Friday, July 18, 2008

Swedish Star Jan Erik Vidgren

We travel to the northern reaches of Sweden to locate our next Hometown Hockey Hero. Jan Erik Vidgren hails from Pitea, Sweden. The Swedish city has more recently produced NHL stars Tomas Holmstrom and former New York Islanders defenseman Stefan Persson. Between the two they account for eight Stanley Cups.
Vidgren, better known as 'Jante" in Swedish hockey circles, was a highly skilled forward who spent his entire career (1963-1980) playing around the Arctic Circle.
Born in 1948, Vidgren has reached the upper levels of Swedish hockey by 1963. His career started with Ojeby IF where he tallied 257 goals before trades sent him to Pitea HC and Skelleftea HC. He would score another 220 goals after the trade from Ojeby.
Today Vidgren remains in Pitea and works for the city as a firefighter. Vidgren remains a huge fan of the game an follows fellow Swedes who currently play in the NHL.

Monday, April 09, 2007

All-American Lane MacDonald

It is hard to imagine a more successful amateur career in the United States. Lane MacDonald did it all in the 1980's. MacDonald was born in Tulsa but grew up in Wisconsin. The Ivy League called and MacDonald was off to Harvard University. He was twice named All-American and led the Crimson to a 1989 NCAA title. The 1989 season also was special as MacDonald captured the Hobey Baker as the NCAA's top collegiate player.

As if his accomplishments weren't enough at Harvard, MacDonald also was a key member of the 1988 US Olympic team that competed in Calgary.

MacDonald was drafted by the Calgary Flames, but a series of head injuries ended his career by the time the 1990's arrived. The left winger spent a single season in Switzerland with Lugano before having to retire. In 2005, he was inducted into the US Hockey Hall of Fame.

Today, MacDonald is a General Partner in an equity firm and lives is the Boston area with his wife and three children. His father, Lowell, was a gifted NHL player scoring 180 goals in just over 500 games.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Clarkson Player and Coach Ron Frazer

Ron Frazer had settled in Hannawa Falls, New York, but his hockey roots travel back to Ottawa, Ontario. As a high school star in Ottawa, Frazer faced off against his top rival- Johnny Quilty for the city championship. Quilty's St. Patrick's College topped Frazer's Nepean High School. Quilty was off to the Montreal Canadiens and the rookie of the year and Frazer was off to Clarkson, after a season with the junior Senators, and a college scholarship.
In 1942, frazer and Clarkson played a limited schedule due to the war. Frazer scored 5 goals and 3 assists in a single game. The following yearFfrazer's hockey career came to an end when a giant cell tumor on his left foot had to be surgically removed.
Now retired, Frazer continued to coach at many different levels. In 1975 he began the Clarkson Women's hockey team and coached the team for 8 seasons.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Lt Col James C. Magnus USMCR Ret.

James Magnus hockey career is impressive. His military is even more impressive. When the Marine Corp called, Magnus headed for for Korea. Prior to Korea, Magnus was a pilot in World War II. The Minnesota native also spent 23 years in the National Guard and Reserves. Now a resident of Arizona, Magnus is a member of the Minnesota Aviation Hall of Fame and now enjoys playing golf in Arizona.
On the ice, the right winger was a high school star in St. Paul beforing playing from 1938-1941 with the University of Minnesota. Magnus also played for the St. Paul Koppy's in the senior amateur circuit in his home state.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Edmonton's Finest- Rocky Maze

When did junior hockey star Rocky Maze first appear on a trading card? It may very well be his Edmonton Police Service 2000 issue. The card inicates he has spent 22 years with EPS. The card also states his favorite sport is hockey.
In the early 1970's, Maze played for the Edmonton Oil Kings and was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in 1976. Maze was also drafted by the WHA Cleveland Crusaders. The Edmonton native went to camp with the Buffalo Sabres in the mid -1970's and spent some time playing for the Charlotte Checkers in the Southern League. He became disillusioned with the game and knew the odds of making the NHL were slim. Maze returned to Edmonton and gave up the NHL dream after a single season. He applied to the EPS in September 1977 and the rest is history.
Maze has become involved in coaching and is a member of the 'Faded Blues' police hockey team.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Staff Sergeant Edgar Montigny

Edgar Montigny took a tour of the east coast in the the late 1940's and early 1950's. Playing in the old Eastern Hockey League, Montigny played for the Atlantic City Seagulls, Boston Olympics, New York Rovers and the Johnstown Jets. There were other stops as well. Towns like Windsor, St. Paul , Fort Wayne and Grand Rapids. Montigny never stayed in one town too long.
After his playing days had come to an end, Montigny headed back to Canada and landed a job working in the mines in Timmins, Ontario. Working underground did not appeal to him so Montigny joined the Police Department. He worked for the department for 30 years and retired as a Staff Sergeant. Most of his days on the force included investigations, photography and fingerprinting. After retiring in 1987, Montigny moved out west to Salmon Arm and has been there ever since.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Publisher Stanley S. Hubbard

Stanley S. Hubbard is very well know in broadcasting circles. A litle less known in the hockey community. Hubbard's father started the Hubbard Broadcasting Company in 1924. Hubbard has continued his family's traditions of excellence and innovation in broadcasting, and taken them to new heights. The son of Stanley E. Hubbard, he joined Hubbard Broadcasting in 1951, became its president in 1967, and its chairman, president, and chief executive officer in 1983.
Hubbard also was a member of the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers in the 1950's with players like Jim Mattson, Dick Meredith, Wendy Johnson, Ken Yackel and the great John Mayasich.
Hubbard didn't start skating until the 6th grade. He went on to play high school hockey at the Breck School. Hubbard served as Captain in his senior season. His teammate Paul Johnson went on to win a gold medal at the 1960 Winter Olympics.