George Abel was a member of the gold medal winning Canadian hockey team at the 1952 Olympic Winter Games in Oslo. It was Canada’s last Olympic gold medal in the sport until Salt Lake 2002.
At Oslo 1952, forward George Abel was a member of the Canadian team mostly made up of players from the Edmonton Mercurys team. In the round-robin tournament, Canada and the United States tied 3-3, but Canada did not lose a game and won the gold medal, as the Americans had lost to Sweden, 4-2. Abel played in eight games and scored six goals.
Prior to Oslo 1952, Abel played with the Flin Flon Bombers of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League alongside his brother Sid in the 1930s. A broken collarbone did not stop him from winning a provincial title in 1937-38. Abel declined to play in the National Hockey League (NHL) for the Detroit Red Wings and the Toronto Maple Leafs. Instead he joined the Melville Millionaires and earned the nickname “Mr. Hockey”, a tribute to both his skills on the ice and his job as player/coach. Abel was named league scorer three times and had captured four championships when he retired in 1956.
Abel, along with his other brothers Don and Lawrence, ran a hauling business in Saskatchewan known as “Abel’s Cartage”. Staying in his hometown for his entire life, Abel remained active in fastball, softball, curling, hunting and fishing. He retired from the family business in 1971 and died in 1996.
As a member of his Olympic team, Abel was inducted into the Alberta Sport Hall of Fame Museum in 1968, received an individual induction into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame in 1993 and with the 1952 Edmonton Mercurys, he was inducted into the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame in 2002.
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