Though he was just 5'10" and 175lbs, rough and tumble defenceman Joe Hall was one of the most feared players of his time. "Bad" Joe Hall was known for his hard hitting, violent outbursts and sometimes less than clean play.
Hall was born in Staffordshire, England in 1882, but came to Canada as a two year old. He learned to play hockey in Manitoba, playing for teams in Winnipeg and especially Brandon, before cutting his teeth with Portage Lake in the infamously rough International Hockey League in 1905-06. Bad Joe was the baddest of them all, leading the league with 98 penalty minutes. He was also good, very good. He was an all star who scored 33 goals in 20 games.
Portage Lake's challenge request for the Stanley Cup was denied because the team was openly professional. This was a big disappointment for Hall, who opted to return to the "amateur" ranks where he would make similar money, if only under the table.
He did exactly that, vagabonding around various Canadian Amateur Hockey Associations, most notably with the AAA's and Shamrocks, both in Montreal, and the Kenora Thistles, winning the Stanley Cup in 1907.
News of his rocking of opponents soon spread to the National Hockey Association, forerunner to the NHL. Hall joined the Quebec Bulldogs, bringing his mayhem-causing play with him, not to mention Stanley Cup championships in 1912 and 1913. He soon developed feuds with many players, none more famous (or is that infamous?) than that of the feud with Montreal Canadiens superstar Newsy Lalonde.
Oddly enough, Hall was acquired by the Canadiens in 1917, joining his arch rival Lalonde. Any worries of their personal rivalry boiling over were soon dismissed as the two of them became roommates and the best of friends.
However their new found friendship was short as the following season would be Hall's last. During the 1919 Stanley Cup final when he and several of his teammates fell ill to the Spanish Influenza, dieing days later at the age of 36. The Stanley Cup series was abandoned, the only such time that happened in NHL history.
Bad Joe Hall, one of the first English-only speaking players in Montreal Canadiens history, joined Newsy Lalonde in the Hall of Fame in 1961.