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Claire Alexander
Claire alexander.jpg
Born June 16, 1945 (1945-06-16) (age 73)
Collingwood, Ontario, Canada
Height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight 175 lb (79 kg; 12 st 7 lb)
Position Defence
Shoots Right
Played for Toronto Maple Leafs
Vancouver Canucks
Edmonton Oilers (WHA)
Playing career 1973–1981

Claire Alexander (born Arthur Claire Alexander on June 16, 1945) is a Canadian retired professional ice hockey player who played in the National Hockey League (NHL) and World Hockey Association during the 1970s.

Playing CareerEdit

After a brief stint in minor-pro hockey in the mid-1960s, Claire returned home to Ontario and took a job as a milkman while continuing to star with local senior amateur teams.

A skilled defender with a booming shot, he led the Orillia Terriers to the Allan Cup (which is awarded to Canada's top amateur club) in 1973.

The Toronto Maple Leafs talked Claire into giving pro hockey another chance, and he joined their Central Hockey League affiliate, the Oklahoma City Blazers the following year. He was an immediate hit, as he scored 60 points and was named the league's top rookie and top defender.

In the 1974–75 season, Claire was called up to the Toronto Maple Leafs, making his NHL debut at the age of 29. He finished the season with 7 goals (including a hat-trick) and 17 points in 42 games.

Claire spent most of the next two seasons on the Leafs' roster, posting 21 points in 81 games, and made his most notable contribution in the 1976 playoffs with 6 points in 9 games.

For the 1977–78 season, he was traded to the Vancouver Canucks and split the season between the Canucks & their farm team in Tulsa, but he made a substantial contribution with 26 points in just 32 games in Vancouver.

The following season, Claire moved to the WHA with the Edmonton Oilers, posting 31 points on a team featuring Wayne Gretzky in his first professional season. He then spent two seasons playing in Germany before retiring in 1981.

Claire finished his career with 18 goals and 64 points in 155 career NHL games, along with just 36 penalty minutes. He also recorded 8 goals and 31 points in 54 WHA games.

Post-Playing CareerEdit

Following his retirement, Claire served a brief stint as the head coach of Toronto's American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate in St. Catharines.

Career StatisticsEdit

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1965–66 Kitchener Rangers OHA 45 2 15 17 26
1966–67 Knoxville/Johnstown EHL 67 17 20 37 39
1967–68 Collingwood Kings OHA Sr. 40 17 32 49 36
1968–69 Collingwood Kings OHA Sr. 39 30 32 62 16
1971–72 Orillia Terriers OHA Sr. 38 13 28 41 42
1972–73 Orillia Terriers OHA Sr. 41 17 29 46 40
1972–73 Tulsa Oilers CHL 5 5 1 6 9
1973–74 Oklahoma City Blazers CHL 72 23 37 60 34 9 3 4 7 2
1974–75 Oklahoma City Blazers CHL 33 8 17 25 14
1974–75 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 42 7 10 17 12 7 0 0 0 0
1975–76 Oklahoma City Blazers CHL 43 25 31 56 22
1975–76 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 33 2 6 8 6 9 2 4 6 4
1976–77 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 48 1 12 13 12
1977–78 Tulsa Oilers CHL 46 14 42 56 22
1977–78 Vancouver Canucks NHL 32 8 18 26 6
1978–79 Dallas Black Hawks CHL 7 1 2 3 0 6 1 2 3 4
1978–79 Edmonton Oilers WHA 54 8 23 31 16
1979–80 Bad Nauheim Bund 44 32 18 50 96
1980–81 Bad Nauheim Bund 37 17 18 35 48 5 4 1 5 27
NHL totals 155 18 46 64 36 16 2 4 6 4

Personal LifeEdit

Claire's daughter, Buffy-Lynne Williams represented Canada at the Olympics in rowing.