Hockey Hall of Famer and former American Hockey League head coach Bernie (Boom Boom) Geoffrion died Saturday morning in an Atlanta hospital after a brief battle with stomach cancer.
He was 75.
The Montreal native, known for popularizing the slap shot, passed away on the day his number 5 jersey was to be retired by the Montreal Canadiens in a ceremony before a game Saturday night against the New York Rangers.
A 1972 inductee into the Hockey Hall of Fame, Geoffrion scored 371 goals in 14 seasons with the Canadiens. Following his retirement in 1964, he was named the head coach of Montreal’s AHL affiliate, the Quebec Aces.
Geoffrion led the Aces to division championships in each of his two seasons at the helm, going a combined 91-47-6.
He came out of retirement after the 1965-66 season in Quebec and played two more years in the NHL with the New York Rangers, then later served as head coach of the Rangers, Canadiens and Atlanta Flames.
Information from the Canadian Press was used in this story