PHILADELPHIA -- The Philadelphia Flyers traded backup goalies with the Toronto Maple Leafs Monday, sending Rick St. Croix to the Leafs for Michel Larocque.
St. Croix, 28, began the year as the No. 1 goalie but lost his starting berth to rookie Pelle Lindbergh and last week had requested a trade from Flyers management.
He was in goal Sunday night for only the second time since Nov. 10, leading the Flyers to an 8-4 win over Hartford.
St. Croix, a backup in his previous four seasons with Philadelphia, compiled a 3.45 goals-against average in 16 games. He was a fourth-round pick in the 1975 amateur draft.
Larocque, 30, had a 4.89 goals-against average in 16 games for Toronto. He came to the Leafs from Montreal in March 1981.
'They said if they had a chance to trade me they would,' Larocque said. 'I'm an older player and they're going with young players.'
Larocque, who twice shared the Vezina Trophy while with Montreal and had a 2.09 goal against average in the 1976-77 season, felt he profited from his time with the Leafs.
'I thought it was a great experience,' he said. 'When I came here, we were in 16th place and they changed the team from scratch. And when you change the team all around, it hurts the goaltender most.'
With the Flyers, Larocque will be playing behind Swedish rookie Pelle Lindbergh, who had been one of the league's top goalies before being sidelined recently with an injury suffered in an exhibition game against the Soviet Union.
'I've got to go there to play well, just do the best I can,' said Larocque.