Smokey Harris

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Smokey Harris
Smoky Harris, Vancouver Millionaires.jpg
Smokey Harris with the 1913–14 Vancouver Millionaires.
Born(1890-10-11)October 11, 1890
Port Arthur, Ontario, Canada
Died June 4, 1974(1974-06-04) (aged 83)
Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight 165 lb (75 kg; 11 st 11 lb)
Position Left Wing/Rover
Shot Left
Played for Vancouver Millionaires
Portland Rosebuds
Vancouver Maroons
Seattle Metropolitans
Boston Bruins
Edmonton Eskimos
Playing career 19111932

Thomas Wilfred "Smokey, Fred" Harris (October 11, 1890 – June 4, 1974) was a Canadian professional ice hockey player. Harris played in the Pacific Coast Hockey Association (PCHA), the National Hockey League (NHL) and the Western Canada Hockey League (WCHL). Harris was born in Port Arthur, Ontario. His brother Henry was also a professional ice hockey player. Harris scored the first goal in Boston Bruins' franchise history.


Hockey career

Harris with the Portland Rosebuds. Smokey Harris Portland Rosebuds.jpeg
Harris with the Portland Rosebuds.

Harris first played senior hockey with the Kenora Thistles in the 1909–10 season. In 1911, he joined the Vancouver Millionaires of the PCHA, playing three seasons before being traded to the Portland Rosebuds before the 1914–15 season. He played four seasons for Portland but abandoned the team after the final season (1917–18) to join the army. [1]

Portland won the PCHA championship in 1916, briefly taking over the Stanley Cup before losing it in the 1916 Stanley Cup Finals to the Montreal Canadiens. After Portland folded, Harris returned to the Millionaires, playing another five seasons. With Vancouver, Harris played in the 1921 and 1923 Stanley Cup series, both times against the Ottawa Senators.

After one season with the Seattle Metropolitans, he was traded to the Boston Bruins of the NHL, scoring the Bruins' first-ever NHL goal on December 1, 1924 in the team's NHL debut game against the other NHL expansion team that year, the Montreal Maroons. [2] Harris's second-period goal tied the game 1-1. Boston prevailed 2-1. Harris played six games for the Bruins before being traded again, to the Vancouver Maroons of the WCHL, the renamed Millionaires franchise.

After one season with Vancouver, Harris moved to California where, except for 1926–27 where he played for the Edmonton Eskimos of the Prairie League, he played out his career for teams in Los Angeles and San Francisco in the California Pro League. His final season was 1931–32 for the San Francisco Rangers. He was briefly playing coach for the Los Angeles Richfield Oil in 1925–26, and coached a full season for the Hollywood Millionaires in 1929–30.

Playing style

Fred Harris played primarily as a left winger, where he would make good use of his speed skating down the rink side. Vancouver Daily World prior to the 1921–22 PCHA season described Harris' rushes along the boards in "famous 'fly-on-the-wall'" terms. [3] He was not only a capable goalscorer but also a strong set-up man, which he showed during the 1920–21 PCHA season where his 17 assists led the league and helped him to a shared first place in the overall scoring race (32 points) with Frank Fredrickson of the Victoria Aristocrats. He also co-led (with Art Duncan) the PCHA in assists during the 1923–24 PCHA season with 10 helpers.

Harris also played occasionally as a rover, an archaic position between the offensive defenceman and the centre forward position, where he would display more defensive responsibilities. A match report in the Vancouver Daily World from the 1919–20 PCHA season, covering a game between the Vancouver Millionaires and the Seattle Metropolitans, described Harris' use of the hook-check in breaking up Seattle attacks with the characteristic sweeping motion of the stick along the ice. [4]

Career statistics

Caricature of Smokey Harris with the Vancouver Millionaires, 1919. Smokey Harris Carciature.png
Caricature of Smokey Harris with the Vancouver Millionaires, 1919.

Regular season and playoffs

Regular season Playoffs
Season TeamLeagueGP G A Pts PIM GPGAPtsPIM
1910–11 Kenora Thistles MHL 6130132303
1911–12 Vancouver Millionaires PCHA 1540455
1912–13 Vancouver MillionairesPCHA161462061
1913–14 Vancouver MillionairesPCHA151431733
1914–15 Portland Rosebuds PCHA181431739
1915–16 Portland RosebudsPCHA181061675
1915–16 Portland Rosebuds St-Cup 540421
1916–17 Portland RosebudsPCHA2318133139
1917–18 Portland RosebudsPCHA8651119
1918–19 Vancouver MillionairesPCHA20196251922023
1919–20 Vancouver MillionairesPCHA221411251220110
1920–21 Vancouver MillionairesPCHA24151732626280
1920–21 Vancouver MillionairesSt-Cup52136
1921–22 Vancouver MillionairesPCHA231041421
1922–23 Vancouver Maroons PCHA20106162620000
1922–23 Vancouver MaroonsSt-Cup41018
1923–24 Seattle Metropolitans PCHA30810183020004
1924–25 Boston Bruins NHL 63148
1924–25 Vancouver Maroons WCHL 1401116
1926–27 Edmonton Eskimos PrHL 3212122468
1927–28Los Angeles Richfield Oil Cal-Pro 211051526
1928–29San Francisco TigersCal-Pro3613132643
1929–30Hollywood MillionairesCal-Pro427121928
1930–31San Francisco TigersCal-Pro3181018
1931–32San Francisco RangersCal-Pro303811
PCHA totals252156902464161083117
NHL totals63148



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  1. "Alec Irvin, Winnipeg, and Fred Harris Are Signed By Patrick for Vancouver – Harris With Vancouver". The Vancouver Daily World, December 23, 1918 (pg. 10).
  2. Pelletier, Joseph (June 2011). "Joe Pelletier's Greatest Hockey - Smokey Harris". Retrieved November 24, 2016.
  3. "Three players have signed up". The Vancouver Daily World, November 8, 1921 (pg. 8).
  4. "Vancouver Scores Great Victory Over Seattle Metropolitans, 3 to 2 – Skinner Makes Great Showing". The Vancouver Daily World, January 6, 1920 (pg. 10).