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60-61BosBru
1960–61 Boston Bruins · NHL
Division 6th NHL
1960–61 record 15–42–13
Goals for 176 (6th)
Goals against 254 (6th)
General Manager Lynn Patrick
Coach Milt Schmidt
Captain Fern Flaman
Arena Boston Garden
Team Leaders
Goals Don McKenney (26)
Assists Jerry Toppazzini (35)
Points Jerry Toppazzini (50)
Penalties in minutes Jim Bartlett (95)
Wins Bruce Gamble (12)
Goals against average Don Simmons (3.23)
← Seasons →
1959–60 1961–62

The 1960–61 Boston Bruins season was the Bruins' 37th season in the NHL. The Bruins finished 6th in the league and did not qualify for the playoffs.

Off-seasonEdit

7Sep1960-Schmidt training camp

Milt Schmidt at training camp, September 7, 1960.

General Manager Lynn Patrick made no moves in the off-season that would have any positive impact on Bruins, save one, as Ted Green was obtained in the intra-league draft. Green would play only one game in 1960-61 but become a regular on defense. A tough, hard-hitting player, Green was part of the Bruins' resurgence later in the decade.

The Bruins lost star forward Fleming Mackell, who retired from the NHL to become the playing coach of the Quebec Aces.

The 14th National Hockey League All-Star Game was held at Montreal on October 1, 1960. A team of All-stars that included three Bruins, Bronco Horvath, Vic Stasiuk and Don McKenney played against the Stanley Cup champion Montreal Canadiens. The All-Stars won 2-1 with no Bruins recording a point.

Regular SeasonEdit

Aut Erickson

Autry Erickson played his second and last season for the Bruins in 1960-61.

The Bruins had their worst season since their first year in the NHL in 1924-25. There was no suitable replacement for Mackell, weakening Boston's top line. The injury of Bronco Horvath, who missed 23 games, saw the production of the "Uke Line" drop significantly with Vic Stasiuk having his worst season in five years and John Bucyk finishing a team low -31 plus/minus. The depth forwards were not of the quality as in past years resulting in a steep decline in offense. The Bruins finished last in league scoring for first time since 1955-56 and only the second time in their history to this point.

The plight of the Bruins defense began in the 1958-59 season with the trade of Allan Stanley for Jim Morrison and then the subsequent trade of Morrison. Stalwarts Fern Flaman and Bob Armstrong were fading and both played their last season. While Leo Boivin and Doug Mohns were both excellent defensemen, the Bruins relied on 22 year old Autry Erickson (who played his last full NHL season until suiting up for the 1967-68 Oakland Seals) and 19 year old Dallas Smith. Too much was expected of both Erickson and Smith with the latter being relegated to the minors for five years to develop. He'd return in the 1966-67 season, become the defense partner of Bobby Orr, win the Stanley Cup twice and play ten more excellent seasons with the Bruins.

The Bruins started the season with an eight game winless streak. The third line of Orval Tessier, Billy Carter and Dick Meissner went scoreless and in many of the games, late goals by the opposition resulted in losses or ties. During the October 16, 1960 game versus the Chicago Black Hawks, Don Simmons was hit in the face on a shot by Eric Nesterenko with less than a minute to play in the game. In order to finish the game, Jerry Toppazzini played goal using only the goalie gloves and stick. Toppazzini didn't face any shots and was the last regular position player to tend goal.[1]

23Oct1960-Litzenberger goes after fan

Ed Litzenberger goes into the stands at the Boston Garden assisted by #9 Tod Sloan and #2 Al Arbour, October 23, 1960.

During the October 23, 1960 game versus Chicago at Boston, a fan threw a light bulb at goalie Glenn Hall. It hit Hall in the face, which allowed Don McKenney to tie the score 2-2 with 1:45 left to play. Several angry Black Hawks, including Ed Litzenberger, climbed into the stands and went after abusive fans that picked fights with the players. Litzenberger scored both Chicago goals as the game ended in a tie. During the October 29, 1960 game versus the Montreal Canadiens, Milt Schmidt became the first coach to pull the goalie for an extra attacker on a delayed penalty. However, the Bruins didn't score on the play and came up short in the game, losing 3-2.

Burns goal-6Nov1960

Charlie Burns scores on Glenn Hall, November 6, 1960.

By the end of October, Carter and Meissner were sent to the minors for the rest of the season. Gerry Ouellette was called up and Jim Bartlett was activated. Ouelette would be in and out of the line-up in his only NHL season. Initially, Bartlett impressed while playing with Charlie Burns and Jerry Toppazzini, scoring twice and adding an assist on October 30 during the 5-3 win over Montreal. He played the rest of the year and scored 15 goals in his last NHL season. Ted Green was called up for his first NHL game on November 10, 1960 versus the Detroit Red Wings. However, the changes made little difference as the slide continued with the Bruins going 2-9-2 in November.

28Dec1960-O'Ree-Hay Arbour

Willie O'Ree shooting on Glenn Hall while being checked by Bill Hay, December 28, 1960.

For the November 19, 1960 game against Detroit, two changes were made. In goal, the days of Don Simmons as a starting goaltender had passed. Struggling behind a weakened defense, Simmons was sent to the minors and 22 year old Bruce Gamble was recalled and played the rest of the season in the Bruins net. Willie O'Ree was also recalled for his second and final stint in the NHL. He wore jersey #25 and the changes sparked the Bruins, as they won 6-4 with Don McKenney scoring a Hat trick. O'Ree played the next four games but went pointless and was pulled from the line-up as the Bruins went winless in the remaining games in November. With only 1 goal in 23 games, Jean-Guy Gendron was traded to Montreal for André Pronovost. Pronovost would respond with 22 points while playing the remainder of the season in Boston.

On December 18, 1960, O'Ree was inserted back into the line-up for the game against Montreal. He'd be a regular for the remainder of the season and record his first points in the next game on December 22, 1960 against Chicago. He assisted on the first goal of the game by André Pronovost and then 37 seconds later, assisted on a goal by Autry Erickson. The Bruins won 4-2 in the only multiple point game of O'Ree's NHL career.

Murray Oliver

Murray Oliver would be an offensive leader for the Bruins in the 1960's.

The Bruins had a 7-20-5 record entering the January 1, 1961 game against Montreal at the Boston Garden. O'Ree had switched to jersey #22 (which he'd wear for the remainder of the season) and entering the third period, the Bruins were leading 2-1. Just past the halfway mark, Leo Boivin sent O'Ree on a breakaway against Canadiens netminder Charlie Hodge. O'Ree fired a low shot to Hodge's glove side which proved to be the game winner as the Bruins triumphed 3-2. O'Ree also scored the winner on January 19, 1961 versus Detroit in a 4-2 victory. January proved to be Boston's best month of the campaign as they went 4-8-2.

On January 23, 1961, GM Lynn Patrick triggered a significant deal, sending Vic Stasiuk and Leo Labine to Detroit for Murray Oliver, Tom McCarthy and Gary Aldcorn. While breaking up the "Uke Line", Oliver would become a fabulous playmaker and finish in the top two of team scoring four times over the next six seasons. Stasiuk and Labine would be out of the NHL within two years.

The February 4, 1961 game versus the New York Rangers in Boston was delayed for over two hours due to a snow storm. John Bucyk had a car crash while driving Jerry Toppazzini to the game and four Rangers never made it to the game. The match finally started at 10 p.m. and despite playing with only 13 skaters, the Rangers won 2-1. The Bruins had a single victory in February, 1961.

ORee to Burns-18Mar1961

Willie O'Ree passes to Charlie Burns, March 18, 1961.

Boston fared little better in March as the defense was depleted due to injuries to Leo Boivin and Fern Flaman. Bucyk continued to be a bright spot as he had a Hat trick in the 4-2 win over Detroit on March 2, 1961. Willie O'Ree scored in each of the last two games of the season, while playing with Charlie Burns and Tom McCarthy, and finished his last NHL season with 4 goals and 14 points. The Bruins finished in last place for only the second time in franchise history when the Montreal Maroons topped them in both team's inaugural season 36 years before in 1924-25.

Final StandingsEdit

National Hockey League GP W L T GF GA Pts
Montreal Canadiens 70 41 19 10 254 188 92
Toronto Maple Leafs 70 39 19 12 234 176 90
Chicago Black Hawks 70 29 24 17 198 180 75
Detroit Red Wings 70 25 29 16 195 215 66
New York Rangers 70 22 38 10 204 248 54
Boston Bruins 70 15 42 13 176 254 43

Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against
Teams that qualified for the playoffs are highlighted in bold.

Game LogEdit

Regular Season Schedule
No. R Date Score Opponent Record
1LOctober 5, 19601–2 @ New York Rangers (1960–61) 0–1–0
2TOctober 8, 19601–1 @ Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 0–1–1
3TOctober 9, 19604–4 Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 0–1–2
4TOctober 11, 19603–3 Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 0–1–3
5TOctober 15, 19601–1 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 0–1–4
6LOctober 16, 19602–5 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 0–2–4
7LOctober 20, 19600–5 @ Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 0–3–4
8TOctober 23, 19602–2 Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 0–3–5
9WOctober 27, 19606–4 New York Rangers (1960–61) 1–3–5
10LOctober 29, 19602–3 @ Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 1–4–5
11WOctober 30, 19605–3 Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 2–4–5
12TNovember 2, 19602–2 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 2–4–6
13LNovember 3, 19605–8 @ Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 2–5–6
14WNovember 6, 19604–0 Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 3–5–6
15LNovember 10, 19601–4 Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 3–6–6
16LNovember 13, 19602–4 Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 3–7–6
17LNovember 16, 19603–4 @ New York Rangers (1960–61) 3–8–6
18LNovember 17, 19602–4 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 3–9–6
19WNovember 19, 19606–4 Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 4–9–6
20LNovember 20, 19602–3 Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 4–10–6
21LNovember 23, 19603–6 @ New York Rangers (1960–61) 4–11–6
22LNovember 24, 19603–5 New York Rangers (1960–61) 4–12–6
23LNovember 27, 19600–3 Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 4–13–6
24TNovember 30, 19602–2 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 4–13–7
25WDecember 1, 19603–2 @ Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 5–13–7
26LDecember 3, 19601–3 @ Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 5–14–7
27LDecember 4, 19602–5 Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 5–15–7
28WDecember 8, 19605–1 Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 6–15–7
29LDecember 10, 19600–3 New York Rangers (1960–61) 6–16–7
30TDecember 11, 19602–2 @ New York Rangers (1960–61) 6–16–8
31TDecember 17, 19603–3 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 6–16–9
32LDecember 18, 19602–4 Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 6–17–9
33WDecember 22, 19604–2 Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 7–17–9
34LDecember 25, 19601–4 Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 7–18–9
35LDecember 28, 19603–4 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 7–19–9
36LDecember 31, 19601–3 @ Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 7–20–9
37WJanuary 1, 19613–2 Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 8–20–9
38LJanuary 5, 19613–4 Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 8–21–9
39LJanuary 7, 19611–4 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 8–22–9
40LJanuary 8, 19613–5 @ Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 8–23–9
41TJanuary 12, 19614–4 New York Rangers (1960–61) 8–23–10
42LJanuary 14, 19610–4 @ Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 8–24–10
43LJanuary 15, 19614–6 Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 8–25–10
44WJanuary 19, 19614–2 Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 9–25–10
45WJanuary 21, 19613–1 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 10–25–10
46LJanuary 22, 19613–8 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 10–26–10
47LJanuary 25, 19611–2 @ New York Rangers (1960–61) 10–27–10
48WJanuary 26, 19615–4 Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 11–27–10
49LJanuary 29, 19611–3 Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 11–28–10
50TFebruary 2, 19612–2 Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 11–28–11
51LFebruary 4, 19611–2 New York Rangers (1960–61) 11–29–11
52LFebruary 5, 19612–5 @ New York Rangers (1960–61) 11–30–11
53LFebruary 9, 19611–5 Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 11–31–11
54LFebruary 11, 19613–6 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 11–32–11
55WFebruary 12, 19618–3 New York Rangers (1960–61) 12–32–11
56LFebruary 16, 19611–9 @ Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 12–33–11
57LFebruary 18, 19611–5 @ Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 12–34–11
58TFebruary 19, 19612–2 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 12–34–12
59TFebruary 23, 19613–3 @ Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 12–34–13
60LFebruary 26, 19612–7 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 12–35–13
61LMarch 1, 19611–3 @ New York Rangers (1960–61) 12–36–13
62WMarch 2, 19614–2 Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 13–36–13
63LMarch 5, 19611–2 Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 13–37–13
64LMarch 7, 19611–3 @ Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 13–38–13
65LMarch 9, 19612–5 Detroit Red Wings (1960–61) 13–39–13
66LMarch 11, 19615–7 @ Montreal Canadiens (1960–61) 13–40–13
67LMarch 12, 19610–5 Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 13–41–13
68WMarch 15, 19616–2 New York Rangers (1960–61) 14–41–13
69LMarch 18, 19612–6 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1960–61) 14–42–13
70WMarch 19, 19614–3 Chicago Black Hawks (1960–61) 15–42–13

PlayoffsEdit

  • The Bruins did not qualify for the post season.

Player StatsEdit

Regular SeasonEdit

Scoring
# Player Pos GP G A Pts PIM
21 Toppazzini, JerryJerry Toppazzini RW 67 15 35 50 35
17 McKenney, DonDon McKenney C 68 26 23 49 22
10 Burns, CharlieCharlie Burns C 62 15 26 41 16
9 Bucyk, JohnJohn Bucyk LW 70 19 20 39 48
19 Mohns, DougDoug Mohns LW/D 65 12 21 33 63
6 Horvath, BroncoBronco Horvath C 47 15 15 30 15
7 Stasiuk, VicVic Stasiuk LW 46 5 25 30 35
24 Bartlett, JimJim Bartlett LW 63 15 9 24 95
20 Boivin, LeoLeo Boivin D 57 6 17 23 50
23 Pronovost, AndreAndre Pronovost LW 47 11 11 22 30
16 Labine, LeoLeo Labine RW 40 7 12 19 34
16 Oliver, MurrayMurray Oliver C 21 6 10 16 8
22, 25 O'Ree, WillieWillie O'Ree W 43 4 10 14 26
14 Flaman, FernFern Flaman D 62 2 9 11 59
8 Smith, DallasDallas Smith D 70 1 9 10 79
4 Armstrong, BobBob Armstrong D 54 0 10 10 72
12 Ouellette, GerryGerry Ouellette RW 34 5 4 9 0
25 McCarthy, TomTom McCarthy LW 24 4 5 9 0
11 Erickson, AutAut Erickson D 68 2 6 8 65
23 Gendron, Jean-GuyJean-Guy Gendron LW 13 1 7 8 24
18 Tessier, OrvalOrval Tessier C 32 3 4 7 0
7 Aldcorn, GaryGary Aldcorn LW 21 2 3 5 12
22 Meissner, DickDick Meissner RW 9 0 1 1 2
25 Green, TedTed Green D 1 0 0 0 2
12 Chisholm, ArtArt Chisholm C/D 3 0 0 0 0
12 Carter, BillyBilly Carter C 8 0 0 0 2
1 Simmons, DonDon Simmons G 18 0 0 0 6
1 Gamble, BruceBruce Gamble G 52 0 0 0 14
Goaltending
Player MIN GP W L T GA GAA SO
Gamble, BruceBruce Gamble 3120 52 12 33 7 193 3.71 0
Simmons, DonDon Simmons 1079 18 3 9 6 58 3.23 1
Toppazzini, JerryJerry Toppazzini 1 1 0 0 0 0 0.00 0
Team: 4200 70 15 42 13 251 3.59 1

[2]

Note: Pos = Position; GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; PIM = Penalty minutes; PPG = Power-play goals; SHG = Short-handed goals; GWG = Game-winning goals

MIN = Minutes played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; GA = Goals-against; GAA = Goals-against average; SO = Shutouts

Awards and RecordsEdit

  • The Bruins did not receive any awards this season.

TransactionsEdit

TriviaEdit

GalleryEdit

See AlsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

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