Old-Time Hockey Photos

Little M Finished Off Where He’d Started

The second player selected in the NHL’s very first amateur draft in 1963, Pete Mahovlich was a lanky, 6-foot-5, 205-pound center who was chosen by the Detroit Red Wings.

The younger brother of NHL all-star forward Frank Mahovlich, aka the Big M, despite his length, Pete would be forever attached to a handle as the Little M. He launched his pro career in 1966-67, splitting the season between the Red Wings and their Pittsburgh Hornets AHL farm club.

With Pittsburgh, Mahovlich’s teammates included a pair of Hall of Famers (Andy Bathgate, Doug Harvey), a future NHL coach (Floyd Smith) an original New York Islander (Craig Cameron) and a guy who was in Slap Shot (John Gofton).

The Wings dealt Mahovlich to the Montreal Canadiens in 1969. He’d win four Stanley Cups in Montreal. In 1997-78, Mahovlich was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins. In 1979, he was acquired for a second tour of duty with the Wings.

By 1982, Mahovlich’s pro career was winding down. He spent the 1982-83 season with Detroit’s AHL farm club, the Adirondack Red Wings.

Though there were no Hall of Famers on his team this time, Mahovlich did skate alongside a future NHL coach (Ted Nolan), an original Washington Capital (Greg Joly) and a guy who was in Slap Shot (Dave Hanson).

Mahovlich would play his last pro hockey in 1985-86. Coach of the IHL Toledo Goaldiggers, he came out of retirement to help the team during a player shortage.


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