By: Mark Allred | Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277
Happy 73rd Birthday To Former Boston Bruins Forward Don Marcotte!
Marcotte was born on April 15th, 1947, at the Arthabaska County Hospital. His family was longtime residents of nearby Asbestos, Quebec which is located in the southeast area of the province, north of Sherbrooke and south of Victoriaville. At the age of three, Don first laced up his first pair of skates and by the age of six was enrolled in youth hockey in his community. At the age of 16, Marcotte left the local youth programs for the Victoriaville Bruins of the QPJHL.
After one season in Victoriaville playing for the Bruins, the National Hockey League Boston Bruins came calling for his services and signed him to continue his development with the B’s Junior “A” affiliate the Niagara Falls Flyers in Ontario, Canada. In his rookie season in the Ontario Hockey Association with the Flyers, Marcotte posted 28-23-51 numbers which were career highs for the 5′-11″ 183-pound forward. Don would go onto finish his OHA career appearing in 137 games contributing 77-66-143 numbers from 1964-65 to 1966-67. During the 1965-66 campaign, the developing left winger got the call to play for Boston in one regular-season game and even went as far as Oklahoma City to play in two contests for the CPHL Blazers posting scoring one goal.
Marcotte would leave the OHA for good after the 1966-67 season to join the Boston Bruins American Hockey League team in Hershey, Pennsylvania and excelled at the higher level posting 31-22-53 totals in 72 games played in his rookie year. In his time with the Bruins top minor-pro affiliate, Don who was in his early 20’s would go onto have a solid AHL career with the Hershey Bears contributing 94-58-152 numbers in 174 games from 1967-68 to 1969-70. He would get another series of recalls to the NHL level playing in seven games for Boston contributing one goal in those appearances.
In the 1969-70 campaign, Don would earn an increasing amount of trust from Boston Bruins General Manager and NHL Hockey Hall of Famer Milt Schmidt after starting the first 35 games that year in Hershey posting 28-15-43 numbers. With his stellar play in his final games with the Hershey Bears, Marcotte would be inserted into Hall of Fame Head Coach Harry Sinden’s lineup for the second half of the season which would be the highlight of his career. After finishing the 1969-70 regular season as the second-best club in the East, the Bruins would enter the postseason beating the New York Rangers in a best-of-seven series 4-2, then go onto sweep the Chicago Blackhawks 4-0. Marcotte and the Bruins would meet the St. Louis Blues in the Stanley Cup Finals and after the iconic Bobby Orr overtime goal, the B’s would go onto sweep the Blues 4-0 to win the franchises fourth NHL Championship ending a 29-year drought. Marcotte appeared in 14 games during the 1970 Stanley Cup run contributing two goals winning his first championship as a rookie. He would win his second Stanley Cup during his second full NHL season in the spring of 1972 beating the New York Rangers.
Marcotte would play his entire NHL career with the Boston Bruins organization posting 230-254-484 numbers in 868 games. He was a defensive forward that was able to play multiple forward positions and was a fierce forechecker for many years alongside Ed Westfall and Derek Sanderson who were the B’s checking line. During the Bruins training camp in the fall of 1982, Boston released the then 34-year-old forward ultimately retiring from the game. Per the HockeyReference.com website, Marcotte had four career hat tricks in his career which all came in significant Bruins victories. His first three-goal effort came on February 8th, 1970, in a 7-1 win over the St. Louis Blues, his second on December 31st, 1975, in a 6-1 win over the Minnesota North Stars, his third on March 2nd,1977, in a 5-3 win over the New York Islanders, and finally on December 26th, 1981, in a 9-6 win over the Hartford Whalers.
When looking at Marcotte’s contributions t the Boston Bruins organization in the team’s all-time stats he ranks 10th in games played (868), ranked 12th in goals (230), ranked 24th in assists (254), ranked 17th in points (484), ranked 4th in shorthanded goals (21). With these offensive rankings throughout Marcotte’s NHL career along with his two Stanley Cup rings, the now 73-year-old should get consideration for a call to the Hall of Fame in my opinion.