Serge Aubrey "The Senator" Savard, OC, CQ (born January 22, 1946) is a Canadian retired professional ice hockey defenceman, most famously with the Montreal Canadiens of the National Hockey League (NHL). He is the Senior Vice President, Hockey Operations with the Montreal Canadiens. He is also a local businessman in Montreal, and is nicknamed the Senator. On January 27, 2017, in a ceremony during the All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles, Savard was part of the second group of players to be named one of the '100 Greatest NHL Players' in history.
Savard played minor league hockey with the Montreal Junior Canadiens, then with the Omaha Knights. After playing with the Montreal Jr. Canadiens, he started playing with the Montreal Canadiens in 1966. In 1968–69, his second full NHL season, he led the Canadiens to a second consecutive Stanley Cup win, becoming the first defencemen to win the Conn Smythe Trophy as the playoffs' most valuable player. In seventeen seasons with the Canadiens, Savard played on eight Stanley Cup championship teams: 1968, 1969, 1971, 1973, 1976, 1977, 1978, and 1979. In 1979, he won the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy for perseverance and dedication to the game. Savard played the last two seasons of his career with the Winnipeg Jets before retiring in 1983. Savard was the second last player of the Original Six era, as Wayne Cashman and his Boston Bruins advanced to the next round of the playoffs, while Winnipeg did not.
The "Savardian Spin-o-rama", which is a quick pivoting turn with the puck done in order to evade opponents, was coined by sportscaster Danny Gallivan and named after Serge Savard, and not Denis Savard (who was adept at the same manoeuvre) as is often thought.
Savard played for Canada in the 1972 Summit Series against the Soviet Union. Team Canada was 4-0-1 when Savard was in the starting lineup. He did not play in the opening loss at the Forum in Montreal but was in the starting lineup for games 2 and 3 in Toronto and Winnipeg (a win and tie, respectively). He suffered a hairline fracture in his leg which forced him to sit out Canada's losses in games 4 and 5. He returned to the lineup for games 6, 7, and 8, all wins for Canada.
After Savard retired as a player, he was named the general manager of the Canadiens, also serving as Manager of minor league team Sherbrooke Canadiens. Savard won the Calder Cup with Sherbrooke in 1985. In 1986 and 1993 he was the general manager of the Stanley Cup Champion Montreal Canadiens.
In 1994 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada. In 2004, he was made a Knight of the National Order of Quebec. He is currently the chairman of the annual Canada Day festivities in Montreal. He lived a few years in Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville, Quebec. His son Marc ran for the Liberal Party in the riding of Saint-Bruno-Saint-Hubert in the 2005 federal election but lost.
In 1998, he was ranked number 81 on The Hockey News' list of the 100 Greatest Hockey Players.
He is a partner in a firm of real-estate developers, "Thibault, Messier, Savard & Associates", based in Montreal.
In September 2004, Savard was arrested in Montreal under suspicion of drunk driving. He pleaded not guilty in November 2004, but would later plead guilty in May 2006.
On November 18, 2006, the Montreal Canadiens retired his jersey number (18) in a special ceremony at Bell Centre.
In April 2012 after the dismissal of Pierre Gauthier, Montreal Canadiens Owner Geoff Molson called upon Savard to assist and advise him in the team's search for a new General Manager.
Also, he was part owner in a resort called El Senador located in Cayo Coco, Cuba until it was sold in 2005. The name was a reference to his nickname.
- Won Conn Smythe Trophy — 1969
- Named an NHL Second-Team All-Star — 1979
- Played in 4 NHL All-Star Games (1970, 1973, 1977, 1978)
- Played in the 1979 Challenge Cup
- Won Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy — 1979
- Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame — 1986
- In 1998, he was ranked number 81 on The Hockey News' list of the 100 Greatest Hockey Players.
Regular season and playoffs
|1963–64||Montreal Junior Canadiens||OHA-Jr.||56||3||31||34||72||17||1||7||8||30|
|1965–65||Montreal Junior Canadiens||OHA-Jr.||56||14||33||47||81||7||2||3||5||8|
|1965–66||Montreal Junior Canadiens||OHA-Jr.||20||8||10||18||33||10||1||4||5||20|