|Hockey Hall of Fame, 1958|
March 11, 1890|
Montreal, QC, CAN
|Died||July 11, 1956
Montreal, QC, CAN
|Height||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
|Weight||190 lb (86 kg; 13 st 8 lb)|
Renfrew Hockey Club
Toronto St. Patricks
Henry William Sprague "Peg" Cleghorn (March 11, 1890 – July 11, 1956) was a Canadian professional hockey player from Westmount who played for the Boston Bruins, Montreal Canadiens, Montreal Wanderers, Ottawa Senators, Renfrew Creamery Kings and Toronto St. Patricks in the National Hockey Association and National Hockey League from 1911 until 1929. His brother Odie Cleghorn also played professional ice hockey and the two played several seasons together.
Born in the upscale Westmount area of Montreal, Cleghorn had a hall of fame career but was regarded as one of the dirtiest players of his era. He played on Stanley Cup-winning teams in 1920, 1921 and 1924.
In 1909–10, Cleghorn began his career with the New York Wanderers, becoming a professional with Renfrew of the National Hockey Association (NHA) the next season. He then played for the Montreal Wanderers for six seasons. Sprague did not play the 1917-18 NHL season due to an leg injury. In the NHL, he played defence for the Ottawa Senators from 1918 to 1920. In an attempt at league parity, the NHL transferred him to the Hamilton Tigers in December 1920, but Cleghorn refused to report. The Senators asked that he be allowed to return to their team. George Kennedy, owner of the Montreal Canadiens, threatened to have Ottawa thrown out of the league. Cleghorn eventually signed with Toronto, but was released in March after the St. Pats lost their play-off and he signed with Ottawa during the playoffs in time to be a member of the 1921 Stanley Cup-winning team.
The league transferred Cleghorn to Hamilton in 1921, and again he refused to go. Just before the start of the 1921–22 NHL season, Sprague was traded to the Montreal Canadiens for Harry Mummery and Amos Arbour. He played four seasons in Montreal and after the 1924–25 NHL season, was purchased for $5000 by the Boston Bruins. Sprague played his final three seasons in the NHL with Boston (1925 to 1928) and served as their captain, and in 1927-28, assistant coach. He then moved to the minor-league Newark Bulldogs (1928–29) as a player-coach. Later, he coached the CAHL Providence Reds (1930–31) and NHL Montreal Maroons (1931–32). He later coached the Pittsburgh Shamrocks of the International Hockey League (1935–36) and the Cornwall Cougars of the Quebec league (1947–48).
Even in an era of rough play, Cleghorn was notorious for being among the dirtiest of the lot, and ranked amongst the league leaders in penalty minutes for nine of the first ten seasons of the NHL's history. In 1918, he was arrested for beating his wife with a crutch while he was recovering from injury. In 1923, Cleghorn hit Ottawa Senators player Lionel Hitchman in the head with his stick. Charged with aggravated assault, Cleghorn was found guilty and fined $50.
Cleghorn was hit by a car June 27, 1956, and died of his injuries at Montreal's St. Luc Hospital on July 12, 1956. His funeral was July 14, 1956 and he was buried at Mount Royal Cemetery in Montreal. Cleghorn's brother, Odie Cleghorn, was found dead in his bed just hours before the funeral, as a result of heart failure, perhaps induced by the stress of the loss of his brother.
Awards and achievements
- 1924 name was engraved on the Stanley Cup
- 1958 – Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame
- In 1998, he was ranked number 88 on The Hockey News' list of the 100 Greatest Hockey Players.
|1910–11||Renfrew Creamery Kings||NHA||12||5||0||5||27||—||—||—||—||—|
|1920–21||Toronto St. Patricks||NHL||13||3||4||7||26||1||0||0||0||0|
|1920–21||Ottawa Senators||Stanley Cup||—||—||—||—||—||5||1||2||3||36|
NHL coaching record
|Team||Year||Regular season||Post season|
|Montreal Maroons||1931-32||48||19||22||7||45||3rd in Canadian||Lost in Semi-Finals|
- "Sprague Cleghorn Dies of Injuries", The Lethbridge Herald, Friday, July 13, 1956, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada
- Sprague Cleghorn's biography at Legends of Hockey
- Sprague Cleghorn's career statistics at The Internet Hockey Database
- Sprague Cleghorn at findagrave.com
|Montreal Canadiens captain
|Boston Bruins captain
|Head coach of the Montreal Maroons