January 13, 1913|
New Bedford, MA, USA
|Died||December 5, 1989(aged 76)|
|Height||5 ft 11 in (180 cm)|
|Weight||200 lb (91 kg; 14 st 4 lb)|
|Played for||Pittsburgh Hornets
|National team||United States|
|Representing United States|
|1934 Milan, Italy|
Peter Angelo "Pete" Bessone (January 13, 1913 – December 5, 1989) was a retired ice hockey player. Bessone played in the American Hockey League with the Cleveland Barons, Providence Reds, Pittsburgh Hornets and Springfield Indians of the International Hockey League. He was inducted into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame in 1978.
As a high school student, Pete Bessone was a three-sport athlete at West Springfield, High, playing football, baseball and, ice hockey. Following his completion of high school Bessone began his hockey career locally playing in Springfield, Massachusetts for the West Side Ranges. In 1931 Bessone left the united States to play hockey in France, he joined the Rapides de Paris, leading to a very successful French career. While playing for Stade Français, Bessone was considered the top hockey draw in France and some even called him the Babe Ruth of hockey in Paris.
In 1934 Bessone represented the United States at the World Championships in Milan, Italy. In the semi-final versus Germany, Bessone scored two of the US' three goals. The Americans took the Silver medal finishing only behind Canada.
Return to the States
Following the 1936 season Bessone returned from France, with the intention of playing professionally in North America. Bessone joined the Pittsburgh Yellowjackets of the EAHL, where he scored six goals and 10 points through 47 games. He so impressed that season that he was offered a contract by the NHL's Detroit Red Wings. Bassone began the 1937-38 season with Detroit Pontiacs, a Red Wings' farm team. Thanks to an injury to Wing's defensemen Ebbie Goodfellow Bessone was called up, making his debut on January 16, 1938 against the Montreal Maroons. After his debut Bessone was believed to be a solid prospect. However after only six games with The Red Wings and 15 with the Pontiacs Bassone was sent to the Pittsburgh Hornets of the AHL, he would never play in the NHL again.
Bessone continued to play for the Hornets for the next five years. In 1942 Bessone was selected to start in the AHL's first All-star game. The game was held in Cleveland, Ohio, with the intent of to raise money in support of American and Canadian armed forces serving in World War II, the contest raised $4,132 towards this goal. Bessone's long tenure in Pittsburgh finally came to a close in 1943 when the Hornets traded Bessone to the Cleveland Barons for defensemen Fred Robertson.
Bessone sent thee seasons in Cleveland. His short time with the Barons however saw the high point of Bessone's career, as the Barons won the 1944-45 Calder Cup as league champions. It was the only North American Championship Bessone would win. After his time in Cleveland Bessone spent one more year in the AHL playing for the Providence Reds.
Post playing career
In 1947 Bessone returned to France to be the head coach of the Paris Racing Club hockey team. He coached them for two season before returning to the states to coach the Springfield Indians of the IHL he would play 4 games as a player-coach. Following the 1949-50 season Bessone retired from hockey for good.
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