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Bill McDougall
Bill McDougall
Center
Number: 43
Height: 6' 0"
Weight: 185
Shoots: Right
Born: Aug 10, 1966
Birthplace: New Waterford, NS, Canada
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Acquired: Signed as a free agent by Detroit on January 9, 1990.
It's not often you see a player make it to the NHL without benefit of having had experience in either major junior of college hockey, but such was the case for center Bill McDougall of Mississauga. In fact, at the age of 19, McDougall was still playing Junior B with the Streetsville Derbys in southern Ontario in 1985-86. He had a great offensive year, scoring 45 goals and 132 points in 42 games. What makes the statistics even more impressive was that he spent a staggering 262 minutes in the penalty box.

In 1986-87 McDougall headed west and played with the Humboldt Broncos where he once again displayed his offensive capabilities, netting 83 goals and 187 points in 60 games. The Broncos advanced to the finals of the Centennial Cup, but were beaten by the Richmond Sockeyes of the BCJHL. McDougall, who scored four goals and seven points in four games was named the tournament All-Star center. At the age of 21 McDougall headed to the east coast where he skated for the St. John's Capitals of the Newfoundland Senior League. In 42 games he found the back of the net 66 times while assisting on another 71. After another year in Newfoundland, McDougall joined the Erie Panthers of the ECHL and once again his offensive production was astounding: 80 goals and 148 points with a feisty 226 minutes in penalties and recipient of the league's MVP trophy.

By now many pro scouts had taken notice of McDougall's natural scoring abilities. On January 9, 1990 the Detroit Red Wings signed him to a minor-league contract and he dressed with their farm team in Adirondack. Once again McDougall seemed to have the magical scoring touch, counting ten goals in just eleven games. He was awarded a full-time roster spot in 1990-91 and responded with a 47-goal, 99-point effort. McDougall was called up to Detroit for two games, but saw limited ice time, leaving many observers with the notion that he was never truly given a fare opportunity to showcase his offensive abilities.

In February 1992, McDougall was traded to the Edmonton Oilers for Max Middendorf but he managed to get into their lineup on just four occasions, scoring two goals and an assist. While playing with the Cape Breton Oilers in the AHL playoffs in 1993, McDougall scored an amazing 52 points in just 16 games and was named the playoff MVP. It seemed he was able to score at every level, but for some reason was never afforded a proper chance to excel at the NHL level. Frustrated by the lack of playing time in Edmonton, McDougall signed a free-agent deal with Tampa Bay in the summer of 1993. It was with the Lightning that he saw his only extended period of playing time in the NHL, suiting up for 22 games. But on a lousy Lightning team, McDougall managed just eight points and that seemed to be the final straw that sent him packing  literally.

In the fall of 1994, McDougall decided to play in Europe. He spent one year in Italy before moving on to Switzerland where he skated for four years. He also tried his hand at playing in the German league but returned to Switzerland in 2000.

Courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame

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