Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Rogie Vachon
Vachon joined the Montreal Canadiens in 1966-67 to back up Gump Worsley and ended up playing the majority of their playoff games when they reached the Stanley Cup finals. Toronto won the Cup, but the diminutive Vachon earned a permanent place in the big league with his excellent play.

In 1967-68 Vachon excelled in 39 regular season contests and shared the Vezina Trophy with teammate Gump Worsley. Their goals-against mark of 2.26 was the league's best since 1958-59. His play contributed significantly to Montreal's consecutive Stanley Cup championships in 1968 and 1969. After Worsley suffered a nervous breakdown and moved out of Montreal, Vachon inherited the starting job in the Montreal net. He played well in 1969-70 but the defending champions failed to make the playoffs.

In 1971-72 Vachon requested a trade after he allowed four goals in his only period of action. He was given a new lease on life when the Los Angeles Kings acquired his services in November 1971. He went on to enjoy some of his finest seasons and helped the Kings become a competitive hockey club. He recorded 32 of his 51 career shutouts in Los Angeles and was a two-time selection to the NHL Second All-Star Team. Vachon became the most popular figure in franchise history and was selected the team's most valuable player four times in five years between 1973 and 1977.

The steady Gary Edwards served as Vachon's backup during these years and gave the Kings one of the rosiest goaltending pictures in the NHL. In 1974-75 the Kings set a franchise record with 105 points and a fourth place finish in the NHL's overall standings. That season, Vachon's 1.41 goals-against mark in the first 17 games represented the best start in the league since Jacques Plante's fine beginning in 1957-58. Unfortunately, the team was eliminated in the first round by a Toronto team that underachieved in the regular season. The Kings never did excel in the post-season despite Vachon's brilliance between the pipes. Following that glorious regular season, Bobby Clarke edged out Vachon in the voting for the Hart Trophy.

Vachon's finest hour came as Team Canada's goalie in the inaugural Canada Cup tournament in 1976. Since Ken Dryden and Bernie Parent were unavailable, Vachon, Gerry Cheevers and Glenn Resch were invited to compete for the job. Vachon emerged with the hot hand and played every one of his team's games. His spectacular play helped Canada to the championship and resulted in his selection as the team's most valuable player.

Vachon went on to close out his career with two seasons each in Detroit and Boston. He retired following the 1981-82 season with a career goals-against mark of 2.99. Vachon returned to Los Angeles in 1983-84, where he went on to serve as coach, general manager and chief hockey operating officer. The Kings honored their popular puck stopper by retiring his number in January 1985. He retired as general manager in 1991 but returned to the Kings a short time later as assistant to the club president.


REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP W L T SO Avg GP W L T SO Avg
1963-64 Montreal NDG Monarchs MMJHL 29 4 2.45 18 12 6 0 1 3.17
1963-64 Montreal Jr. Canadiens OHA-Jr. 7 0 4.35
1963-64 Montreal NDG Monarchs M-Cup 10 7 3 0 4 3.40
1964-65 Thetford Mines Aces QJHL 13 10 3 0 0 2.69 5 1 4 0 6.00
1964-65 Montreal Jr. Canadiens OHA-Jr. 14 0 4.14
1965-66 Thetford Mines Aces QJHL 39 25 13 1 2 3.00 11 7 4 0 1 2.82
1965-66 Quebec Aces AHL 10 6 4 0 0 3.00
1966-67 Houston Apollos CPHL 34 17 12 5 2 2.91
1966-67 Montreal Canadiens NHL 19 11 3 4 1 2.48 9 6 3 0 2.38
1967-68 Montreal Canadiens NHL 39 23 13 2 4 2.48 2 1 1 0 2.12
1968-69 Montreal Canadiens NHL 36 22 9 3 2 2.87 8 7 1 1 1.42
1969-70 Montreal Canadiens NHL 64 31 18 12 4 2.63
1970-71 Montreal Canadiens NHL 47 23 12 9 2 2.65
1971-72 Montreal Canadiens NHL 1 0 1 0 0 12.00
1971-72 Los Angeles Kings NHL 28 6 18 3 0 4.05
1972-73 Los Angeles Kings NHL 53 22 20 10 4 2.85
1973-74 Los Angeles Kings NHL 65 28 26 10 5 2.80 4 0 4 0 1.75
1974-75 Los Angeles Kings NHL 54 27 14 13 6 2.24 3 1 2 0 2.11
1975-76 Los Angeles Kings NHL 51 26 20 5 5 3.14 7 4 3 1 2.33
1976-77 Canada Can-Cup 7 6 1 0 2 1.39
1976-77 Los Angeles Kings NHL 68 33 23 12 8 2.72 9 4 5 0 4.15
1977-78 Los Angeles Kings NHL 70 29 27 13 4 2.86 2 0 2 0 5.50
1978-79 Detroit Red Wings NHL 50 10 27 11 0 3.90
1979-80 Detroit Red Wings NHL 59 20 30 8 4 3.61
1980-81 Boston Bruins NHL 53 25 19 6 1 3.34 3 0 2 0 5.85
1981-82 Boston Bruins NHL 38 19 11 6 1 3.66 1 0 0 0 3.00
NHL Totals 795 355 291 127 51 2.99 48 23 23 2 2.77


Father of Nick
QJHL First Team All-Star (1966)
Vezina Trophy (1968) (shared with Gump Worsley)
NHL Second All-Star Team (1975, 1977)
Canada Cup All-Star Team (1976) Played in NHL All-Star Game (1973, 1975, 1978)
Traded to Los Angeles by Montreal for Denis DeJordy, Dale Hoganson, Noel Price and Doug Robinson, November 4, 1971. Signed as a free agent by Detroit, August 8, 1978. Traded to Boston by Detroit for Gilles Gilbert, July 15, 1980.