The Montreal Canadiens are an organization that has never been known for their fighters. Historically they have prided themselves on skill, speed and finesse. Rarely mentioned in the histories are the players who have to handle the fighting for Le Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.
Those players do however exist. During Dick Irvin's tenure as coach from 1940 until Toe Blake was brought in to replace him in 1955 he made an active attempt to recruit more physical players and to encourage a more passionate style of play.
During the 1980s, and especially in the battle of Quebec years, the Canadiens team was often among the league leaders in fighting majors.
This is my attempt to rank the men who were the toughest fighters in Montreal Canadiens history. The players are ranked according to toughness, fighting ability, the length of time they took on this role in Montreal, and how often they fought. As with any list like this a great deal of subjectivity comes into the ranking.
Thanks to Trent Frayne and his book The Mad Men of Hockey for stories of some of the fighters from the earliest days in Montreal. Also thanks to DropYourGloves.com for the fighting numbers, from the earliest NHL years to today.