Mortson at St. Michaels College, c. 1944
January 24, 1925|
New Liskeard, ON, CAN
|Died||August 8, 2015
Timmins, ON, CAN
|Height||5 ft 11 in (180 cm)|
|Weight||190 lb (86 kg; 13 st 8 lb)|
|Played for||Toronto Maple Leafs
Chicago Black Hawks
Detroit Red Wings
James Angus Gerald "Old Hardrock" Mortson (January 24, 1925 – August 8, 2015) was a Canadian ice hockey defenceman in the National Hockey League. He played for the Toronto Maple Leafs, Chicago Black Hawks, and Detroit Red Wings, winning four Stanley Cups with Toronto. He also played in eight NHL All Star games.
Mortson grew up in Northern Ontario. He joined the St. Michael's Majors of the Ontario Hockey Association Jr. league in 1943–44 and played two seasons for them. He then turned professional and played for the United States Hockey League's Tulsa Oilers in 1945–46, compiling 48 points in 51 games.
National Hockey League
In 1946–47 Mortson joined the NHL's Toronto Maple Leafs, where he played for the next six seasons. He and fellow defenceman Jim Thomson were known as the "Gold Dust Twins", and the two helped the Maple Leafs win Stanley Cups in 1947, 1948, 1949, and 1951. In the 1948 All Star game, Mortson and Gordie Howe squared off in an All-Star Game and, as of 2015, are the only players to fight in an NHL All-Star Game. In 1950, Mortson was named to the league's first all-star team.
In 1952 Mortson was traded to the Chicago Black Hawks, along with Cal Gardner, Ray Hannigan, and Al Rollins, for Harry Lumley. Mortson played for the Black Hawks for six seasons. In 1956–57 he led the league in penalty minutes for the fourth time. He was then traded to the Detroit Red Wings in 1958 and played one season for them. Mortson played 797 games and had 198 points and 1,380 penalty minutes in his 13-year NHL career. He was known for his physical play and got into numerous fights.
After his NHL career ended, Mortson played for several minor league teams, including the American Hockey League's Buffalo Bisons and in the Ontario Hockey Association Senior A League. He retired in 1967 with the Oakville Oaks.
Post-hockey and death
After retirement from hockey Mortson was involved in the food and beverage business and lived in Oakville, Ontario. In 1970, he moved to Timmins becoming a stockbroker and later as a mining company representative. He died in Timmins, Ontario on August 8, 2015. He was 90 years old and was survived by wife Sheila and six children. He is predeceased by one son.
Awards and achievements
- 1947 Stanley Cup Championship (Toronto)
- 1948 Stanley Cup Championship (Toronto)
- 1949 Stanley Cup Championship (Toronto)
- 1951 Stanley Cup Championship (Toronto)
- 1947 NHL All-Star (Toronto)
- 1948 NHL All-Star (Toronto)
- 1950 NHL All-Star (Toronto)
- 1951 NHL All-Star (Toronto)
- 1952 NHL All-Star (Toronto)
- 1953 NHL All-Star (Chicago)
- 1954 NHL All-Star (Chicago)
- 1956 NHL All-Star (Chicago)
|1942–43||Kirkland Lake Lakers||GBHL||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|1943–44||Toronto St. Michael's Majors||OHA-Jr.||25||5||11||16||16||12||2||2||4||12|
|1944–45||Toronto St. Michael's Majors||OHA-Jr.||17||6||12||18||18||6||1||5||6||8|
|1944–45||Toronto St. Michael's Majors||M-Cup||—||—||—||—||—||14||6||4||10||12|
|1946–47||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||60||5||13||18||133||11||1||3||4||22|
|1947–48||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||58||7||11||18||118||5||1||2||3||2|
|1948–49||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||60||2||13||15||85||9||2||1||3||8|
|1949–50||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||68||3||14||17||125||7||0||0||0||18|
|1950–51||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||60||3||10||13||142||11||0||1||1||4|
|1951–52||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||65||1||10||11||106||4||0||0||0||8|
|1952–53||Chicago Black Hawks||NHL||68||5||18||23||88||7||1||1||2||6|
|1953–54||Chicago Black Hawks||NHL||68||5||13||18||132||—||—||—||—||—|
|1954–55||Chicago Black Hawks||NHL||65||2||11||13||133||—||—||—||—||—|
|1955–56||Chicago Black Hawks||NHL||52||5||10||15||87||—||—||—||—||—|
|1956–57||Chicago Black Hawks||NHL||70||5||18||23||147||—||—||—||—||—|
|1957–58||Chicago Black Hawks||NHL||67||3||10||13||62||—||—||—||—||—|
|1958–59||Detroit Red Wings||NHL||36||0||1||1||22||—||—||—||—||—|
- "Gus Mortson". legendsofhockey.net. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
- Meharg, Bruce (2005). Legends of the Leafs. Author House. pp. 152–154.
- "Former Maple Leafs defenceman Gus Mortson dies". Toronto Sun. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
|Chicago Black Hawks captain