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Honoured Member of the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame

Gord Lane

Gordon Thomas Lawrence Lane

  • Born: March 31, 1953 in Brandon, Manitoba
  • Hometown: Brandon, Manitoba
  • Position: Defense & Coach

Selected by Pittsburgh Penguins 9th round (#134) in 1973 NHL Amateur Draft

Gordie Lane was not the biggest defenseman around, but he sure played as if he was. He was an aggressive defensive defenseman who made quite the name for himself in junior with his hometown Brandon Wheat Kings, as well as in one season with the New Westminster Bruins. It was easy for the scouts to see that in Lane they would be getting a stay-at-home, stay-in-your face defender who could play a very bellicose brand of hockey.

The Pittsburgh Penguins drafted him 134th overall in the 1973 Entry Draft, but he never signed with the club. Instead, he became a minor-league brawler in the IHL with the Fort Wayne Comets and the Dayton Gems - not an enviable job in the 1970s. It was even less-enviable when the Fort Wayne fans took a disliking to him and created a "We Hate Gordie Lane" fan club. On top of it all, Lane had to deal with a stuttering speech impediment. The Comets released him because, by his own admission, he could fight but do little else on the ice.

But Lane was also a fighter from within. He refused to give up on his dream to play in the NHL. In 1976, he signed as a free agent with the lowly Washington Capitals. Amazingly he went from minor league nobody into a NHL regular. Over the next four seasons he introduced himself to every forward in the league with his hard hitting, abrasive play. He was not a true heavyweight but he was a no non-sense, hard hitting player. Perhaps it was because the Capitals were so bad at this time but not too many people noticed that he was developing into more than a bruiser. If he stayed within his limitations he could provide solid minutes at the NHL level.

Bill Torrey, Al Arbour and the New York Islanders recognized this and traded for him prior to Christmas 1979. Talk about a great early Christmas gift - Lane went from a bottom feeder to the exciting Islanders just in time to help them win four consecutive Stanley Cup championships. He had transitioned into a solid depth defenseman and leader. Forming an effective tandem with Ken Morrow in the early days allowed the Islanders to trade forward Billy Harris and defenseman Dave Lewis to the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for Butch Goring - the final piece of the championship puzzle in New York. Lane was credited as being the team's most effective defender during the era.

Gord Lane with Stanley Cup

The highlight of his career winning that first Stanley Cup

Career StatisticsEdit

PlayingEdit

    Regular Season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1970-71 Brandon Wheat Kings WCHL 20 0 4 4 53 -- -- -- -- --
1971-72 Brandon Wheat Kings WCHL 63 7 16 23 106 11 1 2 3 19
1972-73 New Westminster Bruins WCHL 36 2 13 15 115 5 0 0 0 29
1973-74 Fort Wayne Komets IHL 67 1 14 15 214 4 0 1 1 27
1974-75 Dayton Gems IHL 50 6 10 16 225 14 1 2 4 31
1975-76 Washington Capitals NHL 3 1 0 1 12 -- -- -- -- --
Hampton Gulls SHL 12 1 7 8 58 -- -- -- -- --
Dayton Gems IHL 55 12 22 34 227 15 0 11 11 85
1976-77 Washington Capitals NHL 80 2 15 17 207 -- -- -- -- --
1977-78 Washington Capitals NHL 69 2 9 11 195 -- -- -- -- --
Hershey Bears AHL 4 0 1 1 8 -- -- -- -- --
1978-79 Washington Capitals NHL 64 3 15 18 147 -- -- -- -- --
Hershey Bears AHL 5 0 1 1 48 -- -- -- -- --
1979-80 Washington Capitals NHL 19 2 4 6 53 -- -- -- -- --
New York Islanders NHL 55 2 14 16 152 21 1 3 4 85
1980-81 New York Islanders NHL 60 3 9 12 124 12 1 5 6 32
1981-82 New York Islanders NHL 51 0 3 3 98 19 0 4 4 61
1982-83 New York Islanders NHL 44 3 4 7 87 18 1 2 3 32
1983-84 New York Islanders NHL 38 0 3 3 70 4 0 0 0 2
1984-85 New York Islanders NHL 57 1 8 9 83 1 0 0 0 2
1986-87 Springfield Indians AHL 62 2 6 8 117 -- -- -- -- --
NHL Totals 540 19 94 113 1228 75 3 14 17 214

CoachingEdit

    Regular Season   Playoffs
Season Team League Type GP W L T OTL Pts Finish GP W L Results
1985-86 Brandon Wheat Kings WHL Head 38 10 27 1 - 21 7th East DNQ
1986-87 Springfield Indians AHL Assist 80 34 40 6 - 74 6th South DNQ
1987-88 Springfield Indians AHL Head 80 27 44 8 1 63 7th North DNQ

Awards & Achievements Edit

External linksEdit

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