Keith Allen (ice hockey)

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Keith Allen
Hockey Hall of Fame, 1992
Keith Allen Saskatoon Quakers.png
Keith Allen pictured with the Saskatoon Quakers, circa 1941
Born (1923-08-21)August 21, 1923
Saskatoon, SK, CAN
Died February 4, 2014(2014-02-04) (aged 90)
Newtown Square, PA, USA
Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight 190 lb (86 kg; 13 st 8 lb)
Position Defence
Shot Left
Played for Detroit Red Wings
Playing career 1941–1957

Courtney Keith Allen (August 21, 1923 – February 4, 2014) was a Canadian professional ice hockey defenceman and National Hockey League (NHL) head coach and general manager. He was born in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. He was the executive vice president of the Philadelphia Flyers.[1]

Playing career[edit]

Allen played junior hockey for the Saskatoon Quakers in 1940–41, and then joined the Washington Eagles of the Eastern Amateur Hockey League for the 1941–42 season, followed by a year with the Buffalo Bisons of the American Hockey League. During the Second World War, he played on the Saskatoon Navy hockey team, and then played the 1945–46 season in the Western Canada Senior Hockey League with the Saskatoon Elks.

In 1946, Allen joined the Springfield Indians of the American Hockey League, for whom he played the next five seasons. The Indians moved to Syracuse in 1951, becoming the Warriors, and he was a steady presence in the lineup for the next two and a half seasons. In February 1954, Warriors owner Eddie Shore tried to assign Allen to the Springfield Indians of the Quebec Hockey League, but he (along with several other players) balked and he was suspended. He was sold to the Detroit Red Wings two weeks later. He played 10 games with Detroit in the 1953–54 season and appeared in the playoffs, getting his name engraved on the Stanley Cup. Allen played another 18 games for the Red Wings in 1954–55, which would be the end of his NHL playing career.

He spent most of the 1954–55 season in the Western Hockey League with the Edmonton Flyers—Detroit's farm team, whose roster included future Hockey Hall of Fame inductees Johnny Bucyk, Norm Ullman, Glenn Hall, Al Arbour, and player-coach Bud Poile. He then played one season with the Brandon Regals before being hired by the Seattle Americans as player-head coach in 1956. He retired as a player in 1957 to become a full-time coach.

Coaching/management career[edit]

From 1956 to 1965, Allen was a head coach in the Western Hockey League with the Seattle Americans/Seattle Totems, with only one losing season in eight years. With the NHL expansion in 1967, Allen was hired as the first head coach of the Philadelphia Flyers, with his former coach and teammate Bud Poile as general manager. In their inaugural season, the Flyers finished first in their division with the best record among the six new teams. They fell to third place in their division in the 1968–69 NHL season, and Allen then became the Flyers' general manager. There, he would help construct the famed "Broad Street Bullies" that led the Flyers to consecutive Stanley Cups in 1974 and 1975, earning the nickname "Keith the Thief". He would also help start the AHL's Maine Mariners, one of the most successful franchises in that league's history.

Allen was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame as a Builder in 1992. He was the executive vice president of the Flyers.

Life[edit]

Keith Allen was married to Joyce Webster for 65 years. Together they have a daughter, Traci, and two sons, Brad and Blake.[2] Relocating from Seattle in the 1960s, him and his wife Joyce settled in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.

Due to developing dementia in his later years, Allen lived in the care of an assisted living community, along with wife Joyce, in Newtown Square, Pennsylvania. He died on Tuesday, February 4, 2014. He was 90 years old.[3][4]

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1940-41 Saskatoon Jr. Quakers SJHL 10 4 0 4 2 2 1 0 1 2
1941-42 Washington Eagles EAHL 60 13 11 24 27 8 0 1 1 0
1942-43 Buffalo Bisons AHL 55 1 14 15 29 7 1 0 1 0
1943-44 Saskatoon Navy SSHL 15 9 7 16 12 1 0 0 0 0
1944-45 Saskatoon Navy SJHL 5 0 1 1 0
1945-46 Saskatoon Elks WCSHL 33 5 4 9 42 3 1 0 1 6
1946-47 Springfield Indians AHL 61 2 8 10 23 2 0 0 0 0
1947-48 Springfield Indians AHL 51 2 12 14 12
1948-49 Springfield Indians AHL 69 3 28 31 28 3 1 0 1 4
1949-50 Springfield Indians AHL 69 3 17 20 30 2 0 2 2 0
1950-51 Springfield Indians AHL 70 8 34 42 18 3 0 0 0 0
1951-52 Syracuse Warriors AHL 67 4 17 21 24
1952-53 Syracuse Warriors AHL 64 1 18 19 24 2 0 0 0 0
1953-54 Syracuse Warriors AHL 47 6 17 23 14
1953-54 Sherbrooke Saints QHL 3 0 1 1 4
1953-54 Detroit Red Wings NHL 10 0 4 4 2 5 0 0 0 0
1954-55 Detroit Red Wings NHL 18 0 0 0 6
1954-55 Edmonton Flyers WHL 34 4 12 16 10 9 0 2 2 6
1955-56 Brandon Regals WHL 69 0 13 13 40
1956-57 Seattle Americans WHL 41 0 6 6 0
AHL totals 552 30 165 195 202 19 2 2 4 4
NHL totals 28 0 4 4 8 5 0 0 0 0

Coaching record[edit]

Team Year Regular Season Post Season
G W L T Pts Finish Result
Philadelphia Flyers 1967-68 74 31 32 11 73 1st in West Lost in Quarter-Finals
Philadelphia Flyers 1968-69 76 20 35 21 61 3rd in West Lost in Quarter-Finals
NHL Total 150 51 67 33

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Position created
Head coach of the Philadelphia Flyers
196769
Succeeded by
Vic Stasiuk
Preceded by
Bud Poile
General Manager of the Philadelphia Flyers
196983
Succeeded by
Bob McCammon