Hall of Famer
Inducted in 1960
Stanley Cup - Montreal Canadiens
Jack Laviolette typified Canadian athletes of the early years of the 20th century. Like many of his contemporaries, he specialized in more than one sport—lacrosse and hockey, in Laviolette's case—and he rose to athletic prominence at a time when professional leagues were overtaking amateur organizations as the dominant form of sport in Canada. While playing amateur hockey in Montreal at the turn of the last century, Laviolette joined both the lacrosse and hockey teams of the Nationals club in Montreal who participated in local and national amateur competition in both sports. He left in 1904 to play professional hockey in the United States, but he returned to Montreal and the Nationals in 1907. Laviolette and two other well-known lacrosse-and-hockey-playing teammates, Newsy Lalonde and Didier Pitre, were the mainstays of a strong Nationals squad. In 1910, the team travelled to British Columbia in an ultimately unsuccessful challenge against the New Westminster Salmonbellies for the Minto Cup. Inducted into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame for his contributions to lacrosse, Laviolette is equally remembered for his hockey career. He began playing amateur hockey in Montreal in 1899 with the Montreal Overland juniors and CP Telegraphs before joining the Nationals. In 1904, he was lured to the Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, team in the International Hockey League, hockey's first all-professional league. He played there for four seasons and was team captain in 1906. Laviolette returned to Montreal after the IHL disbanded in 1907 and played for the Montreal Shamrocks. A new professional hockey league—the National Hockey Association, precursor to the NHL—was formed in 1909. Laviolette was enlisted to play for, as well as recruit and manage a new club, the Montreal Canadiens. He spent nine seasons playing for the Canadiens—in both the NHA and NHL—alongside lacrosse teammates Lalonde and Pitre. In 1916, he was a member of the Canadiens' first-ever Stanley Cup-winning team. A car accident, which led to the amputation of his right foot, ended his playing career. For his role in founding the NHL's most successful franchise, Laviolette was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1962.