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Paul Henderson (born January 28, 1943 in Kincardine, Ontario) (hometown - Lucknow, Ontario) is a retired Canadian hockey left winger who played 13 seasons in the National Hockey League for the Detroit Red Wings, Toronto Maple Leafs and Atlanta Flames. He is best known for scoring the winning goals in the last three games of the 1972 Summit Series against the USSR, the final one winning the series for Canada.

Henderson presently works in various ministries affiliated with Campus Crusade for Christ.

Playing careerEdit

Henderson played left wing in various professional leagues in North America, as well as for Team Canada in international competitions. Henderson is best known for scoring hockey's most famous goal (a.k.a. the Goal of the Century), helping Team Canada clinch the 1972 Summit Series against the Soviet Union with only 34 seconds left in the final game.

Henderson started his junior career with the Goderich Sailors of the Western Jr. 'B' Hockey League. He took them into the playoffs, before being eliminated by the Sarnia Legionnaires. After that, he played with the Hamilton Red Wings of the OHA from 1960 to 1963. He would help lead Hamilton to the Memorial Cup title in 1962.

Henderson played 13 seasons in the NHL. He began his career in 1962 with the Detroit Red Wings, staying there until 1968 (with the exception of the 1963 season, when he played for the Pittsburgh Hornets of the AHL). He was traded by Detroit with Norm Ullman and Floyd Smith to the Toronto Maple Leafs for Frank Mahovlich, Garry Unger, Pete Stemkowski and the contract rights to Carl Brewer on March 3, 1968.

He was among the NHL players selected to compete against the USSR in the 1972 Summit Series. He became famous in Canada after scoring the winning goals in the final three games of the eight-game series, securing the Canadian victory. He also played for Canada in the 1974 Summit Series in which Canadian WHA players were pitted against the Soviet team.

In 1974, Henderson left the Maple Leafs and the NHL altogether, jumping to the rival WHA where he played for the Toronto Toros. He remained with the Toros franchise after its relocation to Birmingham, Alabama and re-named the Birmingham Bulls. He stayed with the team when it transferred to the CHL in 1979.

He returned to the NHL in 1980 for one final season, playing for the Atlanta Flames. The following season he returned to the CHL's Birmingham Bulls and retired in 1981.

Hockey Hall of FameEdit

Henderson has not been inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame, and there is much debateTemplate:Fact over his omission. He scored one of the most famousTemplate:Fact goals in hockey and Canadian sports history when he scored the winning goal in the deciding game eight of the 1972 Summit Series between Canada and the Soviet Union. If Henderson was inducted, it would be due almost entirely to the historical significance of that goalTemplate:Fact (plus his game-winners in games six and seven as well). Although his NHL numbers were respectableTemplate:Fact (236 goals and 477 points in 707 career NHL games), they are not close to the levels of those generally selected for induction.Template:Fact His candidacy has led to many debatesTemplate:Fact among hockey fans, because although his performance in the Summit Series made him one of the most well known names in hockey, many fansTemplate:Fact feel that it is not right to honour a player's entire career because of one highlight. However the Hall of Fame is not controlled by the NHL nor is it officially connected with it, so his play in the WHA would be relevant.

During a press conference on the 30th anniversary celebrations of the series in 2002, Henderson criticized former linemate Bobby Clarke for his slash on Valeri Kharlamov's ankle, which neutralized the Soviet star for the rest of the series, dubbing the move "the lowpoint of the series". Clarke responded that Henderson had made his career entirely on the historical significance of the series-winning goal, and that Henderson would have remained an unknown if he had not scored this goal. Clarke went on to say "I think it's improper to criticize a teammate 30 years later. If it was so offensive, why didn't he bother to say something after the game?" Henderson has since retracted his criticism.[1]

AwardsEdit

RecordsEdit

Career statistics Edit

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1960–61 Hamilton Red Wings OHA 30 1 3 4 9 12 1 1 2 4
1961–62 Hamilton Red Wings OHA 50 24 19 43 68 10 4 6 10 13
1962–63 Hamilton Red Wings OHA 48 49 27 76 53 3 2 0 2 0
1962–63 Detroit Red Wings NHL 2 0 0 0 9
1963–64 Pittsburgh Hornets AHL 38 10 14 24 18
1963–64 Detroit Red Wings NHL 32 3 3 6 14 14 2 3 5 6
1964–65 Detroit Red Wings NHL 70 8 13 21 30 7 0 2 2 0
1965–66 Detroit Red Wings NHL 69 22 24 46 34 12 3 3 6 10
1966–67 Detroit Red Wings NHL 46 21 19 40 10
1967–68 Detroit Red Wings NHL 50 13 20 33 35
1967–68 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 13 5 6 11 8
1968–69 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 74 27 32 59 16 4 0 1 1 0
1969–70 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 67 20 22 42 18
1970–71 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 72 30 30 60 34 6 5 1 6 4
1971–72 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 73 38 19 57 32 5 1 2 3 6
1972–73 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 40 18 16 34 18
1973–74 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 69 24 31 55 40 4 0 2 2 2
1974–75 Toronto Toros WHA 58 30 33 63 18
1975–76 Toronto Toros WHA 65 26 29 55 22
1976–77 Birmingham Bulls WHA 81 23 25 48 30
1977–78 Birmingham Bulls WHA 80 37 29 66 22 5 1 1 2 0
1978–79 Birmingham Bulls WHA 76 24 27 51 20
1979–80 Birmingham Bulls CHL 47 17 18 35 10
1979–80 Atlanta Flames NHL 30 7 6 13 6 4 0 0 0 0
1980–81 Birmingham Bulls CHL 35 6 11 17 38
NHL totals 707 236 241 477 304 56 11 14 25 28
WHA totals 360 140 143 283 112 5 1 1 2 0

International playEdit

  • Played for Team Canada in the 1972 Summit Series.
  • Played for Team Canada in the 1974 Summit Series.
  • One of three players to have played for Team Canada in both Summit Series. The other two were Pat Stapleton and Frank Mahovlich.

International statistics

Year Team Event GP G A Pts PIM
1972 Canada Summit 8 7 3 10 4
1974 Canada Summit 7 2 1 3 0

ReferencesEdit

  1. Template:Cite news
  2. Graduation Service Heralds Milestone, Tyndale Connection (Fall 2007): 11.

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