Skip to main content

Harry Smith

We might as well finish our look at the Smith brothers from Ottawa. Hockey Hall of Famers Tommy and Alf had another brother who was a noted hockey player. No, he was never inducted into the Hall of Fame, though there is some suggestion he was every bit as good as his brothers. He just got himself into trouble a lot.

The original hockey history book The Trail of the Stanley Cup gives us a nice look at Harry Smith, the good:

He looked very much like his brother Alf and had a lot of his fighting characteristics. He was a much better player than Alf during his two years with Ottawa and might have been the equal of his brother Tommy, if he might have behaved.

In his first year with the Senators he was a ball of fire and he topped both Russell bowie and Frank McGee in scoring. He was a spectacular star in the famous two-game playoff with the Wanderers for the championship and Stanley Cup. Wanderers had won the first game 9-1 and no odds were quoted on the chances of Ottawa overtaking that lead. nevertheless, in the return match at Ottawa, the Senators tied the round before losing by two goals. This great comeback included five goals by Harry Smith who was personally congratulated at rinkside by the Governor General. This was the high point of Harry's career.

His talent was undeniable. The guy was a goal scoring machine. But his act wore thin. His attention to the defensive and team game was all but non-existent. He enjoyed a little too much of the night life, as the pudgy Smith was criticized for his lack of athletic conditioning. He was even released from Haileybury due to his lack of conditioning.

He was also physically undisciplined. He was suspended in Manitoba for rough play. In Pittsburgh he attacked a fan with his stick. Mind you, the fan did attack him with a chair. He even attacked a referee and that ended up in court.

But the man could score goals. He led four different leagues in goal scoring at one time or another. He also led everyone in playoff goal scoring in both 1906 and 1909 - both times he won the Stanley Cup.


Anonymous said…
Harry Smith was a superstar that team's in his era tried to sign...he was a goal scoring and fighting machine!

Absolutely afraid of no-one he was the equivalent of Sprague Cleghorn for toughness and had the scoring abilities of his brother Tommy.

For him to be denied entry into the Hockey Hall Of Fame when lesser talents enter before him is unacceptable!
Anonymous said…
One of the greatest players of his generation. Super tough a la Sprague Cleghorn (the ultimate tough guy) with the goal scoring abilities of his brother Tommy.

Harry belongs in the Hockey Hall Of Fame with his two brothers Alf and Tommy. Lesser talents are there ahead of him! SHAME!

Popular posts from this blog

100 Greatest Hockey Players Of All Time

What follows is a listing of the 100 greatest hockey players of all time, in my opinion. As discussed earlier, the definition of greatness is a very personalized endeavor and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
While there is no way of ever truly ranking the top 100 definitively, it is important for the creators of such lists to be open and transparent of how the came to their conclusions. That accountability allows the reader to better understand the process. 

Although admittedly I'm using a completely unscientific formula, I weigh career achievements (era statistics, awards, championships) and legacy (impact on and off ice, peak dominance) equally high. I rank player ability as the third most important ingredient, as first and foremost as a tie breaker. Hence, I'm not necessarily looking for the better player, as in text book definitions of what a hockey player should be, but for players with the greatest careers and greatest legacies. Therefore the best player is not n…

Top Ten Junior Players Of All Time

Let's take a look at the Top Ten junior players of all time. For the purposes of this list we will at players in the WHL, OHL and QMJHL only.

10. Pat Lafontaine, Verdun, QMJHL Rookie-record 104 goals, 234 points in 1982-83; major junior player of the year.

9. Denis Potvin, Ottawa, OHL 254 games, 95 goals, 234 assists, 329 points. Broke Bobby Orr's junior records.

8. John Tavares, Oshawa, OHL 215 goals, 433 points in 247 games; most goals in OHL history; eligibility rules changed to admit him at 15; 2006 major junior rookie of the year, 2007 major junior player of the year; two world juniors, named 2009 all-star, top forward and MVP.

7. Sidney Crosby, Rimouski, QMJHL 120 goals, 303 points in 121 games; two-time major junior player of the year; silver and gold with Canada at two world juniors.

6. Eric Lindros, Oshawa, OHL 97 goals, 216 points in 95 games; one Memorial Cup victory; three world junior tournaments; major junior player of the year in 1991.

5. Mike Bossy, Laval, Q…

Greatest Hockey Legends: M