Hockey is finally back, but we at Last Word on Hockey are still going to look back at each date’s historical significance to the game. We’ll remember the moments that shaped the sport of hockey that happened on this day. Here’s our look at this date in hockey history for September 4th, featuring Clarence Campbell.
Today in Hockey History
Clarence Campbell Becomes NHL President
1946: Clarence Campbell takes over for Red Dutton, who replaced Frank Calder after his death. Campbell serves in the post of league president for the next 31 years. He sees the league grow from six teams to 18 by the end of his tenure.
Campbell retires on June 22, 1977 and makes the Hall of Fame 11 years before. He adds the All-Star Game and beats back the challenge of the WHA. The schedule also increases from 50 games at the the start of his reign up to 80 by the time he steps down.
Other Notable Events
1972: Canada takes Game Two of the 1971 Summit Series, 4-1, over the Soviet Union. Team Canada coach Harry Sinden goes with Tony Esposito in goal to replace Ken Dryden. Phil Esposito scores to give Canada a 1-0 lead after 40 minutes. Goals from Yvan Cournoyer, Peter Mahovlich and Frank Mahovlich in the third give the Canadians the win at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto.
1979: Bernie Geoffrion becomes the new head coach of the Montreal Canadiens. “Boom Boom” has been dreaming of this moment since he was a player for the Habs in the 1950s and 60s. However, he is forced to step down after only 30 games due to health issues.
1999: The Calgary Flames acquire goalie Grant Fuhr from the St. Louis Blues for a third-round draft pick. Fuhr splits time between the big club and the Saint John Flames of the AHL. It’s his final season in hockey before he calls it a career.
2003: New York Rangers goalie Mike Richter retires after 14 seasons with the Blueshirts. He is forced to call it a career after suffering two concussions in a span of eight months. Richter retires as the team’s leader in wins with 301. Henrik Lundqvist would eventually pass him for that honour. Richter backstops the Rangers to their first Stanley Cup in 54 years in 1994. He also helps Team USA win the World Cup of Hockey in 1996 after earning tournament MVP honours.
Happy Birthday to You
1919: Butch Bouchard
1952: Jim Schoenfeld
1963: John Vanbiesbrouck
1964: Tomas Sandstrom
1965: Sergio Momesso
1971: Craig Conroy
1979: Maxim Afinogenov