Don Grosso

Skinny Don Grosso was nicknamed "The Count" because of his uncanny resemblance to Dracula.

The versatile left-winger's is best remembered skating alongside Sid Abel and Eddie Wares on Detroit's "Liniment Line." "It was called that because one of us was always hurt," Grosso explained. "That's because we got so much ice time on our regular shift, killing penalties and on the power play."

Grosso's best regular-season performance came in 1941-42, when he registered 23-30-53 totals to finish third in NHL scoring and establish a new Detroit single-season record for points.

Known as a money player who could always be "counted" on in big games, Grosso saved some of his best hockey for the playoffs. During the 1942 post-season, Grosso tallied a Stanley Cup-record 14 points, eight of them coming in Detroit's seven-game loss to Toronto in the finals.

His hat-trick in Game 3 of the 1943 finals at Boston paved the way for Detroit's 4-0 series win. It was the only time Grosso would win the Stanley Cup.

The Ottawa Citizen suggested a wealthy Detroit fan may have had something to do with Grosso's improved production come spring:

Grosso, who got $75 for his goals the first game from Harry Jacobson, No. 1 Detroit fan, picked up another $15 from the same source in the second game-but not for his scoring. "I offered $5 for a body check-that is a good clean check which put the man on the ice-and Grosso bowled over three of them," Jacobson explained. "Syd Abel got $5 and here's the payoff, Jimmy Orlando, a defenceman who was considered a cinch to pick up the most money, didn't get any.

In 1944-45 Grosso was traded to Chicago in mid-season as part of a package which allowed Detroit to grab perennial all-star defenseman Earl Seibert. He would also briefly play with the Boston Bruins.


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