For my first installment of hockey’s history, I would like to share with you my favorite eccentric Edmonton Express, the kid who grew up hard and took up hockey late to change the game forever. While hockey’s mythos is easily the best of any sport, this man’s legend is so great that it’s hard to believe at times. Punkers and Riot Grrrls, I’m here to tell you about one of the toughest a-holes to ever lace ‘em up, Eddie Shore.
or my favorite nickname of his… Old Blood and Guts!
You don't get that nickname wearing ironic sweaters and drawing a mustache on your finger.
“For 20 years, man and boy, this evil fellow has been punching people, hitting them over the head with his stick, chewing their ears, butting, gouging, shoving, and generally bedeviling his fellow men and always for handsome fees.” – John Lardner
It’s no surprise that one of hockey’s toughest players entered the league how he’d later be remembered: talented, eccentric, mean, and tough. When he was sold to the Boston Bruins for $50,000 and 6 players, Eddie Shore entered the NHL with a reputation following him. Shore had previously played for the Edmonton Eskimos and had been cut by a skate deeply requiring 14 stitches in his leg. Not one to miss a minute of a game (yeah, he played full games), let alone a shift, he went back out, played full on, and popped all of the stitches soaking his pants completely in blood. Later, with the Melville Millionaires, Shore was instructed not to get a single penalty in the championship game. Targeted throughout his career, Shore suffered a broken nose, jaw, lost six teeth, and was knocked out more than once. Despite this, he did not take one penalty. After 50 minutes, he had to be taken off the ice unconscious.
legend says that this is exactly how he came out of his mother's va-jay. he also got a fighting major for sucker punching one of her ovaries.
In Shore’s rookie season, Billy Coutu and Red Cleghorn were traded from the Montreal Canadiens to the Bruins. In their first practice, Shore supposedly strutted in front of them and pissed Coutu off. One story says Coutu body slammed Shore while the other says that Coutu rushed at Shore with the puck and later collided with him. Regardless, what ended up happening left Shore with his ear almost completely severed off.
While it took Shore a couple of doctors, he eventually found one who would sew it back on. He refused anesthetic, watched the doctor patch him up while holding a mirror, and actually made him redo a stitch. “It would have left a scar!” he would tell a reporter later in life. He said Coutu severed the ear with his stick and Coutu was fined $50.00. Shore later claimed otherwise and Coutu’s $50.00 was returned. I guess no blood, no foul.
more evil than Ivan Drago eating black licorise and shaking hands with Fred Phelps.
Other stories have New York promoter, Tex Rickard, hiring ambulances to circle the block with the sirens on (yes, that’s where Slap Shot got the idea) and even posting wanted posters that read, “Dead or Alive” with Shore’s picture all over the city!
I wonder what he thinks of Animal Collective.
Shore’s most notorious incident came during a game with the Maple Leafs. Shore was rushing up the ice with puck in tow when he was hit by King Clancy (man, I love old time hockey names). When no penalty was called, Shore war irate and went for the closest Maple Leaf. Whether accidental or not, he upended Maple Leafs’ scorer Ace Bailey causing him to go head first on the ice fracturing his skull at both temples.
one five year old was quoted to say, "WHOA! SICK!"
Bailey was in a coma for two weeks and had to have two brain surgeries. To raise money, Shore created the first NHL all star game (for real) to donate money to Bailey. The reaction of public forgiveness from Bailey prompted an enormous cheer from the Toronto fans (the all star game was all stars vs. maple leafs) and this photo op:
"you're still an f-in' d-bag. you know that, right?"
Shore’s list of injuries include:
over 1,000 stitches
14 broken noses
12 broken collarbones
5 broken jaws
a broken back
a broken hip
He also holds the unbreakable record for fighting majors in one game. Since players are now tossed after too many, Shore was once able to accumulate five fighting majors in which he fought Montreal Maroons (yeah, there were two Montreal teams at the time) players, Buck Boucher, Dave Trottier, Seibert. By the end of the game, Shore had a broken nose, lost four teeth, two black eyes, and a concussion. Trottier, Seibert, and Shore ended up in the hospital.
While he later became an owner full of other eccentricities, the stories mainly include just making the players actually work the stadium they played in and a complete hard nosed DIY approach to everything.
He was a hockey player’s hockey player.
I can’t get this to post for the life of me.
Click here to watch a video on Eddie Shore.
He is the only defenceman to win the Hart Trophy four times, an all star eight times, and won the Cup twice.