Reg Fleming

Last updated
Reg Fleming
ReggieFleming 07.jpg
Reg Fleming in the penalty box at Madison Square Garden, circa 1965
Born(1936-04-21)April 21, 1936
Montreal, QC, CAN
Died July 11, 2009(2009-07-11) (aged 73)
Arlington Heights, Illinois, U.S.
Height 5 ft 10 in (178 cm)
Weight 190 lb (86 kg; 13 st 8 lb)
Position Defence
Shot Left
Played for Montreal Canadiens
Chicago Black Hawks
Boston Bruins
New York Rangers
Philadelphia Flyers
Buffalo Sabres
Chicago Cougars
Playing career 19561978

Reginald Stephen "Reggie, The Ruffian" Fleming, (April 21, 1936 - July 11, 2009) was a professional hockey player in the National Hockey League with the Montreal Canadiens, Chicago Black Hawks, Boston Bruins, New York Rangers, Philadelphia Flyers and Buffalo Sabres. He also played for the Chicago Cougars of the World Hockey Association, as well as with a number of minor league teams in other professional leagues. His professional career spanned over 20 years. He was known as an aggressive and combative player who could play both forward and defence, as well as kill penalties.

National Hockey League North American professional ice hockey league

The National Hockey League is a professional ice hockey league in North America, currently comprising 31 teams: 24 in the United States and 7 in Canada. The NHL is considered to be the premier professional ice hockey league in the world, and one of the major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada. The Stanley Cup, the oldest professional sports trophy in North America, is awarded annually to the league playoff champion at the end of each season.

Montreal Canadiens National Hockey League team in Montreal, Quebec, Canada

The Montreal Canadiens are a professional ice hockey team based in Montreal, Quebec. They are members of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL).

Chicago Blackhawks hockey team of the National Hockey League

The Chicago Blackhawks are a professional ice hockey team based in Chicago, Illinois. They are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). They have won six Stanley Cup championships since their founding in 1926. The Blackhawks are one of the "Original Six" NHL teams along with the Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs, Boston Bruins and New York Rangers. Since 1994, the club's home rink is the United Center, which they share with the National Basketball Association's Chicago Bulls. The club had previously played for 65 years at Chicago Stadium.


Before the NHL

After a junior career during which he spent two seasons with the Montreal Junior Canadiens of the Quebec Junior Hockey League (QJHL) and one year with St. Michael's of the Ontario Hockey Association (OHA), Fleming began his minor-pro career in the Habs' farm system with Shawinigan of the Quebec Senior Hockey League, followed by stops in Rochester of the American Hockey League and Kingston of the Eastern Professional Hockey League. His rugged style of play earned him a three-game tryout with the Canadiens late in the 1959-60 NHL season. That summer Montreal and the Chicago Black Hawks made a nine player trade which made Fleming a member of the Black Hawks.

Montreal Junior Canadiens ice hockey team

The Montreal Junior Canadiens were a junior ice hockey team in the Quebec Junior Hockey League from 1933 to 1961, and the Ontario Hockey Association from 1961 to 1972. They played out of the Montreal Forum in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League sports league

The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League is one of the three major junior ice hockey leagues which constitute the Canadian Hockey League. The league comprises teams across the provinces of Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. Since the departure of the Lewiston Maineiacs from Lewiston, Maine, the QMJHL is the only one of the three member leagues of the CHL that does not currently have teams located in the United States. The current president of the QMJHL is Gilles Courteau.

Toronto St. Michaels Majors

The Toronto St. Michael's Majors were a major junior ice hockey team in the Ontario Hockey League, based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The most recent franchise was revived on August 15, 1996. In 2007, the team relocated to Mississauga, Ontario and became the Mississauga St. Michael's Majors until 2012. The hockey program was founded and operated by St. Michael's College School in 1906, and adopted the name "Majors" in 1934, and was commonly referred to as St. Mike's Majors.

Pro career

Fleming played four full seasons on a talented Chicago club alongside stars like Bobby Hull, Stan Mikita, Glenn Hall and Pierre Pilote. Fleming's aggressive style of play added an important physical presence to the Blackhawks and helped the team win the Stanley Cup for the 1960–61 season, which was Fleming's first in Chicago. Fleming scored an important goal in the final game of the NHL finals against Detroit that year. He assisted on Bobby Hull's 50th goal the following season, helping Hull match the NHL record. A popular player with Chicago, he was known for his grit and team spirit. His involvement in a number of notorious incidents gave him a reputation around the league as a tough customer and an intense competitor. [1]

Bobby Hull Canadian ice hockey player

Robert Marvin Hull, OC is a Canadian former ice hockey player who is regarded as one of the greatest players of all time. His blonde hair, legendary skating speed, end to end rushes, and the ability to shoot the puck at very high velocity, were all a part of the player known as "The Golden Jet". His talents were such that one or two opposing players were often assigned just to shadow him—a tribute to his explosiveness.

Stan Mikita Slovak-born Canadian ice hockey player

Stanley Mikita was a Slovak-born Canadian professional ice hockey player for the Chicago Black Hawks of the National Hockey League, generally regarded as the best centre of the 1960s. In 2017, he was named one of the 100 Greatest NHL Players.

Glenn Hall Canadian ice hockey player

Glenn Henry "Mr. Goalie" Hall is a former professional ice hockey goaltender. During his National Hockey League career with the Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Black Hawks, and St. Louis Blues, Hall seldom missed a game and was a consistent performer, winning the Vezina Trophy, which at the time was awarded to the goaltender on the team allowing the fewest goals against, three times, being voted the First Team All-Star goaltender a record seven times, and winning the Calder Memorial Trophy as best rookie. Nicknamed "Mr. Goalie", he was the first goaltender to develop and make effective use of the butterfly style of goalkeeping. In 2017 Hall was named one of the '100 Greatest NHL Players' in history. He is the grandfather of Grant Stevenson.

Prior to the 1964-65 season, Chicago dealt Fleming to the Boston Bruins. Boston primarily used Fleming as a forward and he recorded personal highs of 18 goals and 23 assists for the 1964-65 season. Midway through the next season, he was traded to the New York Rangers. He would spend the remainder of that year and the following three with a rapidly improving Ranger club. Although a popular and consistent performer with the Rangers, he was sent to the Philadelphia Flyers for the 1969-70 season. His experience and combativeness helped the small and unaggressive Flyers team. Left unprotected in the 1970 expansion draft, Fleming joined the Buffalo Sabres, where he recorded his career high in penalty minutes in 1970-71, his last NHL season.

After minor league stints with the Cincinnati Swords (AHL) and the Salt Lake Golden Eagles (WHL) in 1971-72, Fleming returned to Chicago, joining the Cougars of the newly formed WHA. After scoring 23 goals and playing his usual rugged style in 1972-73, injuries began to reduce his effectiveness the following season, his final season in the WHA. After playing for a few more seasons in the minors in the mid-western United States, Fleming retired in 1978.

Cincinnati Swords

The Cincinnati Swords were an American Hockey League team that played at the Cincinnati Gardens in Cincinnati, Ohio from 1971 to 1974. They were owned by and the affiliate of the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League

Salt Lake Golden Eagles

The Salt Lake Golden Eagles were a minor professional hockey team based in Salt Lake City from 1969 to 1994.


While recovering from a stroke and heart attack Fleming resided at the Claremont Rehab and Living Center for 5 years where he died. During this time his son, Chris Fleming, filmed his situation and conversations in the hope of reaching his father's fans through YouTube and the internet. Touchingly, they documented Fleming's battle with ill-health and attempt to recollect his fondest memories. Fleming died at Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights, Illinois on July 11, 2009. [1] Six months after his death, neuropathologists at Boston University disclosed that he had chronic traumatic encephalopathy (C.T.E.). He was the first hockey player known to have been tested for the disease, which had been mainly associated with boxing and American football. [2] He has two surviving children Chris Fleming and Kelly Fleming.

YouTube video-sharing service owned by Google

YouTube is an American video-sharing website headquartered in San Bruno, California. Three former PayPal employees—Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim—created the service in February 2005. Google bought the site in November 2006 for US$1.65 billion; YouTube now operates as one of Google's subsidiaries.

NCH is an acute care hospital in Arlington Heights, Illinois, United States. Opened in 1959, Northwest Community Hospital serves more than 350,000 outpatients from Chicago's northwest suburbs each year and more than 20,000 inpatients treated annually at the 489-bed acute care hospital in Arlington Heights. The hospital is designated as a Primary Stroke Center. NCH has four Immediate Care locations in the northwest suburbs and operates an NCH Easy Access walk-in clinic in Palatine. NCH has a medical staff of more than 1,000 physicians, which includes the board-certified primary care doctors and specialists of the NCH Medical Group.

Arlington Heights, Illinois Village in Illinois, United States

Arlington Heights is a village in Cook County in the U.S. state of Illinois. A suburb of Chicago, it lies about 25 miles (40 km) northwest of the city's downtown. The population was 75,101 at the 2010 census. It is the most populous community in the United States that is incorporated as a "village", although it is not far ahead of its nearby Illinois neighboring villages of Schaumburg and adjacent Palatine.

Related Research Articles

Marc Bergevin French Canadian professional hockey defenceman

Marc Bergevin is a Canadian professional ice hockey executive and former player. He is currently the general manager of the Montreal Canadiens of the National Hockey League (NHL). Bergevin played as a defenceman in the NHL.

The 1959–60 NHL season was the 43rd season of the National Hockey League. The Montreal Canadiens were the Stanley Cup winners as they defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs four games to none for their fifth straight Stanley Cup.

The 1979–80 NHL season was the 63rd season of the National Hockey League. This season saw the addition of four teams from the disbanded World Hockey Association as expansion franchises. The Edmonton Oilers, Winnipeg Jets, New England Whalers, and Quebec Nordiques joined the NHL, bringing the total to 21 teams. The other two WHA teams were paid to disband.

The 1967–68 NHL season was the 51st season of the National Hockey League. The league expanded to 12 teams, putting the new six in the newly created West Division, while the original six were all placed in the newly created East Division. The regular season schedule was expanded to 74 games per team. The Montreal Canadiens won the Stanley Cup against the new St. Louis Blues, in four games.

The 1962–63 NHL season was the 46th season of the National Hockey League. Six teams each played 70 games. The Toronto Maple Leafs won their second Stanley Cup in a row as they defeated the Detroit Red Wings four games to one.

The 1963–64 NHL season was the 47th season of the National Hockey League. Six teams each played 70 games. The Toronto Maple Leafs won their third consecutive Stanley Cup by defeating the Detroit Red Wings four games to three in the final series.

The 1964–65 NHL season was the 48th season of the National Hockey League. Six teams each played 70 games. Jean Beliveau was the winner of the newly introduced Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player during the playoffs. The Montreal Canadiens won their first Stanley Cup since 1960 as they were victorious over the Chicago Black Hawks in a seven-game final series.

Bradley Lorne Brown is a Canadian retired professional ice hockey defenceman.

The 1968–69 NHL season was the 52nd season of the National Hockey League. Twelve teams each played 76 games. For the second time in a row, the Montreal Canadiens faced the St. Louis Blues in the Stanley Cup finals. Montreal won their second consecutive Stanley Cup as they swept the Blues in four, an identical result to the previous season.

The 1972–73 NHL season was the 56th season of the National Hockey League. Sixteen teams each played 78 games. Two new teams, the New York Islanders and the Atlanta Flames, made their debuts. The Montreal Canadiens won the Stanley Cup by beating the Chicago Black Hawks four games to two in the Stanley Cup Final.

The 1971–72 NHL season was the 55th season of the National Hockey League. Fourteen teams each played 78 games. The Boston Bruins beat the New York Rangers four games to two for their second Stanley Cup in three seasons in the finals.

The 1970–71 NHL season was the 54th season of the National Hockey League. Two new teams, the Buffalo Sabres and Vancouver Canucks made their debuts and were both put into the East Division. The Chicago Black Hawks were moved to the West Division. The Montreal Canadiens won the Stanley Cup by beating the Black Hawks in seven games in the finals.

The 1973–74 NHL season was the 57th season of the National Hockey League. The Philadelphia Flyers won the Stanley Cup championship, the team's first. The team was the first of the post-1967 teams to win the Cup.

The 1975–76 NHL season was the 59th season of the National Hockey League. The Montreal Canadiens won the Stanley Cup, defeating the defending champion Philadelphia Flyers in the final.

The 1977–78 NHL season was the 61st season of the National Hockey League. The Montreal Canadiens won their third Stanley Cup in a row, defeating the Boston Bruins four games to two in the Stanley Cup Finals.

The 1978–79 NHL season was the 62nd season of the National Hockey League. The Montreal Canadiens beat the New York Rangers in the Stanley Cup finals four games to one for their fourth consecutive Cup. The Cleveland Barons merged with the Minnesota North Stars, reducing the NHL membership to 17 teams; the last time that the NHL contracted. In the 1978–79 season, two of the "Original Six" teams met in the Finals, which would not occur again until 2013. The Boston Bruins joined the Canadiens and Rangers in the 1978–79 semifinals and marked the last appearance by three Original Six teams in the final four until 2014.

Ab McDonald Canadian ice hockey player

Alvin Brian "Ab" McDonald was a Canadian ice hockey forward.

Robert Richard Sheehan is a retired National Hockey League center.

The 1967–68 Chicago Black Hawks season was the Hawks' 42nd season in the NHL. The team was coming off their best regular season in team history. In 1966–67, Chicago finished in first place for the first time in club history with a franchise record 94 points. The Black Hawks were then upset by the Toronto Maple Leafs in six games in the NHL semi-finals.

Phillip Danault Canadian ice hockey player

Phillip Danault is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward who is currently playing for the Montreal Canadiens of the National Hockey League (NHL).


  1. 1 2 Mitchell, Fred (July 12, 2009). "Former Chicago Blackhawk Reggie Fleming dies at 73". Chicago Tribune.
  2. Schwarz, Alan; Klein, Jeff Z. (December 18, 2009). "Brain Damage Found in Hockey Player". The New York Times.