Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Wayne Rivers
Wayne Rivers played his junior hockey with the hometown Hamilton Tiger Cats of the OHA between 1960 and 1962. During that time, he picked up his first two NHL games with the Detroit Red Wings before being dispatched to the Hershey Bears of the AHL.

Such was the pattern of Rivers' National League career. As a journeyman winger, he was the kind of insurance that original six clubs liked to keep in the minors for special needs. In 1963, the Bruins picked up his policy in an Intra-League Draft. He remained in their organization, appearing in a handful of Bruins games each year while passing most of each campaign in Hershey.

But then, in 1967, the NHL doubled in size, creating plenty of new big-league jobs. The fledgling St. Louis Blues claimed him in the Expansion Draft. He started their first season with high hopes for consistency. But as was the case throughout the 1960s, he lasted only 22 games and was then dispatched to the Kansas City Blues of the CHL.

In 1968, Rivers was traded to the New York Rangers where he played his final four NHL games before joining the Buffalo Bisons of the AHL. The transition marked the beginning of the second phase of Rivers' career in pro hockey. From the Bisons, he jumped to the Omaha Knights, Baltimore Clippers and then to the Springfield Kings in 1971-72.

It was at that time that the World Hockey Association appeared on the horizon, scooping up many a journeyman with a desire to make more cash. Rivers jumped into the stream, signing with the New York Raiders. In the WHA, Rivers' style of play was well adapted to the wide-open play he encountered. He soon became a prolific scorer, netting 77 points in 75 games. In his third season, he jumped to the San Diego Mariners where he scored 107 points in 78 games.

After his standout performance in 1974-75, Rivers wanted more money than the Mariners were willing to pay. They placed him on waivers along with a handful of other players. He slipped through the waiver net untouched, however, and eventually reconciled with the club. He skated two more years with the team and then rounded out his career with the San Francisco Shamrocks of the PHL in 1978.

REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1959-60 Hamilton Kilty B's ON-Jr.B
1959-60 Hamilton Tiger Cubs OHA-Jr. 2 0 0 0 2
1960-61 Hamilton Red Wings OHA-Jr. 41 13 18 31 38 4 0 0 0 21
1961-62 Hamilton Red Wings OHA-Jr. 48 14 15 29 55 10 2 1 3 20
1961-62 Detroit Red Wings NHL 2 0 0 0 0
1961-62 Hershey Bears AHL 1 0 0 0 0
1961-62 Hamilton Red Wings M-Cup 14 10 5 15 43
1962-63 Hershey Bears AHL 52 15 31 46 42 12 0 0 0 13
1963-64 Boston Bruins NHL 12 2 7 9 6
1963-64 Hershey Bears AHL 36 20 6 26 24
1964-65 Boston Bruins NHL 58 6 17 23 72
1964-65 Hershey Bears AHL 14 6 8 14 0
1965-66 Boston Bruins NHL 2 1 1 2 2
1965-66 Hershey Bears AHL 65 37 30 67 81 3 1 0 1 2
1966-67 Boston Bruins NHL 8 2 1 3 6
1966-67 Hershey Bears AHL 54 30 37 67 59 5 0 2 2 4
1967-68 St. Louis Blues NHL 22 4 4 8 8 -2
1967-68 Kansas City Blues CPHL 50 25 37 62 41 7 6 1 7 9
1968-69 New York Rangers NHL 4 0 0 0 0 -1
1968-69 Buffalo Bisons AHL 67 30 37 67 35 6 3 5 8 0
1969-70 Buffalo Bisons AHL 68 27 34 61 58 14 3 9 12 6
1969-70 Omaha Knights CHL 6 3 4 7 7
1970-71 Baltimore Clippers AHL 65 38 37 75 66 6 3 2 5 6
1971-72 Springfield Kings AHL 68 48 33 81 67 5 0 3 3 4
1972-73 New York Raiders WHA 75 37 40 77 47
1973-74 New York/New Jersey Knights WHA 73 30 27 57 20
1974-75 San Diego Mariners WHA 78 54 53 107 52 5 3 1 4 8
1975-76 San Diego Mariners WHA 71 19 25 44 24 11 4 4 8 4
1976-77 San Diego Mariners WHA 60 18 31 49 40 7 1 1 2 2
1977-78 San Francisco Shamrocks PHL 32 11 22 33 7
1978-79 San Francisco Shamrocks PHL 15 4 5 9 25
NHL Totals 108 15 30 45 94


AHL Second All-Star Team (1967, 1971)
CPHL Second All-Star Team (1968)
AHL First All-Star Team (1972)
Claimed by Boston from Detroit (Hershey-AHL) in Inter-League Draft, June 4, 1963. Claimed by St. Louis from Boston in Expansion Draft, June 6, 1967. Traded to NY Rangers by St. Louis with Don Caley for Camille Henry, Bill Plager and Robbie Irons, June 13, 1968. Traded to Los Angeles (Springfield-AHL) by NY Rangers (Baltimore-AHL) for Mike McMahon, October, 1971. Selected by Ontario-Ottawa (WHA) in 1972 WHA General Player Draft, February 12, 1972. Traded to NY Raiders (WHA) by Ottawa (WHA) for future considerations, July, 1972. Transferred to San Diego (WHA) after New York-Jersey (WHA) franchise relocated, April 30, 1974.
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