Newsy Lalonde
Newsy Lalonde.jpg
Position Forward, Center
5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
168 lb (76 kg)
Teams Montreal Canadiens
Renfrew Hockey Club
New York Americans
Nationality Flag of Canada Canadian
Born Octiber 31,1887,
Cornwall, ON, CAN
Died November 21,1970 (age 83),
Montreal, QC, CAN
Pro Career 1904 – 1927
Hall of Fame, 1950

Edouard "Newsy" Lalonde (October 31, 1887, Cornwall, Ontario – November 21, 1970) was a Canadian professional forward in the National Hockey League (NHL). He played for the Montreal Canadiens -- considered to be the original "Flying Frenchman" -- in the National Hockey Association and the NHL. He also played for the WCHL's Saskatoon Sheiks. Before playing professional ice hockey, he worked in a newspaper plant, where he acquired the "Newsy" moniker.

Early hockey career[edit | edit source]

In the 1904, Lalonde started his career with the Cornwall Hockey Club of the Federal Amateur Hockey League (FAHL). In 1905, he played for the Woodstock club of the Ontario Hockey Association Senior A League. Lalonde made the trek to Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario in 1906 to play in the International Professional Hockey League, hockey's first known professional league. In his one season in the Sault, he was named to the IHL Second All-Star Team. In 1907, Lalonde signed with the Toronto Professionals of the Ontario Professional Hockey League, and with linemates Bruce Ridpath and Wally Mercer led the "Torontos" to the league championship, losing the Stanley Cup in a tight match with the Montreal Wanderers in which Lalonde scored twice.

1910 saw the foundation of the National Hockey Association (NHA), precursor to the NHL, and Lalonde joined the Montreal Canadiens for their first season and indeed Lalonde scored the first-ever goal for the Montreal Canadiens. Halfway through the season, the Habs traded him to the Renfrew Creamery Kings, with whom Newsy led the league in scoring. He rejoined the Canadiens for the 1911 season -- professional hockey was only then developing any sense of teams retaining the rights to their players -- during which he had several stick battles and provoked the ire of opposing fans.

With the formation of the Pacific Coast Hockey Association (PCHA) in 1912, Lalonde jumped to the Vancouver Millionaires, and promptly led the league in scoring its inaugural year. Vancouver traded him back to Montreal the following season for Didier Pitre. In 1915, Lalonde held out in contract negotiations, only playing six games, but aside from that, he remained with the Canadiens for the next ten years, winning the NHA scoring title again in 1916 and captaining the Canadiens to his only Stanley Cup victory.

NHL/WCHL career[edit | edit source]

Newsy Lalonde played (and scored) in the first-ever NHL game on December 19th, 1917, when the Montreal Canadiens defeated the Ottawa Senators, 7–4. He would score in each of the first six NHL games, earning a share of an NHL record with Cy Denneny and Joe Malone to establish an NHL record that would go unmatched for nearly 90 years. (The record was tied by Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins on November 1, 2006.)

During the 1919 Stanley Cup playoffs, Lalonde scored a spectacular seventeen goals in ten games. However, the series was cancelled after five games, due to the 1919 Flu Epidemic. The final game was never played, because Joe Hall, Manager Kennedy, Billy Coutu, Jack McDonald, Louis Berlinquette and Lalonde were hospitalized with influenza, leading the Cup trustees to call off the series. Joe Hall did not survive.

There after Lalonde had two fine years, but after the sale of the Canadiens to Leo Dandurand, his clashes with the new ownership affected his play to the point where he left the team for four games, and he was relegated to reserve duty amidst the boos of the fans. Accordingly, Dandurand sold Lalonde to Saskatoon the following year in violation of the waiver regulations then in force. The deal was disputed, and eventually -- and grudgingly -- the Canadiens accepted the amateur Aurel Joliat in compensation. ( When Lalonde and Joliat met later that season, Lalonde,unhappy that Joliat was fast becoming a fan favorite in Montreal, got his "revenge" by serving Joliat with a vicious crosscheck to the face. )

On a line with future Hall of Famer Bill Cook, Lalonde achieved his final scoring title as playing coach of the Sheiks, although the team had a poor overall record. The next two seasons the team was much improved, but Lalonde himself was finally feeling his age and was no longer an impact player. He scored the final goal of his career on March 2, 1925, against Vancouver. The following season he played three regular season games and two playoff games, the last for the Saskatoon franchise before the Western Hockey League folded.

The following season, 1927, Lalonde was named the head coach of the New York Americans. He played as a substitute for one final game in November 1926 before hanging up his skates for good. After his retirement, he also served as the head coach of the Ottawa Senators between 1929 and 1931, and of the Canadiens between 1932 and 1935.

Assessment[edit | edit source]

A leading scorer for the Canadiens in six years, he served as captain from 1915 to 1921. He was a member of the first Montreal Canadiens team to win the Stanley Cup in 1916. He was scoring champion seven times in the National Hockey Association, Pacific Coast Hockey Association, National Hockey League and Western Hockey League, an unprecedented feat in the major professional ranks and unsurpassed until Wayne Gretzky's tenth scoring title in 1994. From 1910 to 1954, he held the record for the most goals scored by a major league hockey player, including his pre-NHL totals -- 455 goals, a record later broken by Maurice Richard. On a more personal level, he was said to have been one of the meanest players of his time; hated by opposition players and even by some of his teammates. As a coach, he once punched one of his players who tried to stand up to him, as a warning to the team, that he wouldn't take any talk-back.

He was also elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1950, the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 1965, and the Sports Hall of Fame of Canada. He had lit the torch when the Sports Hall of Fame opened in Toronto in August, 1955.

In 1998 he was ranked number 32 on the List of 100 greatest hockey players by The Hockey News, making him the highest-ranking player on the list who had played in a professional league before the founding of the NHL.

Hockey Career Statistics[edit | edit source]

    Regular Season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1909–10 Montreal Canadiens NHA 6 16 0 16 40 -- -- -- -- --
1909–10 Renfrew Millionaires NHA 5 22 0 22 16 -- -- -- -- --
1910–11 Montreal Canadiens NHA 16 19 0 19 63 -- -- -- -- --
1911–12 Vancouver Millionaires PCHA 15 27 0 27 51 -- -- -- -- --
1912–13 Montreal Canadiens NHA 18 28 7 35 61 -- -- -- -- --
1913–14 Montreal Canadiens NHA 18 25 0 25 61 2 0 0 0 2
1914–15 Montreal Canadiens NHA 7 4 3 7 17 -- -- -- -- --
1915–16 Montreal Canadiens NHA 24 28 6 34 78 4 3 0 3 41
1916–17 Montreal Canadiens NHA 18 28 7 35 61 5 2 0 2 47
1917–18 Montreal Canadiens NHL 14 23 0 23 16 2 4 2 6 17
1918–19 Montreal Canadiens NHL 17 22 10 32 40 5 11 2 13 15
1919–20 Montreal Canadiens NHL 23 37 9 46 34 -- -- -- -- --
1920–21 Montreal Canadiens NHL 24 33 10 43 36 -- -- -- -- --
1921–22 Montreal Canadiens NHL 20 9 5 14 20 -- -- -- -- --
1922–23 Saskatoon Crescents WCHL 29 30 4 34 44 -- -- -- -- --
1923–24 Saskatoon Crescents WCHL 21 10 10 20 24 -- -- -- -- --
1924–25 Saskatoon Sheiks WCHL 22 8 6 14 42 2 0 0 0 4
1925–26 Saskatoon Sheiks WCHL 3 0 0 0 2 2 0 0 0 2
1926–27 New York Americans NHL 1 0 0 0 2 -- -- -- -- --
1927–28 Quebec Beavers CAHL 1 0 0 0 0 -- -- -- -- --
NHL Totals 98 124 34 158 138 7 15 4 19 32

External links[edit | edit source]

Preceded by
Dave Gill
Head Coach of the Ottawa Senators (Original)
Succeeded by
Cy Denneny
Preceded by
Cecil Hart
Head Coach of the Montreal Canadiens
Succeeded by
Sylvio Mantha
Preceded by
Joe Malone
NHL Scoring Champion
Succeeded by
Punch Broadbent
Preceded by
Joe Malone
NHL Scoring Champion
Succeeded by
Joe Malone
Preceded by
Jimmy Gardner
Head Coach of the Montreal Canadiens
Succeeded by
Leo Dandurand
Preceded by
Howard McNamara
Montreal Canadiens captains
Succeeded by
Sprague Cleghorn
Preceded by
Jack Laviolette
Montreal Canadiens captains
Succeeded by
Jimmy Gardner
Preceded by
Jack Laviolette
Montreal Canadiens captains
Succeeded by
Jack Laviolette
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