On This Date: November 26 1977 - Stick-Wielding Harry Neale Attacks Birmingham Fans and is Issued an Arrest Warrant.
November 26, 1977, Birmingham Alabama:
On Thanksgiving night New England Whalers Coach Harry Neale, angered as Bulls fans threw ice, beer, and debris at Whalers players, invaded the crowd and began swinging a hockey stick at the drunken Dixie spectators. Neale was eventually restrained by the police.
The next day the police questioned Neale, and after the interrogation he jumped into a cab, screamed "Get me out of here!" to the driver and—a $120 fare later—arrived in Atlanta.
Two Alabama state troopers were stationed behind the visiting team's bench at the next game in Birmingham.
In 1975 Whalers players Rick Ley, Wayne Carleton, and Ron Climie are arrested for breach of peace in bar in Canton CT.
In 1981 Ron Francis scores his 1st NHL goal and 1st NHL point (an assist) in an 8--5 Whalers win vs Toronto.
Toronto Maple Leafs 5 @ Hartford Whalers 8
1 - TOR : Salming 7 (Paiement, Sittler) (PP) 5:11
2 - HAR : Keon 3 (Howe Mk, Garrett) (EV) 6:10
3 - HAR : Sulliman 5 (Lyle, Francis) (EV) 9:49
Penalties - HAR - Howatt 1:02 ; HAR - Howatt 1:02 ; HAR - Howatt ( (maj)) 1:02 ; TOR - Mcgill 1:02 ; TOR - Mcgill ( (maj)) 1:02 ; TOR - Sittler 13:19 ;
4 - HAR : Sulliman 6 (Howatt, Wesley) (EV) 1:37
5 - HAR : Howatt 2 (Sulliman, Francis) (EV) 1:44
6 - HAR : Francis 1 (Howe Mk, Sulliman) (PP) 4:09
7 - HAR : Stoughton 13 (Meagher, Nachbaur) (EV) 6:37
8 - TOR : Sittler 9 (Martin, Benning) (EV) 6:58
9 - TOR : Anderson 13 (Manno, Salming) (PP) 13:26
10 - TOR : Saganiuk 6 (Gibson) (EV) 13:58
11 - HAR : Macleish 4 (Keon, Miller) (EV) 14:14
Penalties - HAR - Howatt ( (maj)) 4:05 ; TOR - Mcgill 4:05 ; TOR - Mcgill ( (maj)) 4:05 ; TOR - Sittler 9:37 ; HAR - Shmyr 12:49 ; HAR - Shmyr 16:18 ;
12 - HAR : Gillen 1 (Lyle, Nachbaur) (EV) 4:27
13 - TOR : Paiement 7 (Manno) (EV) 9:45
Penalties - HAR - Kotsopoulos 6:55 ; TOR - Vaive 6:55 ;
Shots On Goal
123T Toronto Maple Leafs10131033 Hartford Whalers1419538
Powerplay Conversions Toronto Maple Leafs : 0 of 0
Hartford Whalers : 0 of 0
Goaltenders Tremblay (TOR) (L) 26 saves on 33 shots - 40:00 mins
Larocque (TOR) 4 saves on 5 shots - 20:00 mins
Garrett (HAR) (W) 28 saves on 33 shots - 60:00 mins
Attendance - 10,015
For anyone who has ever met Gordie Howe or seen him play, we strongly recommend that you watch this moving tribute by ESPN's Keith Olberman. It is perfect.
In 1993 Pierre McGuire named Whalers head coach, replacing Paul Holmgren who will focus on his GM duties.
Original Whalers netminder Al Smith was born on this date in 1945 in Toronto, ONT. "Smitty" was one of the all-time great goalies in Whalers history and was a key reason the Whalers won the 1973 WHA championship.
He is also remembered as one of the game's great characters.
His beatdown of Fighting Saints tough guy Bill Butters in the "Brawl in the Mall" is legendary as was his on-ice retirement from the Buffalo Sabres after a pre-game skate in 1976.
The Whalers fortunes plummeted upon his departure in 1975, but his return to Hartford in 1977 helped the team reclaim its former glory.
Smitty passed away from cancer several years ago. He ranks as one the great players in franchise history.
On the day his was acquired from acquired from Washington for Andrei Nikolishin, Curtis Leschyshyn plays his 1st career Whalers game scoring his 1st Whalers goal at 4:55 of OT vs Buffalo.
Introducing The New England Whalers Championship Fabric Magnet!
Celebrate the 1972-73 WHA Champion New England Whalers with a high-quality FABRIC magnet.
This 4.5" x 2.5" authentic magnet is not a cheap plastic or rubber magnet -- this is made from the same high-quality polyester fabric that real banners and jerseys are made from.
This is THE highest-quality magnet ever created. Made for serious fans in the USA!