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Abel to Yzerman

The people’s Dino

Of the many notable players who played for the Detroit Red Wings in the early-to-mid 90’s but departed before the Wings’ Stanley Cup run, I don’t think there’s any doubt that the Sarnia-born Dino Ciccarelli was perhaps the most popular player not named Bob Probert.  Ciccarelli even outpaced Paul Coffey in terms of the number of jerseys worn in the stands because Ciccarelli’s hard-working, scrappy nature and willingness to get the stuffing beaten out of him to stand in front of the net were adored by the Wings’ faithful (and there’s no doubt that Tomas Holmstrom plays the way he does because Scotty Bowman needed to find a player to succeed Ciccarelli in 1997).  The Washington Capitals are honoring a player who only played four seasons for the Wings tonight, and Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau summarized Ciccarelli’s fan appeal perfectly in speaking to the Washington Post’s Katie Carrera:

Ciccarelli, who was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame this year, only spent four seasons with the Capitals from 1988-89 to 1991-92, but even still he became one of the enduring icons of the franchise, particularly for a certain age group of fans. Ciccarelli finished his career with 608 goals and 1,200 points in 1,232 NHL games.

“When you’re a smaller guy and you play hard people love you,” Boudreau said. “Because they love the common man that works and that was him, add a few goals to that—not a few 600—and you’re going to get somebody who’s going to be very very popular with the people.”

Ciccarelli only played for four of his 21 seasons in Detroit, but around here, Dino’s a Red Wing first and foremost because he was a classic blue-collar player.

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Comments

WestWing's avatar

Great stuff as always George.  Haven’t been posting much here in recent days, but I haven’t missed any of the multiple-times-per-day DRW news and info fests.  It’s really cool that we have a full on hockey geek on the beat.  Believe me this stuff does not go unappreciated!!

Good to see the wounded slowly making their way back into the lineup.  Like the song says: put more water in the soup, there’s better days a-comin’...

Posted by WestWing from Portland, Oregon on 02/01/11 at 09:56 PM ET

behind the net in G.R.'s avatar

I hate to break bad news to all that follow the red wings but alfa tango and the surf has been taken off the internet by home land security.  WTF

Posted by behind the net in G.R. on 02/01/11 at 11:36 PM ET

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About Abel to Yzerman

Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com