Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- George Ferguson
Centre George Ferguson was a skilled playmaker who suited up for nearly 800 games in his career. He was equally comfortable in an offensive and defensive role and, at 195 lbs., he was not easily bumped off the puck.

Ferguson began his career with the OHA's Peterborough Petes in 1969-70. The next season he joined the Toronto Marlboros where he was a solid role player. Ferguson played a prominent role on the Marlies in 1971-72 with 92 points in 62 games. That summer he was claimed in the first round, 11th overall, by the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Amateur Draft. He signed with the Leafs despite a more lucrative offer from the Ottawa Nationals of the WHA.

Ferguson was moved directly into the NHL by the Maple Leafs in 1972-73 after the WHA raided their organization of several players. He scored 23 points in 72 games but spent most of the next season with the Oklahoma City Blazers of the CHL when the Leafs added more depth to their big league roster.

The talented pivot scored 49 points in 1974-75 as the third centre behind Dave Keon and Darryl Sittler. His most frequent wingers at this time were Errol Thompson and Lanny McDonald. After Keon left for WHA in 1975, Ferguson's defensive responsibilities became greater. His offense slipped noticeably, though, and Stan Weir then Darryl Sittler took over his spot between McDonald and Thompson. In 1976-77, the frustrated pivot missed two months of the season after suffering a serious knee injury. He was effective on his return and was teamed with Jim McKenny and Thompson, who was also a recent returnee from the injured list.

Ferguson was a role player for Toronto under new coach Roger Neilson's intricate system in 1977-78. During the post-season he scored five goals when the Maple Leafs reached the semi-finals for the first time since winning the Stanley Cup in 1967. Ferguson's high point came in the opening game of the post-season when he tied an NHL playoff record with three goals in one period in a 7-3 romp over the L.A. Kings.

On June 14, 1978, Ferguson and young defenceman Randy Carlyle were sent to the Pittsburgh Penguins for veteran blueliner Dave Burrows. "Fergie" reached the 20-goal mark four times with the Pens and often worked on one of the league's best power-plays with former Toronto teammates Carlyle and Rick Kehoe. He also scored the overtime winner when Pittsburgh eliminated Buffalo in the first round of the 1979 post-season. Early in the 1982-83 season he was traded to the Minnesota North Stars where he was a defensive role player with a penchant for scoring shorthanded goals. He retired in 1984 after helping the Stars reach the Stanley Cup semi-finals. Ferguson was particularly effective in the Norris Division final when he limited the impact of Chicago centre Denis Savard.


REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1968-69 Trenton Titans Minor-ON
1969-70 Oshawa Generals OHA-Jr. 49 19 21 40 20 6 2 2 4 2
1970-71 Oshawa Generals OHA-Jr. 8 2 0 2 19
1970-71 Toronto Marlboros OHA-Jr. 43 12 15 27 83 13 1 3 4 26
1971-72 Toronto Marlboros OHA-Jr. 62 36 56 92 104 10 3 8 11 22
1972-73 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 72 10 13 23 34 -17
1973-74 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 16 0 4 4 4 +1 3 0 1 1 2
1973-74 Oklahoma City Blazers CHL 35 16 33 49 21
1974-75 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 69 19 30 49 61 +5 7 1 0 1 7
1975-76 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 79 12 32 44 76 +11 10 2 4 6 2
1976-77 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 50 9 15 24 24 0 9 0 3 3 7
1977-78 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 73 7 16 23 37 -9 13 5 1 6 7
1978-79 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 80 21 29 50 37 +10 7 2 1 3 0
1979-80 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 73 21 28 49 36 0 5 0 3 3 4
1980-81 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 79 25 18 43 42 -30 5 2 6 8 9
1981-82 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 71 22 31 53 45 -6 5 0 1 1 0
1982-83 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 7 0 0 0 2 -7
1982-83 Minnesota North Stars NHL 65 8 12 20 14 -1 9 0 3 3 4
1983-84 Minnesota North Stars NHL 63 6 10 16 19 -6 13 2 0 2 2
NHL Totals 797 160 238 398 431 86 14 23 37 44


Traded to Pittsburgh by Toronto with Randy Carlyle for Dave Burrows, June 14, 1978. Traded to Minnesota by Pittsburgh with Pittsburgh's 1st round pick (Brian Lawton) in 1983 NHL Draft for Ron Meighan, Anders Hakansson and Minnesota's 1st round pick (Bob Errey) in 1983 NHL Draft, October 28, 1982.
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