1969 NHL Amateur Draft Pick
Round Overall
3 25
Gilles Gilbert
Selected by Minnesota from London (OHA)
Minnesota North Stars London Knights
Gilles Gilbert

6-foot-0, 175 pounds

Left-hand catcher


Pre-Draft Statistics

Year Team League GP W-L-T GAA SO SV%
1966-67 Tr-Rivieres QJHL 43 23-18-2 4.44 1 n/a
1967-68 Tr-Rivieres QJHL 46 -- 4.30 - --
1968-69 London OHA 37 13-15-7 4.55 1 n/a

Pre-Draft Notes

Played for Thetford Mines in 1967 Memorial Cup tournament.
Canadian • Born March 31, 1949 in St. Esprit, Quebec • Hometown: Quebec City, Quebec

Career Vitals

First contract: 1969
Debut: February 8, 1970
(Minnesota at Pittsburgh)
Final NHL game: March 30, 1983
(Detroit vs. Toronto)
Retired: June 1983
Stanley Cup: Never won
Numbers worn: 1, 30, 35 (Minnesota);
1 (Boston); 30, 1 (Detroit)

Career NHL Statistics

Teams: Minnesota, Boston, Detroit
Years: 1970-1983. Playoffs: 1973-1979

Regular Season
14 years 416 192-143-60 3.27 18 n/a
Stanley Cup Playoffs
6 years 32 17-15 3.03 3 n/a
Complete statistics available at NHL.com 

Career Highlights

Won WTCN-TV Trophy as Minnesota Rookie of Year in 1972-73. ... Represented Boston in 1974 NHL All-Star Game at Chicago. ... Tied Tony Esposito for second place in 1973-74 NHL wins list with a career-high 34 victories for Boston. ... Won inaugural Boston Radio Network Third Star Award (third-highest number of postgame three-stars selections) in 1973-74. ... Was No. 1 goalie for Boston team that lost to Philadelphia in 1974 Stanley Cup Finals and started all six games of the series that saw Philadelphia win its first Stanley Cup. ... Set Boston record (still stands) for assists by a goaltender in one playoff year with three assists in 1974 postseason. ... Had an .843 winning percentage (33-8-10) for Boston in 1975-76 -- the highest single-season  winning percentage ever recorded by an NHL goalie who played at least 50 games. ... Led NHL playoffs with two shutouts for Boston in 1976. ... Played on Boston team that lost to Montreal in 1977 Stanley Cup Finals. ... Played on Boston team that lost to Montreal in 1978 Stanley Cup Finals. ... Named No. 1 star in three of seven 1979 playoff semifinal games against Montreal, including Boston's Game 7 loss in which he allowed a late tying goal to Guy Lafleur and OT winner to Yvon Lambert. ... Left Boston with team record (still stands) for career playoff assists by a goaltender (4).

Gilbert's Record Streak

During the 1975-76 season, Gilbert set the NHL record of 17 consecutive wins. Four other NHL goalies have won 14 in a row, but Gilbert's 17 stands alone at the top. The record, however, is misleading, because he did not win 17 straight starts -- but rather had 17 consecutive decisions that were victories. He also shared work with Dave Reece and Gerry Cheevers, although he was clearly the team's No. 1 goalie. After going unbeaten (9-0-5) in 14 straight starts from Nov. 9, 1975 through Dec. 7, 1975, Gilbert began the record streak on Dec. 26, when he won a at Buffalo. He followed that up with wins at Philadelphia and Minnesota. But on Jan. 2, 1976, things got interesting. Riding his three-game streak, Gilbert got hurt late in the second period of a game at Vancouver. The score was 4-4 at the time Gilbert left the game. Reece finished the game, which ended in a 4-4 tie. Reece was given credit for the tie, keeping Gilbert's winning streak intact, even though he had started a game he had not won. Gilbert remained out of the lineup for  two games and returned to face California at home on Jan. 10, 1976. He won that game to run his decision streak to four. He sat out the next night at Washington and then beat Pittsburgh and Los Angeles at home, increasing the streak to six games. On Jan. 17 at St. Louis, Gilbert started against the Blues and gave up three goals on five shots in the game's first 11:46. Head coach Don Cherry pulled Gilbert with the Bruins trailing 3-1 and put in Reece. In the second period, the Bruins tied the game 3-3, but Reece gave up a go-ahead goal and then another to make it 5-3 for St. Louis heading into the third period. The Bruins cut it to 5-4 before Reece gave up the eventual winner at 16:53 of the third period. Reece took the loss, enabling Gilbert to keeps his streak intact, even though he was driven out of the game. After that came the NHL All-Star break, and when the Bruins returned, Gilbert beat Buffalo at home for his seventh "consecutive" win. He started each of Boston's next five games, beating Detroit, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Atlanta (twice). With the streak now at 12, he  did not start any of the next three games. He got back into the net for a Feb. 11 win at Minnesota and a Feb. 15 win at Chicago that tied Tiny Thompson's NHL record for consecutive wins (or in this case, consecutive winning decisions). After missing another game, he beat the Islanders on Feb. 21 to pass Thompson. He sat out the next game before running his streak to 16 with a home win over St. Louis on Feb. 26. He did not play the following night at Washington, but managed to win No. 17 on Feb. 29 at home vs. Vancouver -- the team against which his streak first became somewhat tainted. Gilbert saw his streak stopped when he lost at California on March 5

Transaction History

May 22, 1973 -- Traded by Minnesota to Boston in exchange for Fred Stanfield. July 15, 1980 -- Traded by Boston to Detroit in exchange for Rogie Vachon.

Significant Injuries

Missed part of 1972-73 season with broken finger. ... Missed start of 1974-75 season with knee injury suffered during Boston's 1974 training camp. ... Missed part of 1974-75 season with nerve damage in left index finger. ... Missed 16 games during 1974-75 season with pulled muscle in back. ... Missed part of 1974-75 season with injured right finger, suffered stopping shot by Philadelphia's Bill Clement. ... Missed part of 1975-76 season with bruised calf, an injury suffered during Boston's Jan. 2, 1976, game at Vancouver. He did not return until Boston's Jan. 10 game at California. ... Missed nearly half of 1977-78 season with sprained right ankle, an injury suffered during a practice at Toronto in February 1978. ... Missed part of 1979-80 season with right elbow injury. ... Missed part of 1979-80 season with back spasms, an injury requiring hospitalization for a disc problem. ... Missed part of 1979-80 season with bruised hip, an injury suffered on Jan. 20, 1980, and with viral pneumonia, contracted in March 1981. ... Missed part of 1981-82 season with broken right hand, an injury suffered during a December 1981 Detroit practice. ... Missed part of 1982-83 season with a serious skin rash, developed in October 1982.

Life Outside the NHL

Full Name: Gilles Joseph Gilbert
Nickname: "Gilly"

Other Post-Draft Teams: Iowa (CHL); Cleveland (AHL)

Career Beyond Hockey: Became a hockey instructor with Canadian Hockey Enterprises following his years as an NHL coach and scout. In this role, he tours North America to help run hockey clinics and camps for the company.

Non-Playing Career

Named N.Y. Islanders goaltending consultant prior to 1996-97 season, changed role to organizational coach in July 1998, and remained in that position through 2000-01 season. During this time, he served as the first NHL goaltending coach for both Roberto
 Luongo and Rick DiPietro

Named N.Y. Islanders pro scout prior to 1996-97 season and remained in that position through 2000-01 season.


Selected by Quebec Nordiques in 1972 WHA Draft, the first-ever WHA Draft, in February 1972. At age 18, he led all goalies in QJHL with six playoff wins for Trois-Rivieres in 1967 Was mentored by Hall of Famer Gump Worsley during his early NHL years in Minnesota. Recorded first NHL victory with family in attendance at Montreal Forum on.Oct. 21, 1970.
Played semi-pro baseball (shortstop) in off-seasons during years he was with Minnesota. Worked as instructor at hockey schools in Canada during off-seasons of his playing days. Shut out St. Louis in all three of his starts vs. the Blues for Boston in 1973-74 season. Fought with Flames goalie Dan Bouchard during Boston's Dec. 3, 1976, game at Atlanta.
Signed two-year contract to remain with Boston as a free agent in August 1979. Named No. 1 star of six Detroit Red Wings home games (team leader) during 1980-81 season. Signed two-year contract to remain with Detroit on July 17, 1981. Was the part-owner of a Quebec City nightclub during his playing days.
Total Selected: 84
Forwards: 58
Defense: 18
Goaltenders: 8
Major Junior: 68
College Players: 8
Canadian: 78
Euro-Canadian: 1
American: 4
European: 1
Reached NHL: 49
Won Stanley Cup: 10
Hall of Fame: 1
All-Star Game: 7
Year-end All-Star: 1
Olympians: 2
Picks Traded: 11


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