Thursday, January 17, 2013

Dave Elenbaas

At Least 29 NHL Games

October 25, 1975 Montreal Canadiens vs Boston Bruins. 6-2 win.
October 27, 1975 Montreal Canadiens vs New York Islanders. 4-4 tie.
October 14, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Philadelphia Flyers. 2-1 win.
October 16, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs New York Rangers. 7-4 win.
October 17, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Boston Bruins. 3-5 loss.
October 19, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Washington Capitals. 6-0 win.
October 21, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Toronto Maple Leafs. 5-3 win.
October 23, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Pittsburgh Penguins. 9-1 win.
October 25, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs New York Islanders. 4-1 win.
October 27, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Chicago Blackhawks. 4-4 tie.
October 30, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Boston Bruins. 3-4 loss.
November 1, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Buffalo Sabres. 3-2 win.
November 3, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Minnesota North Stars. 5-2 win.
November 6, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Chicago Blackhawks. 11-3 win.
November 9, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs St. Louis Blues. 8-1 win.
November 10, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Atlanta Flames. 2-2 tie.
November 13, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Colorado Rockies. 3-3 tie.
November 15, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs St. Louis Blues. 4-2 win.
November 17, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Toronto Maple Leafs. 0-1 loss.
November 19, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Minnesota North Stars. 6-3 win.
November 21, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Toronto Maple Leafs. 9-5 win.
November 23, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs New York Islanders. 5-1 win.
November 24, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Cleveland Barons. 8-1 win.
November 27, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Los Angeles Kings. 4-3 win.
December 20, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Vancouver Canucks. 5-4 win.
December 30, 1976 Montreal Canadiens vs Minnesota North Stars. 5-5 tie.
January 2, 1977 Montreal Canadiens vs Atlanta Flames. 7-0 win.
January 3, 1977 Montreal Canadiens vs Philadelphia Flyers. 6-4 win.
January 6, 1977 Montreal Canadiens vs Buffalo Sabres. 9-2 win.



     "I was first called up I believe on October 25, 1975 for a game against the Bruins at the Forum," recalled Dave Elenbaas. "If I remember correctly, Ken Dryden was unable to play for some reason and Buddy Larocque played. What is most memorable about the game, apart from it being the first time I dressed in the NHL, was that there was a bench clearing brawl. Now, having played NCAA hockey where there was no fighting, and even in the AHL for two season by that point with the Voyageurs, I had not had a bench clearing brawl that I remember to date. I was a little slow getting off the bench. I looked down the way and caught a glimpse of Scotty Bowman who was looking at me as if to say: 'what are you waiting for?'.  Anyway, out I went looking for the Bruins back-up, who on this night happened to be Dave Reese who was predominately the Rochester goalie and against whom I had played several AHL games. He was also the victim of Darryl Sitter's record 10 point game. While there was mayhem all around us, we kind of intentionally drifted to the centre ice area, hoping the cameras would catch us for all our friends to see. Little did I know that was going to be the extend of my career 'on the ice during a game' so to speak." Dave Elenbass, therefore, has a fight in an official NHL game without ever really playing the NHL. An anomaly of NHL statistics.

    Elenbaas recalls his time in Montreal, "In 76-77 I was actually with the team through most of the first three months of the season as they could not get me through waivers which they needed to do to send me down. Then Larocque broke his hand early on, and I started dressing as the back-up, I think it was October 14, 1976 and did so until mid-December, around 20 games. Ken Dryden played every minuted of every game, including one against the Rangers when teammate Jimmy Roberts came up to me before the game and said, 'you'll be playing tonight. I drove in with Kenny (Dryden) and we had to stop the car several times for him to trow-up.'  Needlesss to say, Scotty Bowman played Ken anyway (and Ken was not happy). I finally cleared waivers and returned to the AHL in mid December but was called back up for a game in Vancouver on Monday Dec. 20, 1976 and dressed. I remember it well as that was the near culmination of the road trip from hell."

  "The road trop from hell - started on the preceding Thursday night with a flight from Halifax to Boston, and then from there a bus trip to New Haven, where we played Friday night. After the New Haven game, we went back on the bus to Hershey for a Saturday game. After that game, back on the bus to Binghampton until morning, when we bussed the rest of the way to Rochester where we played Sunday night. After the Rochester game, on the bus to Toronto where we slept overnight. On Monday morning I got word that I had to get to Vancouver to dress that night (I cannot remember which goalie was unavailable). I could not get a direct flight and had to go through Calgary. I got to Vancouver  @5:00 pm Vancouver time and dressed for the game. Its a good thing I did not have to make my NHL debut that night. If I had, I would have been a record holder of another sort: highest GAA in NHL history. We climbed on a flight back to Montreal with the team right after the game. Everyone was partying on the flight as it was the last game until after Christmas, and despite being dog tired I could not sleep because of all the noise. When we got to Montreal on Tuesday morning, I had to catch a flight to St. John N.B. where the Voyageurs were to play a touring Soviet team that night. I beat the Voyageurs to St. John, arriving at 3:00 pm (they were bussing in from Halifax). No hotel room to go to - I went to the rink and slept on a bench in the dressing room. They arrived at around 5:00 pm. I dressed, but mercifully did not play, and we got on a bus after the game and bussed back to Halifax (4.5 hours), arriving around 3 in the morning. I slept 12 hours."

   When asked if it bothered him not having gotten a chance to play for the Canadiens Elenbaas joked, "wiser people than me clearly knew what they were doing!" He did, however, add, "the one regret is that because I did not play whatsoever, you cannot find me on the Habs' website or history, notwithstanding the number of games I dressed for."

Career stats from Hockeydb.com
Born -- Chatham, ONT 
Height 5.10 -- Weight 175
Selected by Montreal Canadiens round 4 #62 overall 1972 NHL Amateur Draft
RS ScoringRS Goalie StatsPO Scoring
SeasonTeamLgeGPAPIMMinGAENSOGAAWLTSvsPctGPAPIM
1970-71Cornell UniversityECAC000
1971-72Cornell UniversityECAC000
1973-74Nova Scotia VoyageursAHL3916510
1974-75Nova Scotia VoyageursAHL3012177193213.15131337920.895400
1975-76Nova Scotia VoyageursAHL48314502
1976-77Nova Scotia VoyageursAHL3126186481152.6121737490.902500
1977-78Dallas Black HawksCHL460292689150413.352320211990.8891312

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