Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 09/02/10 at 02:27 PM ET
NEW YORK (September 2, 2010) – Hockey Hall of Famer Cam Neely, college coaching legends Jack Parker and Jerry York and AHL President David Andrews have been named recipients of the 2010 Lester Patrick Trophy for outstanding service to hockey in the United States.
The award, one of the most prestigious in hockey, was presented to the National Hockey League by the New York Rangers in 1966. It honors the memory of Lester Patrick, who spent 50 years in hockey as a player, coach and general manager and was a pioneer in the sport’s development.
The recipients will be honored at an evening reception in Boston in late October. Further details on the event will be announced at a later date.
One of the greatest power forwards in NHL history, Neely also is one of the most revered Boston Bruins of all time. Though cut short by injury, his career was prolific – he scored 395 goals with 299 assists and 1,241 penalty minutes in 726 regular-season games and 57 more goals in 93 playoff games. He scored 50 goals in a season three times—including in 1993-94, when he reached the milestone in just his 44th game, fewer than anyone other than Wayne Gretzky.
The winner of the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy in 1994, Neely had his jersey No. 8 retired by the Bruins. In 2005, he was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. Two years later, he joined the Bruins’ front office as vice president and, on June 16, 2010, he was named team president
A Boston University institution, Parker played on Terrier teams that won three straight Beanpot Tournaments (1966-68) and reached the NCAA semifinals in 1966 and ’67. The Somerville, Mass., native captained the 1967-68 team.
He became head coach of his alma mater in 1973 and has been a relentless and resounding success ever since. Parker has coached BU to three national championships (1978, 1995, 2009) and been named the Spencer Penrose Division I coach of the year three times. He is one of only three coaches in NCAA history (Ron Mason, Jerry York) to have won 800 games and the only one to have done it at one school. Entering his 38th season as BU’s head coach, Parker has compiled a record of 836-432-104 while coaching many of the game’s greats – including Mike Eruzione, Jim Craig, Keith Tkachuk, Tony Amonte, Chris Drury and Rick DiPietro.
A rival of Parker’s since the two battled as Massachusetts high school stars, York was a prolific scorer for Boston College from 1964-65 through 1966-67. In 81 collegiate games, York scored 64 goals and racked up 134 points while being named a first-team All-American as a senior. He is the second-winningest coach in NCAA history – his 850 career victories are second only to the 924 for the retired Ron Mason – a four-time NCAA champion and one of only two men to have coached two schools (Bowling Green and Boston College) to national championships.
After seven years at Clarkson College and 15 at Bowling Green, where he won the 1984 NCAA title, York returned to his alma mater in 1994. He has since built Boston College into a perennial power, winning seven Hockey East tournament titles and three more national championships – including the 2010 title. He has coached three Hobey Baker Award winners (George McPhee, Brian Holzinger and Mike Mottau) as well as Rob Blake, Dan Bylsma, Brooks Orpik and Rob Scuderi.
An accomplished goaltender who starred for Dalhousie University and the University of British Columbia and played professionally in The Netherlands, Andrews has been the president of the American Hockey League since 1994, guiding the AHL through a period of explosive growth.
Under his direction, the AHL has expanded to include 30 teams and stretch across the North American continent while becoming the sole primary development league for the NHL. Andrews was instrumental in restoring the AHL All-Star Classic in 1995, after a 35-year absence, and the event now is televised internationally. A native of Nova Scotia who now resides in Wilbraham, Mass., Andrews has been inducted into the the British Columbia Hockey Hall of Fame (2005) and the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame (2006).
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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