James Patrick "Flat" Walsh - Born March 23, 1897 in Kingston, Ontario - Died December 2, 1959 in Kingston, Ontario was a Canadian ice Hockey goaltender.
Walsh grew up in Kingston, and would play his junior Hockey with the Kingston Collegiate Institute until 1915, then the Kingston Frontenacs signed him for the 1915-16 season and then he joined the Kingston Athletic Club from 1916 to 1919.
The Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds signed Walsh for the 1919-20 season, where he would play until 1925. The Greyhounds played in the Northern Ontario Hockey Association / NOHA and the Northern Manitoba Hockey League / NMHL.
Walsh began his pro Hockey career at the age of 29, for the Detroit Greyhounds of the American Hockey Association in 1926. The team only played 10 games that season with Walsh between the pipes for 6 games - all losses.
Walsh was then signed as a free agent by the NHL Montreal Maroons after the Detroit franchise folded, December, 1926. Walsh played just 1 game during the remainder of that season, and also just one game the next season for the Maroons. Walsh would become one of the first back-up goaltenders in NHL history, as the Montreal Maroons kept him around as a spare for the great Clint Benedict in case of injury.
The New York Americans became involved in a dispute with the NHL when Roy Worters was suspended by NHL president Frank Calder for not reporting to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Worters was sold to the New York Americans, but the Pirates failed to inform Calder of these arrangements and Calder, on his dignity, refused to lift Worters' suspension. As a result, the Americans borrowed Walsh for four games and he did quite well, winning 2 of them early in the 1928-29 season. Walsh returned to the Maroons for the remainder of the season and played in 7 more games.
When the Maroons starting goalie Clint Benedict broke his nose and was forced to retire. Walsh stepped in to the starting role for the 1929-30 season and played in 30 games, finished with a 16-10-4 record, then went 1-3 in the playoffs. The Maroons thought that Walsh couldn't handle the duties along, so Walsh split the goaltending duties with Dave Kerr during the next season - Walsh played 16 games with a 7-7-2 record, then played in 27 games for the 1931-32 season, posting a 14-10-3 record and then 1-1-2 playoff record. Also during the 1931-32 season, Walsh played in the Can-Am league for the New Haven Eagles, going 7-9-2 in 18 games.
Walsh played in Montreal for another season, but came down with influenza in 1933, which he suffered for a full two weeks and he decided to retire at seasons end.
Flat Walsh played in 108 regular season NHL games, winning 48, 16 ties, with 12 shutouts and 8 NHL playoff games, winning 2, 2 ties and 2 shutouts.