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Butch Bouchard

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Butch Bouchard
Position Defenceman
Shot Right
6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
205 lb (93 kg)
Teams Montreal Canadiens
Nationality Flag of Canada Canadian
Born September 11, 1920(1920-09-11),
Montreal, QC, CAN
Pro Career 1941 – 1956

Émile Joseph (Butch) Bouchard (born September 11, 1920) is a former Canadian player who played defence with the Montreal Canadiens in the National Hockey League (NHL) from 1941 to 1956. He was born in Montreal, Quebec.

He played junior hockey with the Verdun Maple Leafs and was a teamate there of Maurice Richard.

Far from an outstanding skater Bouchard became a star with the Montreal Canadiens because of his size, strength and determination. At 6'2" and 205 pounds he was considered a giant compared to players of the 1940s. He also practiced heavy weight training in an era before NHL players were concerned about upper body strength. He also learned to compensate for his lack of skating expertise by playing better positional hockey and becoming a skilled passer.

Bouchard was integral in rejuvenating a Montreal club which had not won the Stanley Cup for 10 years since 1930-31. He was able to bring some youthful enthusiasm that was previously lacking. Also the Canadiens had almost completely ignored local junior hockey before they got Bouchard and Richard.

Bouchard won the Stanley Cup four times: 1944, 1946, 1953 and 1956, the last two as the first Quebec-born captain of the Canadiens. He was selected to the NHL All-Star team for four consecutive seasons from 1943-47 - the last three to the 1st team. Despite his great strength he rarely fought - instead intimidated his opponents with his large size.

After he retired Bouchard took a great interest in junior hockey in Quebec. Bouchard was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1966. The QMJHL's Defenceman of the Year Trophy (Emile Bouchard Trophy) is named in his honour.

He is the father of former NHL defenceman Pierre Bouchard.


Bouchard, second from left in the first row, with a local championship team in 1938 in Montreal.

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Preceded by
Bill Durnan
Montreal Canadiens Captains
Succeeded by
Maurice Richard

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