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Grand moments

October 3rd, 1953
On October 3, 1953, after Habs General Manager, Frank Selke, bought up the entire Quebec Senior Hockey League to lock up his coveted professional rights, Jean Béliveau inked his first contract with the Canadiens. The historic signing was chronicled by a herd of journalists who had swarmed the Forum for the event.

Béliveau, who had picked up seven points in five games during two brief visits with the big club, agreed to an unprecedented, five-year, six-figure contract, the richest ever offered to an NHL player.

The ink on his contract barely dry, Béliveau suited up for the Stanley Cup Champion Canadiens that evening, playing in the NHL All-Star Game against the top players from the rest of the league. He registered an assist on Maurice Richard’s goal, the only Habs marker of the evening as the Canadiens dropped a 3-1 decision to the All-Star squad.