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Bucko McDonald
Bucko McDonald
Number: 3
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 205
Shoots: Left
Born: Oct 31, 1914
Birthplace: Fergus, ON, Canada
Hometown: Fergus, Ontario
Acquired: Traded to Detroit by Buffalo (IHL) for Gamey Lederman and Lloyd Gross on January 9, 1935.
At 5-foot-10 and a solid 205-pounds, Wilfred McDonald was known in hockey circles simply as Bucko. The muscular defenseman from Fergus, Ontario, began his ascent to the NHL playing with the IHL's Buffalo Bisons in 1933 at the age of 19. He played in the Queen City for two years and then was traded to the IHL's Detroit Olympics. During the 1934-35 season he was called up for 15 games with the IHL's Detroit Red Wings.

McDonald was a steady if not flashy player, who was very much a defensive-oriented player, always taking care of business in his own zone. It was his consistent play which kept him in the Red Wings lineup for the better part of three years before being traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs for Bill Thomson and cash.

McDonald skated with the Maple Leafs until November, 1943 when he was traded to the New York Rangers for cash. He spent two years in the Big Apple and finished his pro career in the minors, playing one year with the Hull Volants of the QSHL and two with the Sundridge Beavers of the NBHL.

Although an all-star defenseman in his own right, many best remember Bucko McDonald as the man responsible for turning Bobby Orr into a defenseman. McDonald coached Orr in peewee and bantam hockey. McDonald was the man who had Bobby play defense, despite his obvious offensive talents. When Orr's father Doug questioned McDonald about the curious move, Bucko responded, "Bobby was born to play defense." The rest, as they say, is history.

Courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame


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