By 1969, with his schooling complete, he elected to turn pro in the Detroit Red Wings' chain with the Fort Worth Wings of the CHL. Over the three seasons he spent in the organization, he got only two brief tryouts with the parent club that amounted to little more than a tutorial on bench warming. Otherwise, he had plenty of time in Texas to refine his game.
His first real break came when the expansion Atlanta Flames secured his rights in 1972. The fledgling Flames could use all of the defensive help they could get which afforded Manery his first chance to show the Wings what they'd been missing.
Over the five seasons that followed, he established himself as one of his team's most consistent defenders. Although not a hitter, he earned his marks as a cool customer who could skate well, move the puck with ease, shoot well from the point, and perform effectively under pressure.
He might well have remained a Flame throughout his career. But by 1977, the club was increasingly strapped for cash. To cut corners, the team traded Manery and his salary to the Los Angeles Kings.
During his first two seasons on the West Coast, he was consistently his team's best all-around defender. He was usually teamed with resident brawler Dave Hutchison who was known to spiral out of control. Manery brought a steadying influence that helped keep the duo more focused.
In his third and final season with the Kings, the usually dependable blueliner became inexplicably lethargic. He plodded through the first part of the campaign like an overripe apple ready to fall. It took some time, but it was eventually discovered that he'd been suffering from an iron deficiency in his blood. He gradually recovered, however, to complete the season and then retired for keeps.
Courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame
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