Cesare Maniago

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Cesare Maniago
CManiago.png
Maniago, c. 1958 at St. Michaels College
Born (1939-01-13) January 13, 1939 (age 78)
Trail, BC, CAN
Height 6 ft 3 in (191 cm)
Weight 195 lb (88 kg; 13 st 13 lb)
Position Goaltender
Caught Left
Played for Toronto Maple Leafs
Montreal Canadiens
New York Rangers
Minnesota North Stars
Vancouver Canucks
Playing career 1960–1978

Cesare "Hail Cesare" Maniago (born January 13, 1939) is a retired National Hockey League goaltender. He is second all-time in games played in goal for the Minnesota North Stars, where he spent most of his career.

Playing history[edit]

Originally the property of the Toronto Maple Leafs, the young goalie played seven games for the Leafs in the 1960–61 season. Picked up by the Montreal Canadiens in the inter-league draft the following season, Maniago underwent a lengthy apprenticeship in the minor leagues, spending the better part of five years on the farm. The high point of his years with Montreal was a 14-game stint in relief of the ailing Jacques Plante during the 1963 season. He had a sparkling season for the Minneapolis Bruins of the Central Hockey League in 1965, winning the league's most valuable player award, after which he was dealt to the New York Rangers. Maniago competed against Ed Giacomin and Don Simmons for the starting goal position in 1966, playing 28 games for the last place team. On March 12, 1966, in Chicago, Maniago earned the questionable distinction of allowing the Chicago Blackhawks' star left winger Bobby Hull's 51st goal of the season, the first time in league history that any player had scored more than 50 goals in one year. (After the game, Maniago insisted that Chicago's crafty forward Eric Nesterenko had interfered with him during the play: “Nesterenko lifted the blade of my stick, and the puck went under it.”) Giacomin firmly won the job the next season as the much-improved Rangers made the playoffs, and Maniago played in just six games as his backup.

Minnesota[edit]

With expansion arriving the next season, Maniago had his opportunity. He was the first draft choice of the expansion Minnesota North Stars, immediately becoming their number one goaltender, a job he kept for the next nine seasons. Maniago's play led the North Stars into the playoffs five of their first six seasons. One of his best years was his first with the team, where he had career highs in wins and shutouts while leading underdog Minnesota into the 1967-68 West Division semi-finals. The North Stars struggled the next season, finishing in last place and missing the playoffs.

Unable to find a suitable goalie to help Maniago with the workload (the other goalies the team tried went a combined 11-35-16 in Minnesota's first three seasons) the North Stars obtained the rights to Lorne "Gump" Worsley from the Canadiens, talking him out of retirement in 1970. The late-season addition rejuvenated the struggling team, who managed to finish strongly, ending up in third place. Over the next three seasons the tandem led the North Stars into the playoffs, including an appearance against Montreal in the 1971 semifinals. In this series, Minnesota was the first expansion team to defeat an Original Six team in a playoff game, beating the Canadiens twice.

Starting in 1974, the fortunes of the Minnesota club sagged and Maniago's play suffered as well. After that season Worsley retired, leaving Maniago as the sole experienced goalie on the struggling team. After the 1976 season, he was traded to the Vancouver Canucks, for whom he played his two final seasons.

Legacy[edit]

Maniago retired with 190 wins in 568 games, recording 30 shutouts and a career 3.27 goals against average, leading Minnesota goaltenders in every meaningful statistical category. At the time of his retirement, he was in the top 25 in NHL history in shutouts, fifth in all-time losses and twelfth in all-time games played.

After his retirement, Maniago served several seasons as the Canucks' goaltender coach.

Maniago remains second in all-time games played and minutes played in net for the Minnesota/Dallas franchise behind Marty Turco, and is third in wins and shutouts to Ed Belfour and Turco.

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season and playoffs[edit]

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP W L T MIN GA SO GAA SV% GP W L T MIN GA SO GAA SV%
1957–58 St. Michael's Majors OHA-Jr. 48 21 19 7 2880 173 2 3.60
1958–59 St. Michael's Majors OHA-Jr. 42 2520 131 4 3.12
1959–60 Kitchener-Waterloo Dutchmen OHA-Sr. 38 2240 149 0 3.99
1959–60 Chatham Maroons Al-Cup 14 10 3 1 850 40 3 2.82
1960–61 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 7 4 2 1 420 17 0 2.43 .928 2 1 1 145 6 0 2.48 .905
1960–61 Sudbury Wolves EPHL 11 7 3 1 660 19 3 1.73
1960–61 Vancouver Canucks WHL 2 2 0 0 120 5 0 2.50
1960–61 Spokane Comets WHL 30 17 10 3 1800 90 1 3.00 4 1 3 240 19 0 4.75
1961–62 Hull-Ottawa Canadiens EPHL 68 37 21 10 4080 168 3 2.47 13 8 5 823 32 0 2.33
1962–63 Montréal Canadiens NHL 14 5 5 4 820 42 0 3.07 .897
1962–63 Québec Aces AHL 5 2 3 0 300 19 0 3.80
1962–63 Spokane Comets WHL 1 0 1 0 60 4 0 4.00
1962–63 Hull-Ottawa Canadiens EPHL 28 13 11 4 1680 86 1 3.07 3 0 3 185 9 0 2.92
1963–64 Buffalo Bisons AHL 27 11 13 1 1630 103 0 3.79
1963–64 Omaha Knights CPHL 6 2 2 2 360 23 0 3.83
1964–65 Minneapolis Bruins CPHL 67 34 26 7 4020 184 6 2.75 5 1 4 300 19 1 3.80
1965–66 New York Rangers NHL 28 9 14 4 1613 94 2 3.50 .895
1965–66 Baltimore Clippers AHL 27 11 16 0 1572 83 1 3.17
1966–67 New York Rangers NHL 6 0 1 1 219 14 0 3.84 .881
1967–68 Minnesota North Stars NHL 52 22 16 9 2876 133 6 2.77 .913 14 7 7 895 39 0 2.61 .918
1968–69 Minnesota North Stars NHL 64 18 34 10 3599 198 1 3.30 .905
1969–70 Minnesota North Stars NHL 50 9 24 16 2887 163 2 3.39 .908 3 1 2 180 6 1 2.00 .941
1970–71 Minnesota North Stars NHL 40 19 15 6 2380 107 5 2.70 .914 8 3 5 480 28 0 3.50 .896
1971–72 Minnesota North Stars NHL 43 20 17 4 2539 112 3 2.65 .919 4 1 3 238 12 0 3.03 .906
1972–73 Minnesota North Stars NHL 47 21 18 6 2736 132 5 2.89 .910 5 2 3 309 9 2 1.75 .939
1973–74 Minnesota North Stars NHL 40 12 18 10 2378 138 1 3.48 .898
1974–75 Minnesota North Stars NHL 37 11 21 4 2129 149 1 4.20 .881
1975–76 Minnesota North Stars NHL 47 13 27 5 2704 151 2 3.36 .901
1976–77 Vancouver Canucks NHL 47 17 21 9 2699 151 1 3.36 .894
1977–78 Vancouver Canucks NHL 46 10 24 8 2570 172 1 4.02 .870
NHL totals 568 190 257 97 32,569 1773 30 3.27 .902 36 15 21 2247 100 3 2.67 .916

"Maniago's stats". The Goaltender Home Page. Retrieved 2017-10-01. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Jeannot Gilbert
CPHL Most Valuable Player Award
1964–65
Succeeded by
Art Stratton