Eddie Shore Boston Bruins 1926
From the Boston Bruins 1926-27 Team-Signed Media Guide.
Edward William Shore - Born November 25, 1902 in Fort Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan – Died March 16, 1985 in Springfield, Massachusetts was a Canadian professional ice Hockey defenceman.
Shore got his first taste of Hockey when he attended the Manitoba Agricultural College at age 16, and played on one of the college's Hockey teams for one season.
Shore left the Manitoba Agricultural College after one year and went to St. John's College School in Winnipeg, who also had a Hockey team, where he played just 2 games for St. John's before leaving for home during the Christmas break, and would never return.
Shore then played with his hometown minor Hockey team in Cupar, the Cupar Cubs when he was 18 years old, and stayed there for the next 2 seasons.
Shore would then play next for the 1923 Melville Millionaires, and help them win the 1924 Saskatchewan Senior Hockey Championship.
Shore then played with the Regina Capitals of the Western Canada Hockey League, playing in his first professional Hockey game on December 8, 1924 . His team finished last in the league and folded at the end of the season.
The Capitals relocated to Portland in the fall of 1925, and Eddie found himself traded to the Edmonton Eskimos in what was re-named the Western Hockey League. Shore established himself further as a highly competitive and combative player, moving back to defense from his formerly familiar forward position, and earned the nickname, the 'Edmonton Express.' Eddie was named to the WHL's First All-Star Team on defense for the 1925-26 campaign.
As the National Hockey League expanded in 1926-27, new teams debuted in Chicago, Detroit and New York, with each searching for appropriate players to fill their rosters. The Western Hockey League folded and grocery magnate Charles Adams, owner of the Boston Bruins (who debuted themselves in 1924), paid $50,000 for Shore and six other WHL players.
During a practice with the Bruins, Shore strutted back and forth in front of Billy Coutu and Sprague Cleghorn. Coutu body-slammed, head-butted, elbowed and tried to torment Shore. Next Coutu picked up the puck and made a rush at Shore. The two players collided. Shore held his ground and Coutu flew through the air violently crashing to the ice. Shore's ear was almost ripped off but he barely noticed it. Coutu was out cold and was out of commission for a week. Shore visited several doctors who wanted to amputate the ear, but found one who sewed it back on. After refusing anesthetic, Shore used a mirror to watch the doctor sew the ear on. Shore claimed Coutu used his hockey stick to cut off the ear, and Coutu was fined $50. Shore later recanted and Coutu's money was refunded.
The rookie impressed all those who saw him play, and in an era when defenseman seldom ventured past centre ice let alone into the opposing team's end, Eddie scored an unprecedented 12 goals, and showed his moxy with an NHL record 130 penalty minutes. The next season (1927-28), he led the league in penalties again, breaking his own record with 165 minutes. But his aggressive play was countered with finesse both in leading and finishing plays.
"He was the only player I ever saw who had the whole arena standing every time he rushed down the ice. He would either end up bashing somebody, get into a fight or score a goal," laughed Hammy Moore, the trainer for the Boston Bruins during that era.
Eddie Shore quickly became the biggest box office attraction in the NHL, especially when, in 1929, he led the Bruins to the franchise's first Stanley Cup championship. In an era when sports needed a face and personality to get through the Depression, Eddie Shore gave hockey just that, while stars like Babe Ruth did the same for baseball and Jack Dempsey to boxing. Not all were there to cheer Shore — many attended to jeer him, too, but the arenas were packed both home and on the road when the Boston Bruins were playing. With Shore on the blueline, the Bruins took first place in the NHL's American Division seven times.
All-Star games during Shore's NHL tenure were not annual affairs, although the press named First and Second All-Star Teams beginning in 1930-31. Shore was named to the First All-Star Team seven times — 1931, '32, '33, '35, 36, '38 and 1939, as well as to the Second All-Star Team in 1934. But in fact, Shore played a role in establishing what is considered the NHL's first actual All-Star Game. On December 12, 1933, in an intense contest against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Shore, looking for revenge, belted Toronto's Ace Bailey from behind. The hit knocked the Leafs' star unconscious, and rushed to the hospital, his life hung in the balance for two weeks. Doctors performed emergency surgery on Bailey to relieve the preessure on his brain. Ace lived, but was never able to play again. "I was skating with my head down and I didn't see Bailey until it was too late," stated Shore. "There was no bad feeling between us. It was purely accidental." Following the incident, Shore was suspended for 16 games by the league.
On February 14, 1934, the National Hockey League staged an all-star game, with proceeds benefiting Bailey's rehabilitation. The crowd erupted in spontaneous cheering when Bailey, in his street clothes, met Shore, dressed in his Hockey equipment ready for the game, at centre ice. Bailey extended his hand to Shore and handed him an all-star sweater with number 2. The two shook hands and the hatchet was buried.
The NHL All-Star Game took place on a more regular basis after that game. The near-tragic Bailey incident haunted Shore for the rest of his life.
On four occasions, Eddie Shore was also recipient of the Hart Trophy as the NHL's regular season most valuable player. Shore, the first NHLer to win the award four times, was presented with the honour in 1933, 1935, 1936 and 1938.
Shore and the Bruins won their second Stanley Cup in 1939. Shore retired and bought the Springfield Indians of the American Hockey League, where he was player-owner in 1939–40. He was persuaded to rejoin the Bruins after injuries to the Bruins' defence corps, with an agreement that he would play in home games for $200 per match. Shore played just four games for Boston, and was reported as being unenthusiastic about the arrangement. Obtaining permission to play in the Indians' home games, he began to agitate to play in Springfield road games as well, which provoked his trade to the New York Americans on January 25, 1940, for Eddie Wiseman and $5000. He stayed with the Americans through their elimination from the playoffs, and was simultaneously playing with the Indians in their playoff games. Shore's final NHL game was March 24 against the Detroit Red Wings.
Although Shore had played his last NHL game, he played two more seasons in Springfield. The Indians halted operations during World War II, and Shore moved his players to Buffalo where he coached the Buffalo Bisons of the AHL to the Calder Cup championship in 1943 and 1944. After the war, the Springfield Indians resumed play in 1946.
As an owner, Shore could be cantankerous and was often accused of treating players with little respect. He commonly had players who had been out of the lineup perform maintenance in the Eastern States Coliseum, the Indians' home, referring to them as "Black Aces." Today, the term is commonly used to refer to extra players on the roster who train with the team in case of injury. Despite this, the Indians prospered under his ownership, making the playoffs 12 times and winning three Calder Cups in a row from 1960 to 1962. During the 1967 season, the entire Indians team refused to play after Shore suspended three players without pay, including future NHL star Bill White, for what he said was "indifferent play." When the team asked for an explanation, Shore suspended the two players who spoke for the team, one of whom was Brian Kilrea.
Toronto lawyer Alan Eagleson was summoned to settle the dispute. Eagleson convinced Shore that the players were serious about quitting rather than continue playing under his despotic rule, so Shore begrudgingly resigned, turning the Indians over to his son, Ted. The incident had historic ramifications. It led directly to the formation of both the Professional Hockey Players' Association and the National Hockey League Players' Association. "There's no question that the whole thing — the way it developed — created a climate among players and owners both in which we were able to get the association off the ground," said the NHLPA's founder, Alan Eagleson.
Shore took back full control of the team in 1974, changed its name back to the Indians and restored its traditional blue-white-red scheme. He continued to own the team until he sold it in 1976.
The Eddie Shore Award is given annually to the AHL's best defenceman.
The Boston Bruins retired Eddie Shore's number 2 in 1947
Eddie Shore was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1947.
Won the Lester B. Patrick Award for contributions to hockey in 1970.
Eddie Shore was Inducted into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame in 1975