And score another TWO for my Habs Numbers Project!
That's right, Gaston Gingras can account for both #2 and #29 in the project, so I don't have to look for expensive Doug Harvey (2) or Ken Dryden (29) cards or memorabilia.
A smooth skater with a hard slap shot, but not quite a Hall Of Famer, he had a hard time establishing himself on a stacked Habs team at first, and was traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs after parts of four seasons in which he still managed to score a point in every two games; after 109 games in two and a half seasons with the Leafs in which he was on the score sheet 57 times, he was dealt back to the Canadiens, who sent him to their AHL farm team, the Sherbrooke Canadiens. The team comprised of youngsters Patrick Roy, Claude Lemieux, Brian Skrudland and Stéphane Richer won the Calder Cup in 1984-85, and they all graduated to the main club the following season, helping the Habs to their 23rd Stanley Cup in 1986.
He would play another year in Montréal before getting traded to the St. Louis Blues two games into the 1987-88 season, and would also play with them the following year, before setting his sights on Europe as a player-coach, first in Switzerland, then Italy, before coming back and doing the same in North America, with the AHL's Fredericton Canadiens first, then the ECHL's Chesapeake Icebreakers.
He remains a teacher at heart to this day, hosting weekly hockey clinics in the Western part of Montréal (Louis Leblanc is an alum), in addition to his regular participation in NHL and Canadiens alumni games.
And so I wanted to pay tribute to all aspects of his career with the Canadiens when I made these custom Hell's Kitchen 2013-14 Series 2 cards, first with the B (checking the Chicago Blackhawks' Grant Mulvey hard into the boards in a fight while wearing the #2 sweater) variant of card #35 in the series on the left, then the A ''regular'' version, wearing #29 in an alumni pre-game skate, both with the Habs' classic red (then-away) uniform:
He also signed the two index cards I'd included to protect the cards: