Thread: MLD 2011 Bios
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07-28-2011, 09:23 PM
Selfish Man
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With pick #231, the Pittsburgh Hornets select Al MacNeil, coach.

Won a Stanley Cup and three Calder Cups as a head coach within the Montreal organization and two more as Director of Player Personnel. Then coached the underdog Flames to the Wales Conference Finals as head coach in 1981 before winning a fourth Stanley Cup with Calgary in 1989 as Assistant General Manager.

Career NHL 306 games 138-113-55 .541 Playoffs 43 games 22-21-0 .512

Originally Posted by
Following an 11-year playing career in the NHL, Al MacNeil became the Canadiens’ coach in 1971 as a mid-season replacement for Claude Ruel.

When MacNeil took over behind the bench, the team appeared to be on its way to missing the playoffs for a second straight year.

MacNeil managed to turn things around, though, and with the help of players such as Jean Beliveau, Yvan Cournoyer and Jean-Claude Tremblay, he got the Canadiens back on track in the second half and the team finished the regular season with 42 wins and a playoff berth.

Going against convention and counsel, McNeil called on rookie goalie Ken Dryden to defend the team’s net at the outset of the playoffs. His gamble paid off as the Canadiens beat Boston, Minnesota and Chicago to claim the Stanley Cup for the 17th time in team history.

Unfortunately, MacNeil developed a stormy relationship with veteran star Henri Richard during his tenure in Montreal that ultimately cost him his job at the end of the season.
Originally Posted by wikipedia
Crucial to the Stanley Cup victory was MacNeil's decision to use rookie goaltender Ken Dryden in the playoffs despite Dryden having played only six regular-season games in 1970–71. MacNeil was presumably impressed that Dryden won all these games, allowing only nine goals (1.65 GAA). Another crucial choice was having rookie Rejean Houle mark the Black Hawks' goalscorer Bobby Hull. Houle was nicknamed the "shadow of Bobby Hull" as Hull managed to score only one even-strength goal in the series.

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