This is from the book The New York Rangers
. Broadways Longest Running Hit by John Kreiser and Lou Friedman. On page 139: When Bobby Hull
came to the Rangers camp well into the twilight of his career, New Yorkers had to wonder: What would it have been like to have "The Golden Jet" in his prime? The Rangers actually did have him for a few brief weeks in the spring of 1959- the only problem was the games didn't count. Hull was among a handful of players added to the Rangers for an exhibition tour of Europe following the 1959 Stanley Cup playoffs. The Rangers and the Boston Bruins
played 23 games in a variety of European locales, including London, Geneva and Paris, with the Rangers winning 11, losing nine and tying three. Hull and another add-on, former Ranger Eddie Shack
, shared the team lead with 14 goals apiece. Hull's biggest game came midway through the tour in Zurich, Switzerland, when he scored four times in a 7-6 victory. The players each got $1,000 for the tour - a stipend that, in the Rangers case, helped make up for the money they didn't get by missing the playoffs. The only bad part for the Rangers came after they got home: They didn't get to keep Hull, then one of the NHL's up and coming superstars.
I found this story this afternoon after I posted my tale this morning. Keeping Hull would have been great, I would have settled for Eddie Shack
. I had always hoped that Francis would reacquire Shack when the Rangers started to contend in the late Sixties. Emile was too much of a tightass for such an unorthodox move.