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Al Arbour's career numbers are unmatched

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Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Biography

  • Born November 1, 1932, in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada (Age 82).

  • Played 14 seasons in NHL as a defenseman with Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks, Toronto Maple Leafs and St. Louis Blues.

  • Was a member of four Stanley Cup championship teams as player (Red Wings in 1953-54, Blackhawks in 1960-61, and Maple Leafs in 1961-62 and 1963-64, though he did not play in the postseason for Detroit).

  • Began NHL coaching career with Blues during the 1970-71 season after his retirement as a player that same season.

  • Became New York Islanders head coach before the 1973-74 season.

  • Guided the Islanders to four consecutive Stanley Cup championships from 1979-80 through 1982-83 (the only time a U.S.-based franchise has won four straight Stanley Cup titles).

  • From 1979-80 through the team’s loss in the 1984 Stanley Cup finals to the Edmonton Oilers, Arbour coached the Islanders to an NHL-record 19 straight playoff series victories.

  • Stepped down as Islanders head coach following the 1985-86 season, but returned as the team’s head coach in 1988-89 and stayed on through the 1993-94 season.

  • Coach of the last Islanders team to win a playoff series when they knocked off the two-time Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins in the 1993 Patrick Division finals (the franchise has lost seven series since).

  • Returned behind the Islanders’ bench for one more game (a victory over the Penguins) in November of 2007, his 1,500th game as Islanders head coach.

  • Won Jack Adams Award as NHL Coach of the Year in 1979.

  • Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1996.

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