Paul MacDermid: Chesley Native, Veteran NHL Player, & Owen Sound Attack Owner

Paul MacDermid, born in Chesley Ontario, through hard work and determination enjoyed a 12 year NHL career, before keeping junior hockey alive in Owen Sound by working with a group citizens to purchase the Attack OHL franchise.

In 1968, a momentous occasion occurred in the Chesley minor hockey league. 

A five-year-old lad skated onto the ice for the first time to play organized hockey. Little did anyone in attendance realize that they were witnessing the beginning of a career which would take this youngster to the arenas of the National Hockey League. 

Although many youngsters dream of playing professional hockey, only a very few ever fulfil their childhood fantasies. There are many who have the talent for professional hockey, but only a few who have the desire and determination to withstand the stress and strain of a professional hockey career. In this regard, Paul MacDermid had what it takes to play in the very best hockey league in the world. 

The 1978-79 season was Paul's last season in the Chesley minor hockey league. After this season with the Chesley Midgets, he played for the Port Elgin Bears of the Mid-Western Jr. C league. Following this season, his talent and determination were recognized in the OHL draft. He was selected in the eighth round (99th overall) by the Windsor Spitfires. 

Paul MacDermidPaul MacDermid - Winnipeg Jets - Paul White Hockey Memorabilia Collection

After his first Major Jr. A season, he was named the Spitfires most improved player. In the NHL draft that same spring, he was selected by the Hartford Whalers in the third round (61st overall). 

Being selected by a National Hockey League team did not inspire complacency in MacDermid. He played another season with the Spitfires. During that season, he worked hard to further improve his hockey skills. At the end of the season, for the second year in a row, he was selected as Windsor's most improved player. 

Paul's hard work in the 1981-82 season did not go unnoticed by the Whalers' management. He was called up to play the last three games of the season there. During this brief stint, Paul scored his first NHL goal. This goal was special in many ways. Not only was it his first professional goal, but it was assisted by future Hall of Famer Dave Keon. This assist by the former Maple Leaf captain, who retired at the end of the season, was his last NHL point. 

MacDermid started the 1982-83 season with the Windsor Spitfires, but was recalled to Hartford in December. After seven games, he injured his knee and returned to Windsor. Despite missing two months of the season, Paul was named to the OHL second all-star team. 

The next season and a half were spent playing for Hartford's American Hockey League franchise in Binghamton, New York. In February 1985, he was called up to the Hartford Whalers. For the next four-and-a- half seasons, he played for the Whalers. During this time, Paul experienced another memorable moment in his career. In the first game of the first playoff round of the 1985-86 campaign, he scored an overtime goal to defeat the hometown Quebec Nordiques. 

During the 1987-88 season, Paul scored 20 goals and was the recipient of the "True Grit' and "Unsung Hero" awards. During the 1989-90 season, he was traded to the Winnipeg Jets for Randy Cunneyworth. During the 1991-92 season, the boy from Chesley found himself playing in the capital city of the United States. He had been traded to the Washington Capitals for defenseman Mike Lalor. 

A little more than a season later, Paul was on the move again. This time he found himself in the uniform of the Quebec Nordiques. He played there until he retired at the end of the 1994-95 season. 

During his career, Paul MacDermid scored 116 goals and 142 assists, while amassing 1,303 penalty minutes. He was a solid two-way hockey player, whose determination and talent paid off in a career that spanned 12 years and 690 games in the National Hockey League. 

Today, Paul is a member of an ownership group running the OHL Owen Sound Attack. Paul, and other community-minded citizens stepped to purchase the Owen Sound junior hockey franchise in 2000, when the previous owners decided to sell, and there was a very real chance that the team would be moving to Cornwall Ontario.

A version of "Paul MacDermid: Chesley Native, Veteran NHL Player, & Owen Sound Attack Owner," originally appeared in my Local History column in the February 24, 1997 edition of the Owen Sound Sun Times.

More Great Information Pages
About Owen Sound Hockey History

The 1920s Owen Sound Hockey Stars made there mark in amateur ranks and then many of them went on to careers in the NHL and other professional hockey leagues.

The 1927 Owen Sound Greys with a priest serving as coach named Jack Spratt and not one experienced defenseman were an unlikely Canadian National Hockey Championship team.

Benny Grant: Memorial Cup Champ grew up in Owen Sound and enjoyed a hockey career, which included a surprising turn of events that led to a stint in the NHL.

"Buck" Jones, like most Canadian boys, dreamed of playing in the NHL. Little did he realize that one day he would wear the sweater of an NHL club and would be the idol of youngsters like himself!

The Chin Brothers dominated in their hockey league which drew attention from the Detroit Red Wings and the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Ralph "Cooney" Weiland skated from a Memorial Cup championship in Owen Sound, to a Stanley Cup in Boston to fame as a U.S. college hockey coach.

The Crescent Club has a long history of sponsoring sports teams and leagues in Owen Sound providing consistent management and financial assistance to athletics.

"Cyclone" Taylor was hockey's first superstar. Born in Tara Ontario, he was involved in a controversy in Ottawa which still has not been resolved.

Doug Brindley: From Maple Draft Choice to a role in Slap Shot: a Memorial Cup champ; coached by Don Cherry; and he played in the WHA; what more could a Walkerton Ontario native ask for in a hockey career?

The Durham Yellowjackets hockey team was a force to be reckoned with in Ontario Intermediate hockey in the 1930s.

Goalie "Red" Henry: An All-Star Netminder: Another great Owen Sound goalie who played for the love of the game.

"Hap" Day was a Hall of Fame hockey player, coach and general manager as well as a life-long Toronto Maple Leaf.

Norm Locking Chicago Black Hawks & Former Owen Sound Grey was known for his hard and deadly shot in Al Capone's Chicago.

Harry Lumley spent his Hall of Fame hockey career tending the nets for four NHL clubs and he spent one period of a hockey game goaltending for a fifth NHL team.

Henry Kelso: Owen Sound Sports Legend not only contributed to the sporting life of his students, he also had a significant influence on the rest of their lives.

Junior Hockey Commentary: Should there be controversy about the use of non-local hockey players? This article was written in 1998 in response to a letter to the editor in the Owen Sound Sun Times.

Meaford Knights Hockey: The 1953-54 Championship Knights' line-up had of several pairs of brothers. Many felt that the brothers made a winning difference.

Newspaper Sports: Owen Sound Hockey History was detailed in the pages of the Owen Sound Sun Times in detail in the days before the radio and television eras.

Owen Sound Hockey's early history some references suggest started in the 1880s. However there are records of organized hockey teams beginning in the early 1900s.

Owen Sound was a Hockey Hotbed in 1950-51: Their fans were hockey crazy during this OHA Senior A Championship season as their star-studded team marched to an Allan Cup victory.

The 1959-60 Owen Sound Greys: A Tough Act to Follow: Tragedy struck this hockey team of young men, yet they persevered.

The 1960s Owen Sound Greys Stars who went on to NHL action including Brian Perry, Doug Brindley, Jim Schoenfeld, and Jack Lynch brought Owen Sound a reputation as a hockey hotbed!

Owen Sound Attack: The arrival of this new OHL team is the latest chapter in the Owen Sound region's rich hockey history.

Owen Sound Goalies: Why does Owen Sound produce so many fine goaltenders? There must be something in the water! 

Some Great Owen Sound Greys. The history of this hockey team is a story of players who were not only local boys, but came from many locations to hone their skills.

Owen Sound Hockey Heritage stretches from rural farmhouses on Saturday night to backyard rinks to cheering for local hockey successes and hockey heroes.

Owen Sound Junior Hockey History began almost one hundred and twenty years ago and is rich with championship teams, great players, and dedicated fans. 

Owen Sound's New Arena in 1938 opened a new era in Grey and Bruce counties with the first artificial ice making machine in western Ontario north of Kitchener.

Owen Sound Platers: Ray McKelvie the quiet and knowledgeable leader behind the success of the 1999 hockey team.

Pat McReavy enjoyed a long hockey career which brought him three championships, the Stanley Cup, the Allan Cup and a World Hockey Title.

Paul MacDermid, born in Chesley Ontario, through hard work and determination enjoyed a 12 year NHL career, before keeping junior hockey alive in Owen Sound by working with a group citizens to purchase the Attack OHL franchise.

"Red" Armstrong, a fiery spirited hockey player, known more for his fierce checking than his scoring prowess surprised even himself on his first NHL shift.

Red Leckie was more than a good hockey player. He played for the team, not for himself. Outside hockey, he responded when he saw a need in his community.

Southampton hockey history in the early years featured a distinct line of defense in the local arena, and stories of interesting "road" trips.

Tommy Burlington: the Greatest North American Never to Play in the NHL captured scoring titles in every league that he played, bringing comparisons to NHL greats.

Owen Sound Hockey History is rich with stories of championship teams, star hockey players, and community support.