Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Henry Boucha
Centre Henry Boucha was a fine scorer and penalty killer whose career was adversely affected by an eye injury. He was a fine international player for the U.S. before making a smooth transition to the North American pro game.

Boucha spent the 1969-70 season with the WCJHL's Winnipeg Jets. The next year he committed himself to the U.S. national team which afforded him a chance to play at the 1971 World Championships and 1972 Sapporo Olympics. In the meantime, he was selected 16th overall by the Detroit Red Wings at the 1971 Amateur Draft. Following the Americans' silver medal performance, the young pivot joined the Wings for the last 16 games of the 1971-72 schedule.

Boucha and his trademark headband were popular figures in Detroit over the next two seasons. He formed a solid line with Red Berenson and Bill Collins and sometimes worked well with speedy Pierre Jarry. During a game at Montreal in 1973, Boucha tied the NHL mark for the second fastest goal from the start of a game by scoring at the six second mark of the first period. In August 1974, Detroit sent the versatile forward to the Minnesota North Stars for sharp-shooter Danny Grant. Boucha was enjoying a solid year when he was involved in an ugly stick-swinging incident with Boston's Dave Forbes which left him with a cracked bone around his eye and blurred vision. He was never the same after the trauma of the injury and the subsequent court case when the State of Minnesota attempted to charge the Boston player with assault.

The clever centre sought a change of scenery with the Minnesota Fighting Saints of the WHA in 1975-76. He joined the NHL's Kansas City Scouts for the last part of the season and remained with the franchise when it relocated to Colorado in 1976-77. Boucha retired nine games into that season as his effectiveness had diminished. His contribution as an American player was acknowledged with his election to the United States Hockey Hall of Fame in 1995.


REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1965-66 Warroad Warriors High-MN
1966-67 Warroad Warriors High-MN
1967-68 Warroad Warriors High-MN
1968-69 Warroad Warriors High-MN 25 60 35 95
1969-70 Winnipeg Jets WCJHL 51 27 26 53 37 14 6 3 9 37
1969-70 United States Nat-Tm 6 0 2 2 4
1969-70 United States WEC-B 7 4 1 5 4
1970-71 United States Nat-Tm 49 30 27 57 12
1970-71 United States WEC-A 10 7 1 8 2
1971-72 United States Nat-Tm 53 39 56 95 82
1971-72 United States Olympics 6 2 4 6 6
1971-72 Detroit Red Wings NHL 16 1 0 1 2 -3
1972-73 Detroit Red Wings NHL 73 14 14 28 82 -2
1972-73 Virginia Wings AHL 7 3 2 5 9
1973-74 Detroit Red Wings NHL 70 19 12 31 32 -22
1974-75 Minnesota North Stars NHL 51 15 14 29 23 -12
1975-76 Minnesota Fighting Saints WHA 36 15 20 35 47
1975-76 Kansas City Scouts NHL 28 4 7 11 14 -13
1976-77 Colorado Rockies NHL 9 0 2 2 4 0
NHL Totals 247 53 49 102 157


Selected by Minnesota (WHA) in 1972 WHA General Player Draft, February 12, 1972. Traded to Minnesota by Detroit for Danny Grant, August 27, 1974.
Suffered eventual career-ending eye injury in game vs. Boston, January 4, 1975. Signed as a free agent by Minnesota (WHA), June 6, 1975. Rights traded to Kansas City by Minnesota for Kansas City's 2nd round choice (Steve Christoff) in 1978 Amateur Draft, December 9, 1975. Transferred to Colorado after Kansas City franchise relocated, July 15, 1976.