Fandom

Ice Hockey Wiki

Joe Crozier

54,081pages on
this wiki
Add New Page
Talk0 Share

Ad blocker interference detected!


Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.

Honoured Member of the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame

Joe Crozier
Joecrozier
Position Defenceman
Shot Right
Height
Weight
6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
180 lb (82 kg)
Teams PCHL
 San Francisco Shamrocks
 Vancouver Canucks
 USHL
 Denver Falcons
 QHL

 Quebec Aces
 AHL
 Springfield Indians
 Providence Reds
 Rochester Americans
 NHL
 Toronto Maple Leafs
 WHL
 Spokane Spokes
Nationality Flag of Canada Canadian
Born February 12, 1929,
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Pro Career 1949 – 1961


Joseph Richard Crozier

  • Born: February 19, 1929, in Winnipeg, Manitoba
  • Position: Defense, Coach, & General Manager

is a former professional defenceman and coach who played and coached primarily in the minor leagues.

After playing the better part of 12 seasons in the minor leagues with the Quebec Aces of the Quebec Senior Hockey League, which included a brief five game stint in the National Hockey League with the Toronto Maple Leafs, Crozier retired in 1961 and became a head coach for 22 years, beginning in 1963. He had also previously been a head coach for the Quebec Aces while he was still playing with them in 1957–58.

As a head coach in several leagues, Crozier is a three-time Calder Cup champion with the Rochester Americans of the American Hockey League, a two-time Lester Patrick Cup championship with the Vancouver Canucks of the Western Hockey League, and a Memorial Cup champion with the Kitchener Rangers of the Ontario Hockey League. During his coaching career, he also made brief appearances in the National Hockey League with the Buffalo Sabres for two and half seasons and the Toronto Maple Leafs from the end of 1979–80 to the first half of 1980–81.

In 1985, Crozier was inducted into the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame for his individual efforts, then once again in 2007 as part of a team induction of the Memorial Cup-runners-up 1948–49 Brandon Wheat Kings.

Playing careerEdit

A native of Winnipeg, Crozier played junior hockey in the Manitoba Junior Hockey League with the Brandon Wheat Kings. In his first season in 1947–48, he was named to the MJHL Second All-Star Team, then the First All-Star Team the following year. His second and final year in Brandon culminated in an eight-game 1948-49 Memorial Cup Final series against the Montreal Junior Royals. The seven-game series was extended an extra game as game three had ended in a 3-3 tie. Although Crozier scored the first goal in the final and deciding eight game, the Royals scored four times in the third period to defeat the Wheat Kings 6-4. They were inducted as a team into the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame 58 years later in 2007.

Turning professional in 1949 with the San Francisco Shamrocks of the Pacific Coast Hockey League, he began a long career in the minor leagues. After playing a season with the Vancouver Canucks in 1950–51, he joined the Quebec Aces of the Quebec Senior Hockey League. Crozier would remain with the Aces for eight seasons, earning Second All-Star Team honours in 1954 after a 27-point campaign and First Team honours in 1957 after recording 37 points. During the 1957–58 season, Crozier also acted as team head coach.

In 1959–60, Crozier joined the Rochester Americans of the American Hockey League, then earned a break with the Toronto Maple Leafs of the National Hockey League. He played five games with the Leafs, his only appearance in the NHL as a player, recording 3 assists.

After his brief NHL stint, Crozier finished his playing career with the Spokane Spokes of the Western Hockey League in 1959–60 and one more season with the Rochester Americans in 1960–61.

Coaching careerEdit

Crozier made his head coaching debut in 1957–58 with the Quebec Aces of the Quebec Hockey League, while still playing defence with the team, posting a 29-31-4 record. Upon retiring in 1961, he became a head coach for the Charlotte Checkers of the Eastern Hockey League in 1962. After one season with the Checkers, he rejoined the Rochester Americans of the American Hockey League. In 1965, his second season as head coach of the Americans, he won his first of three Calder Cups, as AHL champion, during five seasons with the team.

Fresh off of his third Calder Cup and fourth consecutive trip to the AHL finals, he became head coach for the Vancouver Canucks of the Western Hockey League, with whom he had also previously played for early in his career. Crozier immediately won two Lester Patrick Cups as WHL champion in his only two seasons with Vancouver.

After the second WHL championship in 1970, the Canucks were absorbed by the National Hockey League's Vancouver Canucks and Crozier briefly returned to the AHL to coach the Cincinnati Swords. However, after a heart attack to Buffalo Sabres coach Punch Imlach, Crozier was given Imlach's position and made his National Hockey League coaching debut in 1972. Although he finished the Sabres' 1971–72 season with just 8 wins in 36 games, Crozier coached the Sabres to a playoff berth the following season, posting a winning record of 37-27-14. However, after finishing his third season with the Sabres out of the playoffs, he was replaced by Floyd Smith after the 1973–74 season.

Upon leaving the Sabres, he joined the NHL-rival-league World Hockey Association with the Vancouver Blazers in 1974–75, then the Calgary Cowboys for two seasons as the franchise relocated. In 1975–76, Crozier made it to the semi-finals with the Cowboys but lost to the Winnipeg Jets. In his third and final season with the Blazers-Cowboys franchise, in which Calgary failed to make the playoffs, Crozier infamously dumped the team's spare hockey sticks from the bench onto the ice during a game in protest of a disputed call. Another incident with the Cowboys involves a mishap while trying to return to Calgary after a game against the San Diego Mariners. The pilot had failed to refuel and there was not enough gas to return home. Although Crozier asked the team to collectively pitch in, they still did not have enough money. The team was bailed out by their play-by-play announcer who used his wife's Texaco card to front the $1,500 bill. During his stint with the franchise, Crozier also rose to the position of general manager.

In 1979–80, after beginning the season in the AHL coaching the New Brunswick Hawks, Crozier received his second break in the NHL with the Toronto Maple Leafs, replacing, once again, "Punch" Imlach mid-season. He coached the Leafs for the final 10 games of the regular season, but they were swept in the first round of the 1980 Stanley Cup Playoffs by the Minnesota North Stars in three games. The following season, the Leafs started with just 13 wins in the first 40 games and Crozier was replaced mid-season with Mike Nykoluk.

After his second NHL stint, Crozier joined the Kitchener Rangers of the major junior Ontario Hockey League for two seasons, replacing Orval Tessier. The Rangers had just come off a Memorial Cup final game loss to the Cornwall Royals the previous season and in his first season with the team, they returned to the Memorial Cup, winning the J. Ross Robertson Cup as the OHL champion. The Rangers made it to the 1982 Memorial Cup Final and defeated the Sherbrooke Castors 7-4 to capture Crozier and the Rangers' first Canadian Hockey League title. With the team, Crozier future NHL stars Scott Stevens and Brian Bellows.

Coming off their Memorial Cup championship, Crozier and the Rangers finished with a strong 45-23-2 record in 1982–83, but fell to the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in the third round. After two seasons with the Rangers, Crozier returned to the Rochester Americans for one season, in which they reached the 1984 Calder Cup Final against the Maine Mariners, but lost in five games. Crozier then retired after the 1983-84 season.

Shortly after his retirement, Crozier was inducted into the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame in 1985 as an individual.

Career StatisticsEdit

PlayingEdit

    Regular Season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1947-48 Brandon Wheat Kings MJHL 23 1 10 11 18 5 0 1 1 0
1948-49 Brandon Wheat Kings MJHL 30 4 23 27 14 7 1 5 6 6
Memorial Cup -- -- -- -- -- 18 2 3 5 10
1949-50 San Francisco Shamrocks PCHL 71 7 20 27 14 7 1 5 6 6
1950-51 Denver Falcons USHL 9 1 2 3 6 -- -- -- -- --
Vancouver Canucks PCHL 46 2 15 17 24 -- -- -- -- --
1951-52 Quebec Aces QSHL 60 2 24 26 60 15 1 4 5 16
Alexander Cup -- -- -- -- -- 5 1 4 5 2
1952-53 Quebec Aces QSHL 60 6 14 20 40 22 1 12 13 15
1953-54 Quebec Aces QHL 71 6 21 27 63 16 0 5 5 2
Edinburgh Trophy -- -- -- -- -- 6 1 2 3 4
1954-55 Quebec Aces QHL 59 5 21 26 34 8 3 1 4 8
1955-56 Quebec Aces QHL 37 2 12 14 50
1956-57 Quebec Aces QHL 67 7 30 37 61 10 1 2 3 6
Edinburgh Trophy -- -- -- -- -- 6 1 6 7 6
1957-58 Springfield Indians AHL 2 0 1 1 0 -- -- -- -- --
Quebec Aces QHL 51 3 11 14 59 13 0 2 2 30
1958-59 Providence Reds AHL 3 0 0 0 8 -- -- -- -- --
Quebec Aces QHL 42 1 12 13 26 -- -- -- -- --
1959-60 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 5 0 3 3 2 -- -- -- -- --
Spokane Spokes WHL 45 1 10 11 50 -- -- -- -- --
Rochester Americans AHL 25 1 11 12 12 12 0 2 2 11
1960-61 Rochester Americans AHL 35 1 13 14 14 -- -- -- -- --
NHL Totals 5 0 3 3 2 -- -- -- -- --

CoachingEdit

    Regular Season   Playoffs
Season Team League Type GP W L T Pts Finish GP W L T Results
1957-58 Quebec Aces QHL Head 64 29 31 4 62 4th 13 7 6 - Lost Final
1961-62 Charlotte Checkers EHL Head 68 26 40 2 54 4th South DNQ
1962-63 Charlotte Checkers EHL Head 68 35 31 2 72 3rd South 10 5 5 - Lost Div Final
1963-64 Rochester Americans AHL Head 72 40 30 2 82 2nd West 2 0 2 - Lost Qtr Final
1964-65 Rochester Americans AHL Head 72 48 21 3 99 1st West 10 8 2 - Won League
1965-66 Rochester Americans AHL Head 72 46 21 5 97 1st West 12 8 4 - Won League
1966-67 Rochester Americans AHL Head 72 38 25 9 85 2nd West 13 6 7 - Lost Final
1967-68 Rochester Americans AHL Head 72 38 25 9 85 1st West 11 8 3 - Won League
1968-69 Vancouver Canucks WHL Head 74 36 24 14 86 2nd 8 8 0 - Won League
1969-70 Vancouver Canucks WHL Head 63 42 14 7 91 - -
1971-72 Cincinnati Swords AHL Head - -
Buffalo Sabres NHL Head 36 8 19 9 25 7th East DNQ
1972-73 Buffalo Sabres NHL Head 78 37 27 14 88 4th East 6 2 4 - Lost Qtr Final
1973-74 Buffalo Sabres NHL Head 78 32 34 12 76 5th East DNQ
1974-75 Vancouver Blazers WHA Head 78 37 39 2 76 5th Can DNQ
1975-76 Calgary Cowboys WHA Head 80 41 35 4 86 3rd Can 10 5 5 - Lost Semi
1976-77 Calgary Cowboys WHA Head 81 31 43 7 69 5th West DNQ
1979-80 New Brunswick Hawks AHL Head - -
Toronto Maple Leafs NHL Assist 10 5 5 0 10 4th Adams 3 0 3 - Lost 1st Round
1980-81 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL Head 40 13 22 5 31 - -
1981-82 Kitchener Rangers OHL Head 68 44 21 3 91 1st Emms 15 12 1 2 Won League
Memorial Cup Head -- -- -- -- -- -- 5 3 2 - Won Cup
1982-83 Kitchener Rangers OHL Head 70 45 23 2 92 2nd Emms 12 6 5 1 Lost Conf Final
1983-84 Rochester Americans AHL Head 80 46 32 2 94 2nd South 18 9 9 - Lost Final
NHL Head Coaching Totals 232 90 102 40 220 - 6 2 4 - -
WHA Head Coaching Totals 239 109 117 13 231 - 10 5 5 - -

Awards & AchievementsEdit

  • Manitoba Junior Hockey League Second All-Star Team (1948)
  • Manitoba Junior Hockey League First All-Star Team (1949)
  • Turnbull Cup Manitoba Junior Hockey League Championship (1949)
  • Abbott Cup Western Canada Junior A Hockey Championship (1949)
  • Quebec Senior Hockey League Championship (1952)
  • Alexander Cup Canada Major Hockey Championship (1952)
  • Quebec Senior Hockey League Second All-Star Team (1954)
  • Quebec Hockey League Championship (1954 & 1957)
  • Quebec Hockey League First All-Star Team (1957)
  • Edinburgh Trophy Canada Professional Hockey Championship (1957)
  • Calder Cup American Hockey League Championship (1965, 1966, & 1968)
  • Lester Patrick Cup Western Hockey League Championship (1969)
  • The Hockey News NHL Coach of the Year (1973)
  • J. Ross Robertson Cup Ontario Hockey League Championship (1982)
  • Memorial Cup Canada Major Junior Hockey Championship (1982)
  • Inducted into Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame (1985)
  • Inducted into Rochester Americans Hall of Fame (1986)
  • 1948-49 Brandon Wheat Kings inducted into Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame (2007)
  • Inducted into Buffalo Sabres Hall of Fame (2010)
  • Inducted into American Hockey League Hall of Fame (2012)

External linksEdit


Preceded by
Punch Imlach
Head Coaches of the Buffalo Sabres
1971–1974
Succeeded by
Floyd Smith
Preceded by
Andy Bathgate
Head Coaches of the Vancouver Blazers/Calgary Cowboys
1974–1977
Succeeded by
none
Preceded by
Punch Imlach
Head Coaches of the Toronto Maple Leafs
1980–1981
Succeeded by
Mike Nykoluk


Toronto Maple Leafs Head Coaches
ARENAS: D. Carroll • ST. PATS: Heffernan • Sproule • F. Carroll • O'Donoghue • Querrie • Powers • Rodden •
MAPLE LEAFS: Romeril • Smythe • Duncan • Irvin • Day • Primeau • Clancy • Meeker • Reay • Imlach • McLellan • Kelly • Neilson • Smith • Duff • Crozier • Nykoluk • Maloney • Brophy • Armstrong • Carpenter • Watt • Burns • Beverley • Murphy • Quinn • Maurice

Also on Fandom

Random Wiki