Lionel Hitchman

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Why are the Hockey Hall Of Fame and the Boston Bruins unwilling to make this right? Lionel Hitchman was one of the games greatest all time defenders according to those quoted in this book. Read it for yourself and write the HHOF.

Text of Lionel Hitchman

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    An All-Star in 1929-1930?

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    E.W. Ferguson, Montreal Herald 1932

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    Hitchmans role in these playoffs is chronicled later in the text.

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    An opinion of C. F. Adams from previous page

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    The above clipping and those on the last few pages come from the following sources:

    Hockey The Illustrated History By Dan Diamond and Charles Wilkins

    An official Publication of the National Hockey League

    Ice Hockey Encyclopedia Stan and Shirley Fischler

    The Bruins 1997-1998 KevinVautour

    The Bruins in Black and White 1924-1966 R. Johnson and B.Codagnone

    Total Hockey The Offical Encyclopedia of the National Hockey league

    Diamond-Duplacey-Dinger-Kuperman-Zweig

    Lord Stanleys Cup Andrew Podnieks

    Hockey hall Of Fame

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    Lionel Hitchman debuted with the 1922-1923 Ottawa Senators.

    Hitchman scored the only goal of the game in the N.H.L. playoffs final game.

    The Ottawa team went on to defeat Vancouver and Edmonton for the Stanley Cup.

    The following year Hitchman was a regular on defence partnered with the great

    George Boucher.

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    Hitchman played a valued role in the 1922-1923 NHL playoffs, scoring in the second game to help Ottawa to the N.H.L Championship.

    He also contributed to weakening the Montreal team by his provocation of Sprague Cleghorn resulting in Cleghorns suspension from the playoffs by Cecil Hart.

    Hitchman went onto score against Edmonton in the Stanley Cup finals to help Ottawa to their victory.

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    A special relationship with Sprague Cleghorn begins.

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    Kid Defense

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    Mr. Gormans comments at the end of the 1923-1924 season.

    The Ottawa Senators sell Lionel Hitchman for cash to the new Boston franchise at the start of next season. Two weeks later Mr. Gorman sells his interest in Ottawa Club to Mr. Ahearn.

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    Lionel Hitchman goes to Boston Jan.10,1925.

    Following the Stanley Cup win of 1923 Lionel Hitchman replaced the great Eddie Girard,

    as George Bouchers defense partner in his first full season with the Ottawa Senators.

    During the 1923-1924 season he won the praise of many hockey experts, including Cecil Hart

    and Art Ross, the coach of the Hamilton Tigers. Mr. Gorman the Ottawa manager and part

    owner afforded Hitchman similar praise as described on the previous page.

    Interestingly during the 1924-1925 pre-season and in early league play Hitchman saw virtually

    no ice time. Ed Gorman a veteran of the amateur ranks played in his place.

    Suddenly Hitchman is off to Montreal on Jan.9th, 1925 to meet with Art Ross and to discuss a

    future with the new Boston franchise.

    While Mr. Hitchman is seeing surprisingly little playing time in Ottawa, Mr. Gorman is quietly

    negotiating his way out of the Ottawa Hockey scene as witnessed by the correspondence between

    Gorman and Ahearn on the next page.

    Given Hitchmans instant success with the struggling Boston Bruins is it possible that the

    two events are connected. It would be interesting to know what C.F. Adams paid for Hitchman

    and if this bit of cash facilitated Mr. Gormans move on to his next venture.

    Mr. Gorman sells his interest Jan. 20th after a negotiation that began at the start of the season.

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    In 1927 Lionel Hitchman becomes first captain of the Boston Bruins.

    Leads Bruins to 5 American Division Championships and a

    Stanley Cup in 1928-29.

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    Lionel Hitchman - before Shore, Clapper, Schmidt or Orr..

    Lionel Hitchmans # 3 first Bruin sweater retired. Feb.22,1934.

    The first captain of the Boston Bruins.

    The first to captain a Stanley Cup winning Boston Bruins team.

    The greatest defensive defenceman of his era. 1922-1934

    The first professional athlete to have his sweater number officially retired by a team?

    This honour bestowed on Lionel Hitchman by the Boston Bruins set a benchmark for future generations of great hockey players. Below are comments from some of those who have met the standard of Lionel Hitchmans legacy.

    Johnny Bucyk enjoyed a career as notable for its excellence as it was for its longevity. "Having my Number 9 retired at the Boston Garden in 1980 was outstanding. Its very exciting to see your number hanging there along with all the other great players. Its the greatest honour a player can get."

    It was impossible to get a ticket for the Bruins' game January 9, 1979 against the Soviet Wings. It was a very special evening for Boston, as their hero, Bobby Orr, was having his number retired by the Bruins. Johnny Bucyk presented Orr with a home Number 4 jersey, which the crowd urged Bobby to wear one final time. "I've been thinking for a week to try to think of what to say," Bobby laughed. Then, as he pulled the sweater over his head, the fans erupted into an extraordinary ovation as a circular banner bearing the name Robert G. Orr and the Number 4 was raised above centre ice. "I love you so much," he said, choking back tears. "I spent ten years here and they were the ten best years of my life!" After shaking hands with Senator Ted Kennedy and each of the current Bruins, Orr saluted the crowd and walked off the ice to the deafening chant of, 'Baw-bee! Baw-bee! Baw-bee!' The Number 4, now raised to the rafters, would never again be worn by a member of the Boston Bruins.

    In honour of his great contributions to hockey, both the Boston Bruins and Colorado Avalanche retired Ray's #77 jersey. In 2004, Ray Bourque was selected to join hockey's elite in the Hockey Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility. "I was hoping to get the call, but when it came, I was completely speechless," said Bourque after receiving notification of his election to the Hall. "When I started out playing in the NHL, my goal was simply to establish myself as a player and I never contemplated this type of honour."

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    A FANtastic perspective of Cam Neely By Bob Snow | Special to NHL.com Nov. 2, 2005

    On Jan. 12, 2004, the Boston Bruins lifted Cameron M. Neely's No. 8 to the TD Banknorth ceiling, a fitting gesture for the power forward who lifted the Bruins for a decade between 1986-96.

    What a thrill to gaze down from the press box as Neely slowly rolled hand-over-hand in methodical gesture that January eve; the same motion was also witnessed first-hand when Terry O'Reilly, Ray Bourque, Bobby Orr, Johnny Bucyk, and Phil Esposito before, all joining Lionel Hitchman, Eddie Shore, Dit Clapper, and Milt Schmidt as the 10 Bruins legends to have their numbers entered into Boston hockey history.

    On Nov. 7, 2005, Neely takes his final bow and emits his last cathartic outpouring of emotion for the game he truly loved to play when he accepts the quintessential honor bestowed upon the very best in the trade of professional hockey -- induction into the

    Hockey Hall of Fame.

    Cam Neely was one the the NHL's top power forwards for a decade in Boston.

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    Hockey Hall of Fame Selection Committee

    Attention Mr. Bill Hay

    Dear Sirs, this letter respectfully puts forth the name of Frederick Lionel Hitchman to be considered for

    Honoured Membership in the Hockey Hall of Fame. The length of time since Hitchman was

    a player will make the evaluation process a difficult one.To that end I have included a collection of later year

    print materials from reputable sources to support this submission. I have also included access directions

    and excerpts from the complete playing history of Fred Lionel H