Today in Boston Bruins History: September 19

Ed Westfall hockey card from his time with Boston. Photo from bleedingblackandgold.wordpress.com

Boston Bruins history for September 19:

1921: Jack McGill (full name John George McGill) was born in Edmonton, Alberta. Playing in the 1940s for the Bruins, McGill got off to a huge start, registering 19 points in his first 13 games. After that, though, and after spending time playing for teams in the Canadian military during World War II, he returned to the Bruins and never had an explosion like those 19 points in 13 games again. He did, however, spend some time in the minors with Providence and other teams. He died in 1994.

1940: Ed Westfall (full name Edward Vernon Westfall) is born in Belleville, Ontario. He played for the Bruins for a total of 11 seasons starting in 1961, though it took him some time to find out where he fit in on the roster and what role he could play. Once he found it, though, he got it: from 1966 to 1972, he always registered at least 36 points for the season. His career-high 59 point regular season campaign was in 1970-71, fresh off the Bruins’ 1970 Stanley Cup championship, in which he played a very important role–he was on the ice when Bobby Orr ended it and sealed the Cup victory with that famous flying goal.

Westfall also contributed to the fastest three goals scored in league history by putting away the second of three goals to come in 20 seconds against the Vancouver Canucks in 1971. He was well-known on the penalty kill and named to the All-Star Game four times (1971, 1973, 1974, 1975). Selected by the then-new New York Islanders in the 1972 Expansion Draft, he left the Bruins behind and became the Isles’ first-ever captain, scoring the first goal in franchise history, leading the team to their first-ever playoff and Final appearance in 1975. He won the Masterton Trophy in 1977 and retired in 1979 after having played more than 1,200 games. Upon his retirement, he took up broadcasting, becoming part of the Islanders’ team with Jiggs McDonald, who referred to him as 18, his sweater number. This continued until 1998. November 2011 saw a special evening for him: Ed Westfall Night and his induction to the Islanders Hall of Fame. Plus, he and McDonald reunited to call the second period of that night’s game: a match between the Islanders and the Bruins.

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