July the 25th will be a special day for former Flin Flonner Al Hamilton , who will be inducted into the Alberta Hockey Hall Of Fame in Canmore.
Hamilton already a member of the Manitoba Hockey Hall Of Fame remembers his time in Flin Flon fondly.
Before heading to Edmonton to play junior with the Oil Kings, Hamilton played his entire minor hockey in Flin Flon, winning numerous Provincial Juvenile and Midget Championships under the guidance of Bill Maluta.
Hamilton says the calibre of hockey in Flin Flon helped prepare him for a solid Professional career. In 1962-63 Hamilton did play a few games with his hometown Bombers as a 15 year old. He was traded to the Oil Kings the next season, and reached the Memorial Cup Final 3 years in a row , winning it all in 1966.
He made his NHL debut the same year with the New York Rangers, and eventually cracked their lineup in 1969, playing 59 games. In between, he was an all-star in the Central Hockey League with Omaha, and spent two seasons with Buffalo in the American Hockey League. In the 1970 NHL expansion draft, Hamilton was the third selection of the Buffalo Sabres.
In 1972, Hamilton returned to his western roots, as a member of the Alberta Oilers (they would become Edmonton the next year), one of the inaugural franchises in the newly-formed WHA. He was team captain for four seasons, and named an all-star in 1974 and 1978. In 1974, Hamilton was selected to the WHA’s Team Canada Summit Series squad, playing in three games and recording an assist against Russia.
Hamilton’s playing career ended in 1980, as he returned to the NHL, playing 31 games with the Edmonton Oilers. Upon his retirement, his number ‘3’ jersey was the first to be retired by the franchise, and Hamilton remains the only Oiler not part of the 1980s Stanley Cup teams to have his jersey retired.
Statistically, in a combined 746 regular season and playoff games in the WHA and NHL, Hamilton accumulated 68 goals and 347 assists.