He joined the St Michaels Majors in 1943. He won the Memorial Cup twice. The first time was in 1943-44 when he was picked up by the Oshawa Generals, Mortson also won it the next year. 1944-45. with the Majors.
He graduated from the St. Mike's Majors of the OHA in 1945. He turned pro the following year and joined the Tulsa Oilers of the USHL to serve the customary apprenticeship of the day. But the following year, Leafs' GM Conn Smythe launched a rebuilding campaign on behalf of his club. He brought names like Howie Meeker, Gaye Stewart, Gus Bodnar, and Joe Klukay into the fold. He also elected to take a chance with a couple of young defenders, Jimmy Thomson and Mortson. The two caught on, Thompson the stay-at-home defender and Mortson the flashier, whirling rusher who had a nose for trouble and abrasive play. The two became known as "The Gold Dust Twins."
Over the six years that followed, the "Twins" served as a defensive foundation during a great run for the Leafs as they captured Stanley Cup victories in 1947, 1948, 1949, and 1951. In 1952, however, the Leafs were in need of a first-string goaltender. They managed to pry Harry Lumley away from the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for Cal Gardner, Al Rollins and Mortson.
In the Windy City, Mortson continued his rough-house ways, lasting with the club for a total of six campaigns. By the close 1956-57 season, his villainy was confirmed as he led the league in penalty minutes for the fourth time in his career. In 1958, he was traded to his arch rivals, the Detroit Red Wings, where he concluded his NHL career at the end of the season.
Afterwards, he embarked on a lengthy minor-league stint with stops in Buffalo, Chatham, and Oakville. He retired in 1966.
An incredible video featuring the 1951 off-season activities of 15 NHL players in the days when most worked during the summer. Brief, excellent game footage of each is shown. Players featured are Ted Lindsay, Johnny Peirson, Bill Mosienko, Bill Gadsby, Bill Juzda, Leo Reise, Jack Gelineau, Edgar Laprade, Doug and Max Bentley, Chuck Rayner, Gus Mortson, Pentti Lund, Glen Harmon, Elmer Lach.
|Chicago Black Hawks Captains