||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2013)|
|Hockey Hall of Fame, 1982|
July 1, 1941 |
Montreal, QC, CAN
|Height||5 ft 9 in (175 cm)|
|Weight||175 lb (79 kg; 12 st 7 lb)|
|Played for||New York Rangers|
Rodrigue Gabriel Gilbert (born July 1, 1941) is a retired Canadian professional ice hockey forward who played for the New York Rangers in the National Hockey League. He played right wing on the GAG (goal-a-game) line that also featured Vic Hadfield and Jean Ratelle. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1982, and was the first player in New York Rangers history to have his number retired. Rod currently works for the New York Rangers Organization.
During the 1959–60 OHA season, he slipped on some garbage strewn onto the ice and fell back into the boards. He broke the fifth verterbra in his back and doctors were worried they might have to amputate his legs when blood clots ensued. Gilbert started his career with the Rangers after finishing his junior career with the Guelph Royals during the 1960–61 season.
It did not take long for Gilbert to become popular with the Garden faithful, and he did not disappoint as he rose in prominence as an NHL star. However, it was not without pain. In 1965–66, his career was nearly derailed when he went through a second spinal fusion operation. This surgery was performed by Dr. Kazuo Yanagisawa. He lost half a season, but he bounced back with a strong season in 1966–1967. On February 24, 1968, he established himself as a bona fide NHL star as he scored four goals in a game against the Montreal Canadiens. It was stardom from there. The Ratelle-Hadfield-Gilbert line, called the GAG (Goal-A-Game) line, would terrorize enemy goaltenders for years. He was with Team Canada when they took on the Soviets in the 1972 Summit Series. He won the Bill Masterton Trophy in 1976 for his perseverance regarding his back troubles.
At the beginning of the 1977–78 NHL season, Gilbert and Rangers' General Manager John Ferguson got into a contract dispute. When Gilbert finally returned to play, he was no longer the Gilbert of old. He retired after 19 seasons, having never led the Rangers to a Stanley Cup. His number 7 was retired by the Rangers on October 14, 1979; Gilbert's #7 was the first number to be retired by the Rangers. In 1969 he owned his first restaurant. After his playing career was over, he opened his own restaurant 'Gilbert's' on Third Avenue near 75th street in Manhattan.
Awards and honors
- Named to the NHL Second All-Star Team (1967–68)
- Named to the NHL First All-Star Team (1971–72)
- Won Bill Masterton Trophy (1976)
- Won Lester Patrick Trophy (1991)
- Played in NHL All-Star Game (1964, 1965, 1967, 1969, 1970, 1972, 1975, 1977)
- Inducted into Hockey Hall of Fame in 1982
- Ranked No. 2 on the all-time list of New York Rangers in the book 100 Ranger Greats (John Wiley & Sons, 2009).
- Has his #7 Retired at Madison Square Garden, the first Ranger to receive the honor.
- In 2010, he was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor in recognition of his humanitarian efforts.
- New York Rangers team record for career goals (406)
- New York Rangers team record for career points (1021)
- New York Rangers team record for games played by a forward (1065)
- Shares New York Rangers team record for assists in one game (5 three times)
|1960–61||New York Rangers||NHL||1||0||1||1||2||—||—||—||—||—|
|1961–62||New York Rangers||NHL||1||0||0||0||0||4||2||3||5||4|
|1962–63||New York Rangers||NHL||70||11||20||31||20||—||—||—||—||—|
|1963–64||New York Rangers||NHL||70||24||40||64||62||—||—||—||—||—|
|1964–65||New York Rangers||NHL||70||25||36||61||52||—||—||—||—||—|
|1965–66||New York Rangers||NHL||34||10||15||25||20||—||—||—||—||—|
|1966–67||New York Rangers||NHL||64||28||18||46||12||4||2||2||4||6|
|1967–68||New York Rangers||NHL||73||29||48||77||12||6||5||0||5||4|
|1968–69||New York Rangers||NHL||66||28||49||77||22||4||1||0||1||2|
|1969–70||New York Rangers||NHL||72||16||37||53||22||6||4||5||9||0|
|1970–71||New York Rangers||NHL||78||30||31||61||65||13||4||6||10||8|
|1971–72||New York Rangers||NHL||73||43||54||97||64||16||7||8||15||11|
|1972–73||New York Rangers||NHL||76||25||59||84||25||10||5||1||6||2|
|1973–74||New York Rangers||NHL||75||36||41||77||20||13||3||5||8||4|
|1974–75||New York Rangers||NHL||76||36||61||97||22||3||1||3||4||2|
|1975–76||New York Rangers||NHL||70||36||50||86||32||—||—||—||—||—|
|1976–77||New York Rangers||NHL||77||27||48||75||50||—||—||—||—||—|
|1977–78||New York Rangers||NHL||19||2||7||9||6||—||—||—||—||—|
- Member of Team Canada in the 1972 Summit Series.
- Member of Team Canada in the 1977 World Championships
Gilbert is one of ten athletes who were featured in American artist Andy Warhol's 1979 Athlete Series of paintings that featured prominent sports figures from the 1970s. Others appearing include O.J. Simpson, Chris Evert and Pelé. [dead link]
- Kreiser & Friedman. 'The New York Rangers: Broadway's Longest Running Hit'. Sports Publishing LLC, 1996
- Total Hockey (Second Edition), Editor - Dan Diamond, ISBN 1-892129-85-X
- Hockey Stars of 1969 by Stan Fischler
- Hockey '75 by Hal Bock
- Rod Gilbert's official web site
- Rod Gilbert's career statistics at The Internet Hockey Database
- Rod Gilbert's biography at Legends of Hockey