Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Phil Roberto
Phil Roberto played four years of junior hockey with the hometown Niagara Falls Flyers of the OHA. In his final season with the team, he demonstrated an ability to play tough and to be offensively prolific.

He hooked up with the Montreal Canadiens' organization in1969 where he spent most of the year playing for the Voyageurs of the AHL. Cracking a Habs' lineup replete with star forwards would prove to be very difficult.

In his second year with the organization, however, he did manage to dress for 39 games in which he showed some promise, netting 21 points. He then stayed on for a playoff run, culminating in a Stanley Cup victory against the Blackhawks in 1971.

Roberto returned the following season but was dealt to the St. Louis Blues for Jimmy Roberts. The Blues figured Roberto would be the offensive catalyst that could take some pressure off of their top gun, Garry Unger. But after a season and a half of moderate play, he suffered a severe cut to his arm while attempting to stop a glass door from hitting him in the face. His arm went through the window, cutting a nerve that debilitated his hand. Most hockey experts assumed that the accident had nixed Roberto's career. But extensive therapy in Toronto brought about a gradual recovery. As a gesture of support, the Leafs allowed him to use the Gardens' ice for one hour a day to stay in shape.

Once his healing was complete, Roberto showed his appreciation to the Leafs in his first game back, which happened to be in the Gardens. He scored an important goal against the Blue and White and then joined the Plager brothers in ganging up on Eddie Shack.

But in spite of his exceptional recovery, Roberto never regained his form with the Blues. He was traded to the Red Wings in 1974. There he scored 40 points in 46 games and appeared to be back on top. The next season, however, marked the beginning of a gradual decline in his NHL aspirations. Between 1976 and 1977, he made the rounds with three of the worst clubs in the league, moving with the Kansas City Scouts to Colorado and then on to the Cleveland Barons where he finished his big-league days.


REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1965-66 Niagara Falls Canucks OHA-B
1965-66 Niagara Falls Flyers OHA-Jr. 2 2 0 2 0 6 1 1 2 6
1966-67 Niagara Falls Canucks OHA-B
1966-67 Niagara Falls Flyers OHA-Jr. 14 1 0 1 6
1967-68 Niagara Falls Flyers OHA-Jr. 53 19 20 39 92 19 13 14 27 71
1967-68 Niagara Falls Flyers M-Cup 10 4 8 12 15
1968-69 Niagara Falls Flyers OHA-Jr. 52 29 65 94 152 14 7 15 22 38
1969-70 Montreal Canadiens NHL 8 0 1 1 8 +1
1969-70 Montreal Voyageurs AHL 54 20 19 39 160 8 3 1 4 19
1970-71 Montreal Canadiens NHL 39 14 7 21 76 +10 15 0 1 1 36
1970-71 Montreal Voyageurs AHL 32 19 22 41 127
1971-72 Montreal Canadiens NHL 27 3 2 5 22 +3
1971-72 St. Louis Blues NHL 49 12 13 25 76 -1 11 7 6 13 29
1972-73 St. Louis Blues NHL 77 20 22 42 99 -12 5 2 1 3 4
1973-74 St. Louis Blues NHL 15 1 1 2 10 -4
1973-74 Denver Spurs WHL 8 5 4 9 40
1974-75 St. Louis Blues NHL 7 0 2 2 2 -3
1974-75 Denver Spurs CHL 8 3 2 5 12
1974-75 Detroit Red Wings NHL 46 13 27 40 30 -10
1975-76 Detroit Red Wings NHL 37 1 7 8 68 -2
1975-76 Kansas City Scouts NHL 37 7 15 22 42 -11
1976-77 Colorado Rockies NHL 22 1 5 6 23 -11
1976-77 Cleveland Barons NHL 21 3 4 7 8 -7
1977-78 Birmingham Bulls WHA 53 8 20 28 91 4 1 0 1 20
NHL Totals 385 75 106 181 464 31 9 8 17 69


OHA-Jr. Second All-Star Team (1969) Traded to St. Louis by Montreal for Jimmy Roberts, December 13, 1971. Selected by New England (WHA) in 1972 WHA General Player Draft, February 12, 1972. Traded to Detroit by St. Louis with St. Louis's 3rd round choice (Blair Davidson) in 1975 Amateur Draft for Red Berenson, December 30, 1974. Traded to Kansas City by Detroit for Buster Harvey, January 14, 1976. Transferred to Colorado after Kansas City franchise relocated, July 15, 1976. Signed as a free agent by Cleveland after securing release from Colorado, December 24, 1976. Signed as a free agent by Birmingham (WHA), July, 1977.