April 26, 2015

Willie Brossart

A natural left winger for his youth and junior career, Willie Brossart was converted into a depth defenseman with three NHL teams in the early 1970s.

Mike Pelyk, a teammate of Willie's in Toronto, wasn't necessarily a fan, base on what he told celebrated hockey author Dave Bidini for his book "The Best Game You Can Name."

"We had a guy named Willie Brossart from Middle of Nowhere, Manitoba. He couldn't skate or shoot," said Pelyk.

Pelyk's assessment was rather harsh. After all Brossart did play parts of six NHL seasons, totalling 129 games. He only scored one goal and 15 points, but he was a defensive defenseman most nights. He did skate on left wing occasionally with his first team - the Philadelphia Flyers.

His most memorable NHL game likely came on November 27th, 1974. Then a member of the Washington Capitals, Brossart scored his first - and only - NHL goal in a game against the Minnesota North Stars. Later that game he badly broke his ankle and missed the rest of the season.

Brossart returned the following season and played 49 more games with the Capitals. He suffered another scary injury on January 24th, 1976 when he took Pittsburgh's Pierre Larouche's stick to the eye.

Though he recovered and played another season and a half in the minor leagues, that proved to Willie Brossart's last game in the NHL.

Brossart had a cousin, Ron Boehm, play in the NHL with the Oakland Seals.

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