Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Nick Harbaruk
Nick Harbaruk started his life in a hotly contested bit of land during a World War, and immigrated to Canada at the tender age of five with his family. He played junior hockey in Toronto, where his family had settled, eventually making his way into the pros in 1964-65.

After two games with the Rochester Americans, Nick went to Tulsa. He played four seasons with the Tulsa Oilers while attending the University of Tulsa. During the 1967-68 season, he played briefly for Vancouver, but soon returned to Tulsa, opting to put his university degree and his wife, an Oklahoma native, ahead of his professional hockey career.

It was a plan that paid off Harbaruk: he finished his degree and was later claimed by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 1969 Intra-League draft. When he entered the NHL, it was as one of only four players with a college degree. His academic credentials established, he devoted himself to becoming one of the hardest checking defensive forwards in the league.

Although he was never a high goal scorer, his style suited the Penguins, who were looking for some hard hitters. He played four seasons in Pittsburgh before being traded to St. Louis in October 1973. After a year with the Blues, he jumped to the WHA, citing the money he was being offered by the expansion Indianapolis Racers as his chief incentive. After three more seasons of professional hockey, he retired and became the coach of Seneca College. In his seven years behind the bench, he posted a 118-25-3 record, and won three Ontario College championships, as well as silver and a bronze medal in the Canadian finals.


REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1960-61 Toronto Marlboros OHA-Jr. 36 4 8 12 58
1961-62 Toronto Marlboros OHA-Jr. 31 7 10 17 56 12 6 5 11 38
1961-62 Pittsburgh Hornets AHL 1 0 0 0 0
1962-63 Toronto Marlboros OHA-Jr. 16 12 8 20 23
1963-64 Toronto Marlboros OHA-Jr. 54 15 25 40 71 9 2 2 4 9
1963-64 Toronto Marlboros M-Cup 11 5 4 9 15
1964-65 Rochester Americans AHL 2 0 0 0 0
1964-65 Tulsa Oilers CPHL 67 27 43 70 65 12 5 8 13 25
1965-66 Tulsa Oilers CPHL 70 20 46 66 97 11 1 4 5 10
1966-67 Tulsa Oilers CPHL 70 14 26 40 84
1967-68 Tulsa Oilers CPHL 54 20 30 50 96 11 1 6 7 14
1968-69 Vancouver Canucks WHL 3 1 1 2 2
1968-69 Tulsa Oilers CHL 69 26 19 45 89 7 2 5 7 18
1969-70 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 74 5 17 22 56 -7 10 3 0 3 20
1970-71 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 78 13 12 25 108 -9
1971-72 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 78 12 17 29 46 -13 4 0 1 1 0
1972-73 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 78 10 15 25 47 -11
1973-74 St. Louis Blues NHL 56 5 14 19 16 +4
1974-75 Indianapolis Racers WHA 78 20 23 43 52
1975-76 Indianapolis Racers WHA 76 23 19 42 24 7 2 0 2 10
1976-77 Indianapolis Racers WHA 27 2 2 4 2 6 1 1 2 0
1976-77 Oklahoma City Blazers CHL 42 17 18 35 22
NHL Totals 364 45 75 120 273 14 3 1 4 20


Rights transferred to Vancouver (WHL) after WHL club purchased Rochester (AHL) franchise, August 13, 1968. Claimed by Pittsburgh from Vancouver (WHL) in Intra-League Draft, June 10, 1969. Traded to St. Louis by Pittsburgh for Bob Johnson, October 4, 1973. Selected by New England (WHA) in 1972 WHA General Player Draft, February 12, 1972. WHA rights traded to Indianapolis (WHA) by New England (WHA), June, 1974.