Wayne rutledge

Team: Houston Aeros

Style: Road Jersey

Manufacturer: Rawlings

Material: Durene

Tagging: Manufacturer tag in neck

Year: 1974-75

Set: N/A

Size: 52

Patches: none

Acquired From: gamewornauctions.net May, 2007 auction

Photomatched: No

Description:  The Aeros were an original WHA franchise, which were actually relocated to Houston before ever playing a game. They were originally granted ownership to represent Dayton, Ohio but failed to secure a stadium for their team. The Houston Aeros began play at the Sam Houston Coliseum and were a respectable club in the standings that lacked any real star power in the teams 1st season. That would soon change as Gordie, Mark and Marty Howe would join the squad to begin season 2.

The new additions would vault the Aeros to league supremecy and they would capture back to back Avco World titles in 1974 and 1975. In 1975-76 the Aeros changed venues to the new Summit arena and again were a dominant regular season club. Their bid for a 3-peat was foiled at the hands of the Bobby Hull led Winnipeg Jets in the final round of the Avco World Finals. Again dominant during the 1976-77 regular season, the Aeros would suffer the same fate as the season prior, falling again to the Winnipeg franchise in the semi-final round. The 3 Howe’s left Houston for New England for the 1977-78 season and the franchise was never the same, failing in its bid to become members of the WHA NHL expansion and closing shop prior to the 1978-79 season.

This road blue dureen gamer by Rawlings was worn by goaltender Wayne Rutledge during the 1974-75 WHA season. Rutledge was a member of the expansion LA Kings where he tended goal for 3 seasons. Following a couple of seasons in the minors, Wayne joined the Houston Aeros to start their inaugural campaign and would play for the squad through their final season of 1977-78. The wear on this large dureen is light consisting of typical goalie usage which includes stick and puck marks, a few un-repaired holes and fine pilling both inside and out. This all original example still features vibrant blue colors.