Monday, May 14, 2012

Absurd Goalie Monday: Vincent Tremblay

While many teams credit one player who actually contributed in a good way to saving a franchise, this week's AGM is a guy who's short-comings helped the franchise for the better. However, it changed the way things were to happen in the NHL, but for a short time-- he changed the NHL. This week, the profile of Vincent Tremblay.

Tremblay started his journey with the Quebec Remparts of the QMJHL starting in the 1977-78 season, where he would go 19-21-4 in 50 games. In the 1978-79 season, Tremblay would go 24-27-10 in 66 games, allowing him to garner Second All-Start Team honors in the QMJHL.

The Toronto Maple Leafs would select Tremblay in the fourth round of the 1979 NHL Draft, immediately putting him into their system in the 1979-80 season, where he would split time between the AHL's New Brunswick Hawks for 13 appearances (4-3-0) and for the Maple Leafs for 10 appearances (2-1-0). In the 1980-81 season, Tremblay would setting in with New Brunswick, playing in 46 games and finishing with a 24-12-8 record, while appearing in three games for the Leafs, all losses. In the 1981-82 season, Tremblay would have his chance to be the starter for the Maple Leafs, playing in 40 games, but would compile a 10-18-8 record. The 1982-83 season, Tremblay saw himself in the AHL for most of the season for the St. Catherines Saints, playing there for 34 games (sadly, no record is around) and then play one game for the Leafs, not factoring in the decision.

In the summer of 1983, Tremblay would be traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins with Rocky Saganiuk for Nick Ricci and Pat Graham. This trade would be something interesting, as history would have it-- even if it meant that we have a Draft Lottery because of it. So, you see-- the 1983-84 season had Tremblay buried in the AHL with the Baltimore Skipjacks, playing in only 28 games there with a 10-8-7 record, but an interesting call-up changed the franchise of the Penguins forever.

Tremblay was called up by the Penguins and would start in four games. He would lose all four and then be demoted back to the AHL. This is important because the draft system is the team with the least amount of points would get the top pick and all the losses would be better for a better pick. Because of those losses, the Penguins had the worst record, allowing them to pick Mario Lemieux with the first overall pick in the 1984 Draft. The whole story is over at the aptly named blog "The Legend of Vinny T."

In the 1984-85 season, Tremblay would be playing in the AHL with the Rochester Americans under a minor league contract for 33 games, putting together a 13-10-8 record, which allowed him to get a contract by the Amercians' parent team-- the Buffalo Sabres-- despite Tremblay never playing for them. He would also play in the New Brunswick Senior League with the Riverview Trappers. After that season, Tremblay would retire.

While not much was made of his short career, Tremblay may have done more good for the Penguins organization than anyone could imagine, even if he was a pawn to the system and would be the cause for the lottery system to be implemented into the NHL Draft lexicon.

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