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Sid Abel
Sid Abel
Number: 12
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 170
Shoots: Left
Born: Feb 22, 1918
Birthplace: Melville, SK, Canada
Sid Abel excelled in a number of capacities during his extended hockey career. On the ice, he was an accomplished playmaking center and team leader who contributed to three Stanley Cup championships in Detroit. Abel also fared well as an NHL head coach and television commentator. His life in hockey, centered mostly in Detroit, made him one of the most recognizable figures on that city's sporting scene.

After spending a year each with the Saskatoon Wesleys and Flin Flon Bombers in Canada's western junior system, Abel played 15 games with Detroit in 1938-39. He didn't look out of place but was sent to Pittsburgh of the AHL to work on his overall game. After splitting the next season between the Motor City and Indianapolis of the AHL, Abel plied his trade in the big league on a permanent basis beginning in 1940-41.

In only his second full NHL season, he averaged more than a point per game playing on the Liniment Line with Don Grosso and Eddie Wares and was selected to the NHL Second All-Star Team. Abel's excellence contributed to the Wings' Stanley Cup championship run in the 1943 playoffs. That year he also served as the team's captain at the age of 24.

Abel missed two full seasons due to military service during World War II but returned for seven games toward the end of the 1945-46 season. While in the service, he was based in Montreal and skated with the RCAF and the city's Car team. He also spent part of the year in Britain, where he managed to get on the ice with the Wembley Lions.

In 1946-47, he was teamed with wingers Gordie Howe and Ted Lindsay for the first time. The line clicked and began to dominate opposing defenses. In 1948-49, they were dubbed the "Production Line." Abel led all Detroit scorers and was the recipient of the Hart Trophy--only the second Detroit player so honored after Ebbie Goodfellow, in 1940. The next year, Abel set career highs with 34 goals and 69 points. That same year, Lindsay, Abel, and Howe finished 1-2-3 in the NHL scoring parade and the Red Wings won the Stanley Cup.

Along the way, Abel picked up the nickname "Boot Nose" after he taunted Maurice Richard and paid for his insult with a punch that broke his nose. Abel topped the 60-point mark for the second time in his career in 1950-51, then earned his third Stanley Cup ring with Detroit in the 1952 post-season. In a heart-wrenching move, the Wings traded him to Chicago on July 22, 1952, bringing an important era to a close. It was a difficult yet prudent decision for general manager Jack Adams since Abel's best years were behind him.

During his two years in the Windy City, Abel tried his hand as a player-coach. He scored only nine points but, more importantly, realized that he truly enjoyed instructing the players. Abel was encouraged by the role he played in getting Chicago into the playoffs for the first time in nine years. He retired as a player early in 1953-54, then took some time off before planning his next move.

Partway through the 1957-58 season, he took over the Red Wings' coaching position when Jimmy Skinner was forced to resign due to an illness. The coaching assignment ended up lasting a decade, nearly as long as his playing career. Under Abel's guidance, the Red Wings reached the Stanley Cup finals four times--1961, 1963, 1964, and 1966. They captured the regular-season championship in 1964-65 but were upset by Chicago in the semi-finals.

Abel added the responsibilities of general manager to his portfolio in 1962-63, a post he held until 1970-71. One of the major transactions he oversaw was the blockbuster trade that brought Frank Mahovlich to Detroit and sent Norm Ullman to Toronto in March 1968. While still holding the position of Detroit general manager, Abel was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1969.

In 1971 Abel accepted a post as scout and player consultant with the expansion Los Angeles Kings. A few weeks later he couldn't resist the chance to become the general manager of the St. Louis Blues, where he remained until 1974. At one point in 1971-72 he stepped behind the bench on an emergency basis for ten games. Abel followed this up by taking on the same responsibilities with the expansion Kansas City Scouts in 1974-75. Although they finished with only 41 points that first season, Abel's Scouts accumulated nearly double the number of points that their expansion cousins, the Washington Capitals, did.

Courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame




1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 248 187 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 237 199 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 245 224 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 217 204 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 227 248 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 212 223 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 176 209 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 183 219 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54


H. Zetterberg 77 17 49 -6 66
P. Datsyuk 63 26 39 12 65
T. Tatar 82 29 27 6 56
G. Nyquist 82 27 27 -11 54
J. Abdelkader 71 23 21 3 44
N. Kronwall 80 9 35 -4 44
R. Sheahan 79 13 23 -3 36
D. Helm 75 15 18 7 33
D. DeKeyser 80 2 29 11 31
S. Weiss 52 9 16 -2 25
J. Howard 23 13 11 .910 2.44
P. Mrazek 16 9 2 .918 2.38 is the official Web site of the Detroit Red Wings. Detroit Red Wings and are trademarks of the Detroit Red Wings. NHL, the NHL Shield and the word mark NHL Winter Classic are registered trademarks and Original Six is a trademark of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 Detroit Red Wings and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.
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