Brent Ashton

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Brent Ashton
Born (1960-05-18) May 18, 1960 (age 54)
Saskatoon, SK, CAN
Height 6 ft 1 in (185 cm)
Weight 210 lb (95 kg; 15 st 0 lb)
Position Left Wing
Shot Left
Played for Vancouver Canucks
Colorado Rockies/New Jersey Devils
Minnesota North Stars
Quebec Nordiques
Detroit Red Wings
Winnipeg Jets
Boston Bruins
Calgary Flames
National team  Canada
NHL Draft 26th overall, 1979
Vancouver Canucks
Playing career 1979–1994

Brent Kenneth Ashton (born May 18, 1960) is a retired Canadian professional ice hockey player who spent fourteen seasons in the National Hockey League between 1979 and 1993. Despite being a fine goalscoring winger, he was known during his career for being the most-traded player in the history of the NHL, a record since tied by Mike Sillinger.

Playing career[edit]

Ashton played his junior hockey for his hometown Saskatoon Blades and following a 119 point season in 1978–79 was selected in the second round (26th overall) of the 1979 NHL Entry Draft by the Vancouver Canucks. He stepped straight into the Canucks' lineup at the age of 19 in 1979–80. Although he tied an NHL rookie record with a 4–assist game against the Atlanta Flames, he was used sparingly and finished the year with 5 goals and 19 points in 47 games. In 1980–81, he improved to 18 goals and 29 points, but at the conclusion of the season was traded to the Colorado Rockies in a three-way deal.

In Colorado, Ashton received more icetime and responded in fine style, leading the Rockies with 36 assists and 64 points in 1981–82. For 1982–83, the franchise moved to New Jersey and became the New Jersey Devils, and Ashton slumped to just 14 goals and 33 points in 76 games.

Ashton was dealt to the Minnesota North Stars for the 1982–83 campaign, but struggled to get icetime on a deep North Star squad, and suffered through the worst season of his career, finishing with just 7 goals and 17 points. He was again struggling to start the 1983–84 season with just 4 goals through 29 games, but a trade to the Quebec Nordiques would rejuvenate his career. In 49 games after the trade to Quebec, Ashton exploded offensively with 27 goals and 51 points, finishing the year with a career-high 31 goals. He would turn in another solid season in 1984–85, finishing with 26 goals and 58 points.

Ashton would get off to a blistering start to the 1985–86 campaign, with 25 goals through 46 games, but in what would become the story of his career was traded mid-season to the Detroit Red Wings despite recording 78 goals in just 172 games as a Nordique. Ashton continued to score frequently in Detroit, finishing the season with a career-high 40 goals and 75 points, and added 13 points in 16 playoff games as the Red Wings reached the Campbell Conference finals. In 1987–88, he turned in a respectable 26 goals and 53 points and had another strong playoff performance with 7 goals and 12 points in 16 games as Detroit again reached the conference finals.

For the 1988–89 season, Ashton was on the move again, this time to the Winnipeg Jets. He turned in 31 goals - his 5th straight year with at least 25 goals - and a career-high 37 assists for 68 points, and at the conclusion of the season helped Canada to a silver medal at the 1989 World Championships.

Ashton would have the longest stay of his NHL career in Winnipeg, spending three full seasons with the Jets. He turned in another 20 goal season in 1989–90, but as he moved into his 30s injuries took their toll and his production began to fall off. After a poor start to the 1991–92 season, he was dealt to the Boston Bruins, where he rebounded to finish with 18 goals and 40 points. However, the following year he would struggle with just 2 goals in 26 games for the Bruins and was assigned to the minors for the first time in his 14-year career. He was eventually traded to the Calgary Flames, and finished out the year strongly with 19 points in 32 games as a Flame.

Unable to get an NHL contract for the 1993–94 campaign, Ashton signed with the Las Vegas Thunder of the International Hockey League and was playing well until suffering a career-ending knee injury in November. The injury occurred just as he was about to sign with the Los Angeles Kings, who would have been his 10th NHL team.

In 998 career NHL games, Ashton scored 284 goals and added 345 assists for 629 points, along with 635 penalty minutes. He was traded an NHL-record 9 times during his career.

Personal Life[edit]

Following his career, Ashton returned to his hometown of Saskatoon where he operates Brent Ashton Sportswear, as well as coaches minor hockey.

His brother, Ron Ashton, was also a professional hockey player, appearing for the Winnipeg Jets during their WHA incarnation.

Ashton is married with two sons, Taylor, born in 1989 and Carter Ashton, born in 1991. Carter is also a NHL player, playing in the Toronto Maple Leafs system.

Career statistics[edit]

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1975–76 Saskatoon Blades WCHL 11 3 4 7 11 18 1 1 2 5
1976–77 Saskatoon Blades WCHL 54 26 25 51 84 6 1 2 3 15
1977–78 Saskatoon Blades WCHL 46 38 26 64 47
1978–79 Saskatoon Blades WHL 62 64 55 119 80 11 14 4 18 5
1979–80 Vancouver Canucks NHL 47 5 14 19 11 4 1 0 1 6
1980–81 Vancouver Canucks NHL 77 18 11 29 57 3 0 0 0 2
1981–82 Colorado Rockies NHL 80 24 36 60 26
1982–83 New Jersey Devils NHL 76 14 19 33 47
1983–84 Minnesota North Stars NHL 68 7 10 17 54 12 1 2 3 22
1984–85 Minnesota North Stars NHL 29 4 7 11 15
1984–85 Quebec Nordiques NHL 49 27 24 51 38 18 6 4 10 13
1985–86 Quebec Nordiques NHL 77 26 32 58 64 3 2 1 3 9
1986–87 Quebec Nordiques NHL 46 25 19 44 17
1986–87 Detroit Red Wings NHL 35 15 16 31 22 16 4 9 13 6
1987–88 Detroit Red Wings NHL 73 26 27 53 50 16 7 5 12 10
1988–89 Winnipeg Jets NHL 75 31 37 68 36
1989–90 Winnipeg Jets NHL 79 22 34 56 37 7 3 1 4 2
1990–91 Winnipeg Jets NHL 61 12 24 36 58
1991–92 Winnipeg Jets NHL 7 1 0 1 4
1991–92 Boston Bruins NHL 61 17 22 39 47
1992–93 Providence Bruins AHL 11 4 8 12 10
1992–93 Boston Bruins NHL 26 2 2 4 11
1992–93 Calgary Flames NHL 32 8 11 19 41 6 0 3 3 2
1993–94 Las Vegas Thunder IHL 16 4 10 14 29
NHL totals 998 284 345 629 635 85 24 25 49 72

External links[edit]