Smith, last member of '40 Cup team, dies

Updated: May 21, 2009, 10:54 PM ET
Associated Press

VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Hall of Fame player Clint Smith, a two-time winner of the Lady Byng Trophy while with the Chicago Blackhawks and New York Rangers, has died. He was 95.

Smith died Tuesday, the Vancouver Canucks announced Thursday. He played 11 years in the NHL with New York (1936-43) and Chicago (1943-47) and was the lone surviving member of the Rangers' Stanley Cup-winning team in 1940. Teammate Alf Pike died in March.

Smith was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1991.

The 5-foot-8, 165-pound center won the Lady Byng Trophy in 1939 and 1944, an award given for skill and gentlemanly play. He had only 24 penalty minutes in 483 regular-season games. Smith had a four-season stretch in which he wasn't called for a penalty.

In the 1943-44 season, Smith set an NHL record with 49 assists while playing on a line with future Hall of Famers Bill Mosienko and Doug Bentley. The trio set a league scoring record by producing 219 total points.

Smith also shares the NHL record for most goals in a period with four, set on March 4, 1945, against Montreal. He played his early hockey in Saskatchewan before moving to Vancouver in 1933 to play for the Vancouver Lions of the North West Hockey League. He led the league with 25 goals in his rookie season.

Following his NHL career, Smith played with the Tulsa Oilers of the USHL and was chosen as the league's most valuable player in 1948. He was a player-coach for the St. Paul Saints of the USHL and a full-time coach with the Cincinnati Mohawks of the American Hockey League in 1952.

Smith returned to Vancouver in 1953 to play old-timers hockey.

He was founding member of the British Columbia Hockey Benevolent Association, also known as the Canucks Alumni. He held various positions within the organization, including president.

Smith also retained ties to the Rangers organization throughout his life and took part in the team's 75th anniversary celebration nine years ago at Madison Square Garden.

Funeral plans were not immediately announced.


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press