Saturday, March 5, 2011

Greg Carroll

Playing on a line with Morris Lukowich and Don Murdoch, Greg Carroll had a spectacular junior career with the Medicine Hat Tigers where he scored a fine 171 points (60 goals and 111 assists) in just 71 games during his sophmore season in 1975-76. That great junior season convinced the Washington Capitals to select him in the 1st round, 15th overall in 1976, ahead of players like Brian Sutter, Reed Larson and Randy Carlyle.

The Cincinnati Stingers of the rival WHA also selected him in their amateur draft, and that's where he signed. His pro rookie season for the Stingers was pretty good as he collected a fine 54 points (15 goals and 39 assists) in 77 games. Then his WHA career turned into a game of ping pong, bouncing between the Stingers and the New England Whalers until his release in September, 1978.

The Washington Capitals, one of the 1970s most dreadful hockey teams, signed Carroll, desperate for help. He would compete half a season in the American capital before being traded to Detroit. The next year he returned to the Whalers, now known as Hartford and as part of the NHL. He scored 13 goals and 32 points, but remained a disappointing player given his promise.

It turned out Greg Carroll had some serious off ice concerns that must have hampered his dedication to the game.

In the summer of 1980 Greg was arrested together with 20 other persons in a series of raids by drug squad detectives who had been attempting to break up cocaine rings in Edmonton. The police netted more than $500,000 worth of cocaine. Greg was released on bail but had to do time in jail on a charge of possessing narcotics for the purpose of trafficking.

Because of this stupid act Greg's career was all over at only 23. He may have had plenty of solid NHL seasons ahead of him that he just wasted.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

These days, he's a journeyman pipefitter working in the northern Alberta oilpatch.

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