The Vancouver Canucks began their time in the NHL on an unfortunate wheel spin. After losing the draft lottery first pick, the Canucks ended up choosing Dale Tallon as the 2nd overall pick and their first ever amateur draft pick in 1970. Tallon’s time in Vancouver is unfortunately remembered sourly because he played in the shadow of Gilbert Perreault, who was picked ahead of Tallon.
Tallon’s first season was actually very respectable. Tallon scored 14 goals from the back end added 42 assists, leading the Canucks in that category. His 56 points were enough to make an impression and finished 5th in Calder voting. In Tallon’s second season, he began to be utilized as a forward, but it didn’t work terribly well. He did manage 17 goals, but his assist count dropped significantly down to 27. Tallon moved back to defense in the 1972-73 season and still somewhat produced some points, but had a miserable -37 on the season. After the season ended, Tallon was traded to the Black Hawks for Jerry Korab and Gary Smith, the latter becoming a significant player for the Canucks.
When Tallon was traded after his first three seasons, he was second to Andre Boudrias in all-time games, third in points (137 points) and second in assists (93). Tallon’s 56 points in 1970-71 was a Canuck record for defensemen until Dennis Kearns surpassed him in 1976-77. Tallon still holds the Canuck record for the most points by a rookie defenseman.