On August 18th, former Winnipeg Jet and Hall of Famer Dale Hawerchuk passed away after a battle with stomach cancer. Hawerchuk was the leading scorer from the original Jets. In his honor, before Game 4 of the Flyers and Canadiens, a moment of silence was held, at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto.
After an incredibly brave and difficult battle with cancer, our dad has passed away. My family is so proud of him and the way he fought. #HawerchukStrong pic.twitter.com/xZ1xcaqAOv
— Eric Hawerchuk (@EricHawerchuk) August 18, 2020
Hawerchuk’s hard work on the ice kept the Winnipeg Jets in Stanley Cup contention throughout the 80’s. He was a six-time 100 point scorer and held franchise records for career goals (379) and points (929). These records were later broken by Coyote’s captain Shane Doan. Doan is currently the last active original Jet in the NHL.
In 1981, the Jets selected Hawerchuk with the 1st overall pick in the NHL draft. That year, he won the Calder Trophy. He put up 103 points along with putting 45 pucks in the back of the net. Hawerchuk was the first 18-year old player to reach 100 points. From that point forward, he was viewed as a star and one of the best active players. In his prolific career with the Jets, Hawerchuk never saw playoff hockey past the second round. He was also apart of the Canadian National Ice Hockey Team and helped them win the Canada Cup in 1987 & 1991.
It was after 7 years with Winnipeg that relocated to a new team. Hawerchuk was traded to the Sabres in 1990, where injury eventually slowed down his production. He was then on the move again to the Blues, who then traded him to the Flyers in 1996.
It was with the Flyers he saw Stanley Cup Final hockey, but the team was swept by the Detroit Red Wings in a 4-0 series. Shortly after the sweep, Hawerchuk called it a career and retired from hockey due to a degenerative left hip. He finished his career with 1,409 points in 1,188 NHL games.
In 2001, Hawerchuk was elected into the NHL Hall of Fame. Six years later, his name was put in the Arizona Coyotes Ring of Honor. After retirement, he became coach for Barrie of the OHL in 2010, but was forced into leaving the team for health reasons in 2019.
His career is one of the more prolific ones in the NHL. He is one of the few star players to have never lifted the Stanley Cup. His name will always be remembered by the Jets and Coyotes organizations, as well as the rest of the NHL and its fans.