Was looking through the scans I have of well-intentioned forwards, some even with reputations for skill, who couldn't put the puck in the ocean if they were standing on the shore.
But this is not the time for that.
No - this is the time to admire a truly horrific photo and say with the smugness afforded by 36 years of separation, "What on earth were they thinking?"
To top it off, Denis Dupere actually WAS a well-intentioned forward who could skate, work really hard and not score a whole ton.
Denis Dupere came to the Leafs as the last piece of the trade that sent Tim Horton to the Rangers. Despite Stafford Smythe's visions of riches coming the Leafs' way in exchange for their best defenseman, they netted only journeyman minor-leaguer Guy Trottier and Denis, two years out of junior but without an NHL game to his credit.
Denis had good size and could skate and he carved himself a pretty solid niche with the Leafs as a defensive forward and penalty-killer. A hard worker and a guy who could handle the puck even if he wasn't scoring a ton with it, he had his share of fans. After 1973-74, with the Leafs becoming better-stocked with young talent, Denis was left exposed in the 1974 Expansion Draft, going to Washington.
With those Capitals, a player who'd be a third-liner on most teams got first-line minutes and Denis scored 20 goals for Washington and represented them at the All-Star game. That same season, he'd be dealt to St. Louis, and from there to Kansas City/Colorado, making him the first to play for both of the '74 Expansion teams, and the Rockies to boot.
|1970-71||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||20||1||2||3||4||-1||6||0||0||0||0|
|1971-72||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||77||7||10||17||4||+5||5||0||0||0||0|
|1972-73||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||61||13||23||36||10||-4|
|1973-74||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||34||8||9||17||8||+3||3||0||0||0||0|
|1974-75||St. Louis Blues||NHL||22||3||6||9||8||+4|
|1975-76||Kansas City Scouts||NHL||43||6||8||14||16||-8|
|1976-77||Rhode Island Reds||AHL||4||3||3||6||0|
|1979-80||Nelson Maple Leafs||WIHL||10||2||5||7|
Played in NHL All-Star Game (1975)
- Traded to Toronto by NY Rangers to complete transaction that sent Tim Horton to NY Rangers, (March 3, 1970), May 14, 1970.
- Claimed by Washington from Toronto in Expansion Draft, June 12, 1974.
- Traded to St. Louis by Washington for Garnet Bailey and Stan Gilbertson, February 10, 1975.
- Traded to Kansas City by St. Louis with Craig Patrick and cash for Lynn Powis and Kansas City's 2nd round choice (Brian Sutter) in 1976 Amateur Draft, June 18, 1975.
- Transferred to Colorado when Kansas City franchise relocated, July 15, 1976.
The HHOF take on Denis:
"Denis Dupere keeps a picture of his crowning NHL moment on the wall in his kitchen. The native of Jonquiere, Quebec, in Maple Leaf blue, is seen leaping past sprawling Canadiens' netminder Rogie Vachon in celebration of his first-ever NHL goal.
Dupere made the journeyman's march to the big leagues via the Kitchener Rangers of the OHA and the Omaha Knights of the Central Hockey League. By 1970, the Leafs acquired the weighty winger for third- and fourth-line duty. Dupere was a defensive specialist who had a knack for winning face-offs and could effectively deceive goaltenders with his strong wrist shot off the wrong foot.
In 1974, Dupere joined the Washington Capitals where he scored twenty goals and fulfilled a dream as the Caps choice for the All-Star game. "I was shaking when I hit the ice," he recalled. "Seeing all those guys?Lafleur, Dryden, Esposito, Orr. You can't beat a thrill like that!"
Dupere's career wound down with stops in St. Louis, Kansas City and finally, in Colorado where he retired in 1978. After the NHL, Dupere played briefly in France."