Herbert James Cain (December 24, 1912 in Newmarket, Ontario – February 23, 1982 in Newmarket, Ontario) was a Canadian professional ice hockey left winger who played 13 seasons in the National Hockey League for the Montreal Maroons, Montreal Canadiens, and Boston Bruins.
Herbert Cain was born in Newmarket, Ontario to John (Jack) and Elizabeth "Eliza" Cain (née Currier). He played junior hockey for the Newmarket Redmen and the Hamilton Tigers of the OHA.
Cain's NHL career started when he joined the Montreal Maroons of the NHL in the 1933–34 season. He split that season between the Maroons and the Hamilton Tigers of the OHA. In 1934–35 Cain briefly played for the Windsor Bulldogs of the IHL. With the exception of a one-game stint with the Hershey Bears in 1940–41, he would remain in the NHL for the next 11 seasons.
As a member of the Montreal Maroons, Cain played on a line with Gus Marker and Bob Gracie. They were dubbed the "Green Line" and their combined offensive prowess led Montreal to their second Stanley Cup Championship in 1934–35. Cain was dealt to the Montreal Canadiens in the fall of 1938. After one season in Montreal, he was traded to the Boston Bruins for Charlie Sands and Ray Getliffe.
Cain had his most productive years in Boston. Playing on a line with future Hall of Fame inductee Bill Cowley, he helped the Bruins win the Stanley Cup in 1940–41. Cain went on to win the NHL scoring title in 1943–44 with 82 points. His total set a record for points in a season which stood until Gordie Howe scored 86 in 1950–51. Despite criticism that the war-depleted league had led to a freak season - his mark was more than double his previous season high - Cain was selected as a Second Team All-Star at left wing and was runner up to Clint Smith of the Chicago Black Hawks for the Lady Byng Trophy.
The following season, he scored 32 goals for Boston, but fell well short of his previous point mark, and in the season thereafter (in which players serving in the military returned to the NHL) his totals plummeted further. In 1946–47 Cain was sent to the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League and he went on to help the Bears win the first Calder Cup, the first in franchise history. Cain ended his professional career in 1949–50 as a member of the Hershey Bears.
Cain remains the only eligible former NHL scoring champion not inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. He was the last active player in the NHL to have ever played for the Montreal Maroons.
In total, Cain played 571 NHL regular season games.
Cain's older brother Jack Cain played professional hockey in the AHL for the New Haven Eagles and the Hershey Bears. His cousin Jim "Dutch" Cain also played in the NHL.1943–44 NHL Scoring Leader
1943–44 NHL Second Team All-Star - Left Wing
1943–44 - Set NHL record for most points in a season with 82