Alumni Profile: Mike Crombeen
In 1973 the Kingston Canadians dropped the puck for the first time as a member club of the OHA. Fans may not have been aware of the fact at the time, but one of the most successful players in franchise history stepped on the ice on opening night.
Mike Crombeen was an original member of the Kingston Canadians. During his, and the franchises first year in the OHA, Crombeen scored 19 goals and added 29 assists, but it was his second year in the league that really impressed. During the 1974-75 season he would set franchise records for the young team in goals (56), assists (58) and points (114). Although those records wouldn’t last for many seasons, they were impressive stats from a 17-year-old. In his final two seasons his numbers dipped slightly but were still very impressive. He had 82 and 78 points to finish out his junior hockey career. Crombeen’s four-year total of 160 goals is the most by any player in the history of the Kingston franchise. His 322 points is the fifth highest total in franchise history.
Mike Crombeen was drafted 5th overall by the Cleveland Barons in the 1977 NHL Amateur Draft. The same year he was also selected 4th overall by the Edmonton Oilers in the WHA Amateur Draft, a competing league with the NHL, however he would never play a game for the Oilers or in the WHA.
During his rookie season in the NHL, Crombeen appeared in 48 games for the Cleveland Barons recording 3 goals and 4 assists. It was the only season he would spend in Cleveland. Following the 1977-78 season the Cleveland Barons merged with the Minnesota North Stars due to financial issues. Mike Crombeen was left unprotected and entered into the dispersal draft where he was picked up by the St. Louis Blues.
Mike spent the majority of his career with the Blues playing 5 seasons there. His most productive season was the 1981-82 season when he scored 19 goals and 8 assists. Despite that being his best season as far as totals are concerned, it was during the 1980-81 season that he had his most significant moment. In the opening round of the 1981 playoffs the Blues were facing the Pittsburgh Penguins. The best of five series was tied 2-2 and game five went into double overtime. At 5:16 of the second overtime period, Crombeen took a pass from Mike Zuke and beat goaltender Greg Millen to send the Blues into the second round of the playoffs. One can only assume it was the biggest goal Mike Crombeen would score in his career.
Following the 1982-83 season, St. Louis would place Mike Crombeen on waivers. He was claimed by the Hartford Whalers and would spend two seasons with them. His final year of pro hockey was spent in the AHL with Binghamton during the 1984-85 season.
Mike Crombeen played 475 games in the NHL putting up 55 goals and 68 assists. He also appeared in 27 playoff games where he had 6 goals and 2 assists.
In the summer of 1985, Mike Crombeen welcomed his son, B.J. Crombeen, to the world. B.J. would grow up to become a professional hockey player himself taking a nearly identical route to the pros as his father spending four years in the OHL with the Barrie Colts.