Frederick (Fred) Tennyson Hunt was born on January 17, 1917 in Brantford, Ontario. He was a member of Brantford Minor Hockey and played for the Brantford Lions of the Ontario Hockey League from 1933-1935.
In 1937 Fred Hunt was drafted by the Boston Bruins and went to the training camp in Hershey, Pennsylvania. From 1938-40 he played for Hershey, Baltimore and Springfield of the American Hockey League (AHL).
In December 1940 he was called up for 15 games to the New York Americans of the National Hockey League (NHL) where he scored 2 goals and 5 assists. He played for the Buffalo Bisons of the AHL from 1941-49.
In the 1944-45 season, Fred joined the New York Rangers where, in 44 games, he scored 13 goals and 9 assists. From 1952-1970 he served as General Manager, Governor of AHL’s Buffalo Bisons
In 1965 Hunt was out golfing with Dr. George Collins. The two of them talked about an idea: the NHL was discussing expanding and Hunt thought that Buffalo should be part of this NHL expansion. Dr. Collins went on Hunt’s advice to look for investors for this idea. The following week, Dr. Collins, Seymour Know III and Fred Hunt were golfing and the rest is history.
On December 1, 1969, the NHL awarded Buffalo a franchise. The headline in one of Buffalo’s two newspapers could have read: “Goal: Know, Assist: Hunt.”
Soon George “Punch” Imlach was named General Manager and Fred Hunt was appointed Assistant General Manager of the new Buffalo NHL team. At the same time, Hunt served as General Manager of the Sabres’ minor league affiliate Cincinnati Swords that won the AHL Calder Cup in 1973.
During the AHL 1977-78 season, the league Board of Governors created the “Fred T. Hunt Memorial Award.” This award is voted upon by coaches, players and members of the media around the AHL and honours the player best exemplifying the qualities demonstrated by Fred T. Hunt: sportsmanship, determination and dedication to hockey.
Hunt spent the majority of his career as a player, General Manager and Governor for the AHL’s Buffalo Bisons, and earned a total of six Calder Cup championships during his career.
Fred Hunt passed away on October 4, 1977 in Buffalo, New York.
The Buffalo Sabres, of the National Hockey League, won the Prince of Wales trophy for the 1974-75 season as the Eastern Conference Champions who then advance to the Stanley Cup Finals.
Fred Hunt played an intregral part in the city of Buffalo being awarded an expansion team in the National Hockey League in 1969. He was appointed as the Assistant General Manager of the new Buffalo NHL team.
At the same time that Fred Hunt was the Assistant General Manager of the new Buffalo NHL team, he also served as General Manager of the Sabres’ minor league affiliate Cincinnati Swords that won the American Hockey League Calder Cup in 1973.
You can view these artefacts on display at the Brantford and Area Sports Hall of Recognition.