Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Bruins Sweaters of the Past #1: Nevin Markwart

5-10, 180
Boron: December 9, 1964 in Toronto, Ontario
1983-84-1987-88; 1989-90-1991-92
GP: 299 G: 39 A: 67 PTS: 106 PIM: 769
As some of you may know, I collect gameworn jerseys primarily of Boston Bruins players or Bruins prospects (though I do have a killer collection dedicated to Mike Liut, never a Bruin but my favorite hockey player of all time).

I thought this might be a good place to periodically (every week) highlight a Bruins player of the past and post photos of one of his jerseys.

First up is winger Nevin Markwart.

This undersized (listed at 5-11, 175), but tough-as-nails forward was Boston's top pick in the 1983 draft, selected 20th overall out of the Regina Pats of the WHL. He was a wolverine on skates: pound-for-pound one of the toughest players in the NHL when he was healthy enough to play and always willing to drop the gloves, no matter how much he gave away to opponents in terms of size and reach.

Born in Toronto, Markwart's parents named him for Bob Nevin, a Maple Leafs player in the early 60's (when Markwart was born in 1964) before going to the Rangers, where he had the best years of his career from 1964-71.

Markwart made the Bruins at age 18, and had a strong rookie season, posting 14 goals and 30 points in 70 games with Boston, adding 121 penalty minutes. He went on to split time between the big club and minors (Hershey, Moncton, Maine) for the remainder of his career, but led the B's in penalty minutes during the 1986-87 with 225 in just 64 games.

He finished his NHL time with the Calgary Flames after the Bruins moved him out west during the 91-92 season. In the end, his penchant for playing a punishing style took its toll on his small frame, forcing his retirement before he reached the age of 30. Markwart finished his NHL career with 41 goals and 109 points with 794 penalty minutes in 309 games (all but 10 of them spent wearing the spoked B on his chest.)

This game-worn jersey of Markwart's was made for the 1989-90 season, as evidenced from the sublimated gold 'Custom Crafted' stamp on the rear hem. This stamp is a feature of the 89-90 set of Bruins jerseys, before the NHL issued a cease and desist order to the North Attleboro, Mass. company to put its logo on the outside of the jerseys where they would be visible. However, the moderate to heavy wear on this jersey leads me to believe that Markwart may have worn it in both the 89-90 and 90-91 seasons, as he only played a handful of games in 89-90 (eight total) and 23 more the following year. There are stick marks, pilling and some obvious fight abuse on the left sleeve, with four unrepaired holes likely caused when he fought Luke Richardson in a game in Toronto that year, his only recorded fight of the season.

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