis Savard

In the summer of 1990, he was traded from the Chicago Blackhawks to Montreal. Three years later, he hoisted his only Stanley Cup as a member of the Canadiens.

Savard was a flashy centre, with plenty of speed. Five times with the Blackhawks he had more than 100 points, and had at least 28 goals in nine of his first 11 seasons in the league.

He wasn’t horrible with the Habs, but he never lived up to the points that made him an all-star in Chicago. He had 179 points in three years with the Canadiens, but you could tell how far his skills had declined in the 1993 Stanley Cup playoffs, when he had no goals and five assists in 14 playoff games.

The 50 points he got in the regular season was the most he’d scored in any season for the rest of his career (another four years).

For more on Denis Savard:

Hockey Hall of Fame

Wikipedia

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