Lorne Chabot

Think of all the great goalies in the Hall of Fame. Ken Dryden. Turk Broda. Gump Worsley. Terry Sawchuk .... the list is seemingly endless. Or is it? If it was truly complete, then Lorne Chabot would be there too.

A veteran of 10 NHL season, Chabot retired with 73 career shutouts with a career goals against average of 2.04! His playoff GAA is an even smaller 1.50. Those stats compare favorably with Hall of Fame goaltenders, and in many cases are better. It's ridiculous that one of the game's true greats isn't in the Hall of Fame.

A veteran of World War I and a former police officer, Chabot was an outstanding senior hockey player, leading the Port Arthur Bearcats to back-to-back Allan Cup championships in 1925 and 1926.

In 1926 he caught the eye of a young Conn Smythe who signed him for the New York Rangers. The Rangers marketing department thought they could use Chabot to draw interest from the city's large Jewish population. He was, believe it or not, to be listed and promoted as "Chabotsky," although Chabot refused to play along.

Chabot battled for the starters job with Hal Winkler his first season but eventually won out. By his second season he guided the Rangers all the way to the Stanley Cup finals. However in the finals Chabot got clipped in the eye and was unable to continue the game. Coach Lester Patrick asked to use a borrowed goaltender (Dave Kerr of the Rangers, who was in the stands) as a replacement, but wasn't allowed to. Patrick, at the age of 44 decided to put the pads on himself. This move energized his Rangers. They played inspired hockey and the game went in to overtime. In a game that Hollywood couldn't dream of, Frank Boucher went on to score in overtime for the Rangers. The Rangers went on to win the Stanley Cup. At that moment Patrick was immortalized forever. This is one of the NHL's most legendary moment.

Chabot's eye injury was slow to heal that summer and the Rangers feared it would end his career so they shuffled him off to Toronto. It proved to be a steal for the Leafs as Chabot enjoyed his 5 seasons in Toronto, including helping the Buds win the 1932 Stanley Cup.

Chabot was traded to Montreal for another all time great - George Hainsworth. It marked the beginning of a lot of trades for Chabot. After one season with Les Habitants he, along with Howie Morenz and Marty Burke were traded to Chicago for Lionel Conacher, Roger Jenkins and Leroy Goldsworthy.

In Chicago Chabot's job was to replace Charlie Gardiner who weeks earlier backstopped the Hawks to the 1934 Stanley Cup but died of a brain tumor shortly afterwards. After posting a league leading 1.83 GAA and winning the Vezina Trophy, Chabot lost his job to Mike Karakas. Chabot refused to be sent to the minors and spent most of his final two seasons toiling with the Montreal Maroons and New York Americans.

Interestingly Chabot played in the two longest games in NHL history. He was the winning goalie in a 1-0 shutout victory in 1933 when the Leafs beat the Bruins that went into a 6th overtime. Three years later Chabot was on the losing end of a 1-0 game while playing with the Montreal Maroons against Mud Bruneteau and the Detroit Red Wings. That game also went into a 6th overtime - lasting 12 minutes longer than the previous record.

Chabot, who has also been credited for introducing the modern day goalie blocker, died in 1946 from a kidney disease. He also had severe arthritis, leaving him bedridden late in his life.


cavepiggy 1:47 PM  

It is a shame that my grandfather has been overlooked for induction into the Hall.I am doing all I can to have this made right though.I have a petion that can be signed at http://www.petitiononline.com/chabot01/petition.html

The list of names will be copied and added to my application this year.

Thank you for a wonderful blog and I really enjoyed reading it!

Donny Chabot


Graham Clayton 2:40 AM  

That issue of "TIME" with Chabot on the cover was the first time that an NHL player had been featured on the cover of the magazine.

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