Andy Hebenton
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Andy Hebenton
Andy Hebenton
1962 Topps Andy Hebenton.JPG
Hebenton on a 1962 Topps hockey card
Born (1929-10-03)October 3, 1929
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Died January 29, 2019(2019-01-29) (aged 89)
Gresham, Oregon, U.S.
Height 5 ft 9 in (175 cm)
Weight 182 lb (83 kg; 13 st 0 lb)
Position Right Wing
Shot Left
Played for New York Rangers
Boston Bruins
Playing career 1949–1976

Andrew Alexander "Spuds" Hebenton (October 3, 1929 – January 29, 2019) was a Canadian professional ice hockey right winger, and holds the record for the longest streak without missing a game in professional hockey history.

Playing career

After playing junior hockey for a local Winnipeg team, Hebenton made his professional debut in 1949 for the Cincinnati Mohawks of the American Hockey League. The following season he moved on to the Victoria Cougars of the Pacific Coast Hockey League (subsequently renamed the Western Hockey League (WHL). He starred with Victoria for five seasons, his best year being 1955, when he scored 46 goals and was named to the league's First All-Star team.

The following season his rights were purchased by the New York Rangers of the NHL, for whom he played for eight seasons. Hebenton scored his first NHL goal on October 16, 1955 in New York's 4-1 loss at Boston. He scored twenty goals or more in five of those seasons, his best year coming in 1958-59, when he scored 33 goals and 29 assists and was the runner up for the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy for gentlemanly play, which he had won in 1956-57. After the 1962-63 season, the Boston Bruins acquired Hebenton in the waiver draft, for whom he played his final NHL season. He played 630 straight NHL games in all, breaking the record for the most consecutive games (a mark subsequently broken by Garry Unger in the 1970s[1] and currently held by Keith Yandle).

Hebenton's rights were sold by Boston after the 1963-64 season to the Portland Buckaroos of the WHL, and he remained in Portland for the rest of the league's history (barring two seasons back in Victoria), becoming one of the WHL's all-time leading scorers and perennial stars, and missing only two games. He was a perennial winner of the Fred Hume Cup for gentlemanly play, winning it nearly half the seasons it was offered, the final time when he was 43 years old.

From the 1953 season, with the Cougars, through to the end of the 1967 season, Hebenton played at least 1,054 consecutive regular season professional games; including playoff games, Hebenton played 1,076 consecutive professional games.[2]

Retirement

When the WHL folded in 1974, Hebenton played four games for the Seattle Totems in the Central Hockey League to wrap up his professional career, having played 26 professional seasons in all, a mark exceeded only by Gordie Howe and Jaromir Jagr in hockey history. He played two seasons for a version of the Buckaroos in semi-pro leagues before hanging up his skates for good.

In all, Hebenton played in 630 NHL games, scoring 189 goals and 202 assists for 391 points. He likewise played in 1056 PCHL/WHL games, scoring 425 goals and 532 assists for 957 points. Hebenton's remarkable consecutive games streak lasted at least from the 1952 season through to the end of the 1967 season--he missed three games in 1951 for the Victoria Cougars and two games in 1967/1968 with the Portland Buckaroos-so the streak was likely longer, for an unrivalled total of at least 1,054 consecutive games. By contrast, Doug Jarvis' professional streak--the second longest in history--is 988 games. He died on January 29, 2019 in at an assisted living facility in Gresham, Oregon at the age of 89.[3][4]

Hebenton was inducted into the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame in 2009.[5]

Career achievements

  • MJHL Second All-Star Team (1949)
  • PCHL Championship (1951)
  • WHL Championships (1965 & 1966)
  • WHL Second All-Star Team (1955, 1965 & 1970)
  • WHL First All-Star Team (1971 & 1973)
  • Lady Byng Trophy (1957)
  • Played in NHL All-Star Game in 1960
  • Fred Hume Cup Winner (Most Gentlemanly Player WHL) (1965, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973 & 1974)
  • Currently fifth all-time in NHL for consecutive games played
  • Fourth all-time in WHL games played, third in goals scored, eighth in assists and fourth in points scored.
  • Honoured Member of the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame
  • In the 2009 book 100 Ranger Greats, was ranked No. 53 all-time of the 901 New York Rangers who had played during the team's first 82 seasons[6]

Family

Hebenton's son Clay was a professional hockey goaltender between 1973-1980, most notably as the starting goaltender for the World Hockey Association's Phoenix Roadrunners in the 1977 season.

Career statistics

Regular season and playoffs

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1946-47 St. Boniface Canadiens MAHA -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1946-47 Winnipeg Canadians MJHL 24 21 13 34 15 -- -- -- -- --
1947-48 Winnipeg Canadians MJHL 30 30 13 43 34 6 5 3 8 6
1949-50 Cincinnati Mohawks AHL 44 8 7 15 0 -- -- -- -- --
1949-50 Montreal Royals QSHL 5 0 2 2 0 -- -- -- -- --
1950-51 Victoria Cougars PCHL 56 16 16 32 12 12 6 3 9 2
1951-52 Victoria Cougars PCHL 67 31 25 56 81 13 6 6 12 5
1952-53 Victoria Cougars WHL 70 27 24 51 46 -- -- -- -- --
1953-54 Victoria Cougars WHL 70 21 24 45 29 5 3 1 4 0
1954-55 Victoria Cougars WHL 70 46 34 80 20 5 1 1 2 2
1955-56 New York Rangers NHL 70 24 14 38 8 5 1 0 1 2
1956-57 New York Rangers NHL 70 21 23 44 10 5 2 0 2 2
1957-58 New York Rangers NHL 70 21 24 45 17 6 2 3 5 4
1958-59 New York Rangers NHL 70 33 29 62 8 -- -- -- -- --
1959-60 New York Rangers NHL 70 19 27 46 4 -- -- -- -- --
1960-61 New York Rangers NHL 70 26 28 54 10 -- -- -- -- --
1961-62 New York Rangers NHL 70 18 24 42 10 6 1 2 3 0
1962-63 New York Rangers NHL 70 15 22 37 8 -- -- -- -- --
1963-64 Boston Bruins NHL 70 12 11 23 8 -- -- -- -- --
1964-65 Portland Buckaroos WHL 70 34 40 74 16 10 7 6 13 0
1965-66 Victoria Maple Leafs WHL 72 31 45 76 12 14 6 11 17 14
1966-67 Victoria Maple Leafs WHL 72 24 36 60 19 -- -- -- -- --
1967-68 Portland Buckaroos WHL 70 16 29 45 10 12 4 3 7 0
1968-69 Portland Buckaroos WHL 74 26 51 77 26 11 2 1 3 0
1969-70 Portland Buckaroos WHL 72 36 42 78 9 11 2 7 9 0
1970-71 Portland Buckaroos WHL 72 29 52 81 10 11 6 3 9 14
1971-72 Portland Buckaroos WHL 72 30 34 64 12 11 3 4 7 2
1972-73 Portland Buckaroos WHL 72 30 36 66 26 -- -- -- -- --
1973-74 Portland Buckaroos WHL 78 28 44 72 16 10 2 4 6 2
1974-75 Seattle Totems CHL 4 0 0 0 0 -- -- -- -- --
1974-75 Portland Buckaroos WIHL 20 4 11 15 0 -- -- -- -- --
WHL totals 934 378 491 869 251 100 35 42 77 34
NHL totals 630 189 202 391 83 22 6 5 11 8

References

  1. ^ "Unger's N.H.L. Streak Ends While Simmer's Reaches 12". The New York Times. 24 December 1979. Retrieved 2019.
  2. ^ Ronberg, Gary (24 April 1967). "The Thousand and One Nights of Andy Hebenton". Vault. Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 2019.
  3. ^ Goldstein, Richard (2019-02-02). "Andy Hebenton, N.H.L. Ironman with 630 Consecutive Games, Dies at 89". The New York Times.
  4. ^ "Obituary: Former NHL iron man Andy Hebenton played for Victoria Cougars".
  5. ^ "Andy Hebenton". Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame - Honoured members database. Sport Manitoba. Retrieved 2021.
  6. ^ Cohen, Russ; Halligan, John; Raider, Adam (2009). 100 Ranger Greats: Superstars, Unsung Heroes and Colorful Characters. John Wiley & Sons. p. 106. ISBN 978-0470736197. Retrieved 2020.

External links

Preceded by Winner of the Lady Byng Trophy
1957
Succeeded by

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