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Backstrom, Ralph
Montreal Canadiens

During the latter half of the 1950s, the Montreal Canadiens had become a dynasty that steam-rolled through the rest of the NHL and won five consecutive Stanley Cups in the process. It's hard to break into a team like that. But RALPH BACKSTROM was able to crack a lineup that boasted Hall of Fame members Maurice and Henri Richard, Jean Beliveau, Dickie Moore, Bernie Geoffrion and Bert Olmstead. The Kirkland Lake, Ontario native plied his trade with the Hull-Ottawa Canadiens of the OHA in 1956-57 and 1957-58, getting a sniff of NHL action both seasons. In 1958-59, BACKSTROM finally got his chance, and the smooth-skating centre made the best of the opportunity. As a rookie, BACKSTROM won the CALDER TROPHY by scoring 18 goals and adding 22 assists for 40 points, helping the Canadiens win the Stanley Cup. BACKSTROM edged Carl Brewer of the Maple Leafs for the award.

Backstrom, Ralph