By: Jeff Playdon | Follow me on Twitter @PlaydonJeff
Edward Michael Sandford, born on August 20th, 1928, was a professional hockey player who played for the Boston Bruins from 1947-1955. Sandford was an outstanding hockey player for the Bruins and even served as the Bruins team captain during the 1954-1955 season after Milt Schmidt retired the prior season. In his eight seasons with Boston, Ed played 442 games and, during that span, scored 94 goals and 136 assists. Since Ed is celebrating his birthday today, let’s look back at his time in the NHL.
OHA’s Most Valuable Player
Before playing in the NHL, Sandford played Junior Hockey for the St. Michael’s Majors program. During his playing time there, Sandford led his team to the Memorial Cup playoffs in 1946 and 1947. During 1947 Sandford led the OHA (Ontario Hockey Association) with 67 points in just 27 games. Sandford’s mighty production would lead St. Michael’s to its third Memorial Cup. In addition, he was awarded the Red Tilson Trophy as the OHA’s most valuable player.
Career with Boston
Following the 1946-1947 OHA season, Sandford was signed by the Boston Bruins in 1947. In his first season with Boston, Sandford put up ten goals and 15 assists in 59 games. Sandford’s production began to ramp up starting in the 1950-1951 season. From 1951-1955 Sandford made five straight all-star appearances. When the 1952-1953 season came around, Sandford began to become scoring havoc. During that season, he had 14 goals and 21 assists. His production also carried over to the 1953 playoffs when he led all scorers with eight goals and three assists.
While his scoring stood out on paper, Sandford proved that he was an effective and tenacious defensive left-winger. Sandford continued his immaculate offensive play in the following season by scoring a career-high 16 goals and 31 assists. Those numbers put Sandford top=10 in league scoring and led him to a Second Team All-Star. At the beginning of the 1954-1955 season, Sandford was named the Bruins team captain after Milt Schmidt announced retirement and became the head coach for the Bruins. Unfortunately, it turned out that the 1954-1955 season would be Sandford’s last as a Bruin and would be traded during the offseason to the Detroit Red Wings.
End of Career/Retirement
Sandford ended up only playing four games for Detroit and was then traded to the Chicago Blackhawks. Sandford finished his NHL career with the Chicago Blackhawks at the end of the 1955-1956 season. After his retirement, Sandford served in various off-ice capacities for the Bruins as a goal judge, official scorer, and eventually supervisor of off-ice officials. He became a curling enthusiast after his playing days and was one of the Bruins’ first alumni team players. Sandford, who turns 93 today, is the team’s oldest living former captain.
So Ed Sanford, on behalf of the BNG Hockey Production team and myself, we wish you a very Happy 93rd Birthday!