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December 09, 2013

Hockey Card Of The Day: Pete Peeters

I don't exactly know why, but I absolutely love this ratty old Pete Peeters card.

As a youngster I instantly took a liking to goaltender Peter Peeters. Initially it had to be the name that attracted me took him, but his play quickly made him a long time favorite.

Peeters is the the son of Dutch immigrants, and grew up as a competitive swimmer while tending to the nets on the side. In fact, it was not until he was 18 years old that he committed to major junior hockey, joining a weak Medicine Hat Tigers squad for two years starting in 1975.

With a porous defense in front of him, Pete Peeters was peppered with pucks. But this pickle that Peeters picked turned out to be a perfect training ground. The huge workload and respectable showing earned him high praise from scouts. In 1977 he was selected 135th overall by the Philadelphia Flyers in the NHL Amateur draft.

After two years apprenticing in the American Hockey League, winning the Hap Holmes trophy as top goalie along the way, Peeters was promoted to the Flyers for the 1979-80 season, sharing the nets with Phil Myre.

The Flyers must have thought they had the second coming of Bernie Parent based on the way Peeters started that year. He went 22-0-5 before losing his first game of the season on February 19th! Of course that was the year the Flyers went 35 straight games without a loss, and partner Myre picked up some wins during that streak as well. Peeters finished the year with a record of 29-5-5 with a 2.73 GAA, earning him an All Star game nod. He was the Flyers go to guy in the playoffs as well, leading the Flyers all the way to Stanley Cup finals, only to lose on an over time goal courtesy of the New York Islanders' Bob Nystrom.

Here's the full Pete Peeters story.

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