Ebbie Goodfellow was one of many players from Ottawa to star in the NHL. His amateur hockey career began with the Ottawa Montagnards of the OCHL where, in 1927-28, he was an All-Star centre and leading scorer in the playoffs as the Montagnards won the City Championship.
He was spotted by scouts from the Detroit organization and was assigned to the Detroit Olympics of the Canadian Professional Hockey League in 1928-29, where he again achieved All-Star status and led the league in scoring with 26 goals and 34 points. He made his NHL debut in 1929-30 with the Detroit Cougars, scoring 17 goals.
Although he began his NHL career as a centre, he earned greater fame when he moved to defence in the 1934-35 season. Goodfellow was named to the NHL's Second All-Star Team in 1936, and twice named the First All-Star Team, in the 1936-37 and 1939-40 seasons. He was chosen to appear in the NHL All-Star games held in 1937 and 1939.
Goodfellow won the Hart Trophy as the league's most valuable player in 1940, and was a member of three Stanley Cup winning teams with Detroit in 1936, 1937, and 1943. In 1943 he was the last playing coach to guide his team to victory. He played his entire NHL career in the Detroit organization, retiring as a player after the Red Wings' 1943 Cup victory, though he later coached the Chicago Black Hawks in the 1950-51 and 1951-52 seasons.
Ebbie Goodfellow was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1963.