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Holt in 1977
January 15, 1953 |
Pembroke, ON, CAN
|Height||5 ft 11 in (180 cm)|
|Weight||185 lb (84 kg; 13 st 3 lb)|
|Played for||Chicago Black Hawks
Los Angeles Kings
|NHL Draft||45th overall, 1973
Chicago Black Hawks
|WHA Draft||41st overall, 1973
New England Whalers
Stewart Randall Holt (born January 15, 1953 in Pembroke, Ontario) is a retired Canadian professional ice hockey defenceman who spent 10 seasons in the National Hockey League. Known as one of the toughest players in the sport during his career, he still holds the NHL single-game record for penalty minutes.
After playing his junior hockey with the Sudbury Wolves, Holt was selected 45th overall in the 1973 NHL Amateur Draft by the Chicago Black Hawks. He would spend most of the next four seasons in the Central Hockey League with the Dallas Black Hawks, Chicago's top minor league affiliate, although he was a frequent callup to Chicago, appearing in 42 games over that stretch. He established himself as one of the toughest players in minor pro, recording a CHL record 411 penalty minutes in 1974–75, but also showed a fair amount of skill and was named a CHL First-Team All-Star in 1976 after scoring 52 points from the blueline.
Just after the start of the 1977–78 season, Holt was dealt to the lowly Cleveland Barons and finally received a chance to stick in the NHL full-time. He finished the season with 1 goal and 5 points in 52 games, along with 249 penalty minutes. At the end of the season, however, the Barons ceased operations and Holt was claimed by the Vancouver Canucks in the resulting dispersal draft.
Holt appeared in only 22 games for the Canucks before being dealt to the Los Angeles Kings mid-way through the 1978–79 campaign. He finished the season with 1 goal and 9 assists for a career high 10 points, along with 282 penalty minutes, in 58 games between Los Angeles and Vancouver. Included in his penalty total was an NHL record 67 in a March 11, 1979 game against the Philadelphia Flyers.
After another season in Los Angeles, Holt was traded to the Calgary Flames for the 1980–81 season. He would play some of the best hockey of his career in the 1981 playoffs, recording 2 goals and 4 points in 13 games to help the Flames reach the Stanley Cup semi-finals. For the 1981–82 season, he was dealt to the Washington Capitals, where he would set a club record with 250 penalty minutes. He broke his own record with a league-leading 275 penalty minutes the following season, and also appeared in a career-high 70 games, recording 8 assists. He closed out his career with a 26-game stint for the Philadelphia Flyers in 1983–84 before retiring.
In 395 NHL games, Holt scored just 4 goals and 37 assists, and amassed 1,438 penalty minutes.
His older brother Gary Holt also played in the NHL during the 1970s.
March 11, 1979
The toughest player on the Los Angeles Kings, Holt had been acquired mid-way through the 1978–79 season to add muscle to a skilled Kings team, and was expected to be a factor when the team travelled to Philadelphia to face off against the fearsome Flyers. After picking up a minor penalty early in the first period, Holt fought Philadelphia enforcer Frank Bathe at 14:58 of the first period, picking up 20 minutes in penalties. However, Holt felt that he had been a victim of a cheap shot from Flyers' agitator Ken Linseman earlier in the game, and at the end of the first period instigated a bench-clearing brawl in an attempt to settle the score with Linseman. He was assessed a further 45 minutes in penalties for his actions during the brawl, including a triple game misconduct, bringing his game total to 67, shattering the previous NHL record of 52 set by Jim Dorey in 1968. He was also suspended three games by the league for his actions.