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Jimmy Rutherford
Jimmy Rutherford
Goaltender
Number: 1
Height: 5' 8"
Weight: 168
Catches:
Born: Feb 17, 1949
Birthplace: Beeton, ON, Canada
Drafted: DET / 1969 NHL Amateur Draft
Round: 1st (10th overall)
There was little about Jim Rutherford's career in pro hockey that ever came easily. As a diminutive netminder, he lacked the reach of a Dryden and the quickness of an Esposito. He had his hot nights as a stand up goalie with respectable reflexes and glove hand. But more often than not, he struggled between the pipes with a determination that won the respect of many in the NHL.

He played his junior hockey for the Hamilton Red Wings of the OHA from 1967 to 1969. The Detroit Red Wings as their first choice in the 1969 Entry Draft then selected him. But Rutherford's first round with the Wings was limited. He played a season and a half for the Fort Worth Wings, their minor-league affiliate in the CHL. Along the way he appeared in 29 games at the Olympia in Detroit.

The Pittsburgh Penguins then claimed him in the 1971 Intra-League Draft. As a Pen, Rutherford played parts of three seasons before being sent back to Detroit in exchange for Ron Stackhouse. In his second term as a Wings goalie, Rutherford spent his years on edge in anticipation of being replaced by a new acquisition or a talented upstart.

First Eddie Giacomin was brought on board as the club's number-one man. But his performance was uneven, prompting the Wings to split the action evenly between the two backstoppers. But life between the pipes continued to have its highs and lows.

In February 1976, Rutherford tied Glenn Hall's team record of three straight shutouts, the victims being Washington, Toronto, and Minnesota. But by February of the following year, the Giacomin/Rutherford tandem hit its low with a 9-1 drubbing at the hands of the Toronto Maple Leafs. In that game, the Leafs' Ian Turnbull broke a 30-game goal-less streak by scoring an NHL record five goals as a defenseman.

After Giacomin's depature, the Wings brought in Ron Low who was expected to supplant Rutherford as a starter. But Low, like Giacomin, struggled between the pipes, necessitating an increase in game action for Rutherford. The same situation occurred the following year when the Wings brought in the high-priced Rogie Vachon. Again, Rutherford handled the clean-up duties

In 1980-81, the Wings acquired Giles Gilbert who finally took command of the Wings' goal crease. As such, Rutherford was traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs where he played briefly before heading west to join the L.A. Kings.

On the West Coast, Rutherford played in only a handful of games before making his third appearance in the Red Wings' organization. But by then, the Wings were into a youth movement with leanings towards Greg Stefan and Corrado Micalef. The veteran Rutherford played only one game and was then sent packing to Adirondack to round out his career in 1982-83.

Courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 51 38 9 4 166 114 80
2 FLA 53 31 16 6 143 118 68
3 NYR 53 30 18 5 150 135 65
4 TBL 52 29 19 4 138 123 62
5 BOS 52 28 18 6 151 137 62
6 DET 53 27 18 8 133 131 62
7 PIT 52 27 18 7 138 132 61
8 NYI 51 27 18 6 143 127 60
9 NJD 54 26 21 7 120 122 59
10 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
11 MTL 54 26 24 4 143 143 56
12 OTT 54 25 23 6 153 166 56
13 PHI 51 23 19 9 121 133 55
14 BUF 53 21 26 6 120 139 48
15 TOR 51 19 23 9 117 140 47
16 CBJ 54 21 28 5 135 168 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
D. Larkin 52 18 20 26 38
H. Zetterberg 53 9 27 3 36
T. Tatar 52 16 17 -1 33
G. Nyquist 53 14 15 -2 29
P. Datsyuk 38 8 20 12 28
J. Abdelkader 53 14 13 -3 27
M. Green 46 4 17 -7 21
N. Kronwall 45 3 14 -10 17
B. Richards 39 5 11 7 16
D. DeKeyser 49 6 8 12 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 20 10 4 .933 1.97
J. Howard 7 8 4 .904 2.89