Frank Mathers

Frank Sydney Mathers (March 29, 1924 – February 9, 2005) was a professional ice hockey player during the 1940s and 1950s with the NHL Toronto Maple Leafs, and the AHL Pittsburgh Hornets and Hershey Bears, and is best known for his 35-year association with the Bears as a player, coach, GM and President. He was elected as a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame in the builder's category in 1992.

Frank Mathers
Hockey Hall of Fame, 1992
Born (1924-03-29)March 29, 1924
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Died February 9, 2005(2005-02-09) (aged 80)
Hershey, Pennsylvania, USA
Height 6 ft 01 in (185 cm)
Weight 182 lb (83 kg; 13 st 0 lb)
Position Defence
Shot Left
Played for NHL
Toronto Maple Leafs
Pittsburgh Hornets
Hershey Bears
Playing career 19481962


One of the AHL's most accomplished players, Mathers stood as the all-time assist and point-scoring leader among AHL defencemen upon his retirement as a player in 1962. He was selected to the AHL All Star Team five consecutive years. As a player or executive, he won eight Calder Cups—two as a player for Pittsburgh (1952 and 1955), two as a player/coach for Hershey (1958 and 1959), one as a coach for Hershey (1969), and three as a general manager for Hershey (1974, 1980 and 1988). In 1987, he was awarded the Lester Patrick Trophy for his lifelong commitment to hockey in the United States. Mathers retired from the Bears in 1991 after 35 years with the Hershey Bears (17 as a coach, with the first 6 as a player/coach, and 18 as general manager/team president). The Bears have retired number 3 in his honor.

He is one of few Honored Members of the Hockey Hall of Fame whose North American career was almost entirely outside of the NHL (having played just 23 NHL games), having been enshrined in 1992 in the builders' category. Mathers was also inducted as a charter member of the AHL Hall of Fame in 2006 in Winnipeg.

Mathers also played professional football in the CFL. He was a fullback for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Ottawa Rough Riders. In 1942, while serving in the RCAF, Mathers played for the Winnipeg RCAF Bombers in the first ever non-civilian Grey Cup game, losing 8–5 to the Toronto RCAF Hurricanes.

Preceded by
Vic Stasiuk
Winner of the Louis A.R. Pieri Memorial Award
Succeeded by
Fred Shero
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