Steve Yzerman was born in Cranbrook, British Columbia and would go on to have one of the most successful careers in the NHL; that is not officially over if you take into consideration his front office work that continues to this day.
The right handed Center certainly caught the attention of the NHL when he recorded 92 points in 50 games with the Nepean Raiders of the Central Junior Hockey League (CJHL), the next two seasons Yzerman spent with the Peterborough Petes of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL).
His first season in the OHL, Yzerman recorded 64 points in 58 games play; the following season, 1983, Yzerman went off scoring 42 goals, and 49 assists for a total of 91 points in 56 games played.
Steve Yzerman was then drafted by the Detroit Red Wings first overall in the 1983 NHL Entry Draft.
In his rookie year Yzerman recorded 87 points in 80 games, and was the first eighteen year old ever to play in the NHL All-Star Game, this is regarded as one of the best rookie seasons any NHL player has ever had.
Prior to the 1986 season Steve Yzerman was chosen as Captain of the Detroit Red Wings; Yzerman would serve as Captain of Detroit for nineteen seasons, 1,303 games to be exact (the longest serving Captain in NHL history).
Over the course of his entire career in Detroit, “Stevie Y” made ten All-Star Game appearances, twenty playoff appearances, was awarded the Lester B. Pearson Award in 1989, the Selke Trophy in 2000, the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy in 2003, and the Lester Patrick Trophy in 2006.
“The Captain” is arguably one of the greatest two-way Forwards to play the game with six 100-plus point seasons, and five 50-plus goal seasons, however was incredible defensively which was rewarded when he won the Selke Trophy in 2000 as the best defensive Forward in the NHL.
Yzerman also brought the Stanley Cup back to Detroit after 42 years, three times to be exact (1997, 1998, and 2002); following retirement Yzerman was an executive for the Red Wings when they won the Stanley Cup again in 2008.
In 1998’s Stanley Cup run, Steve Yzerman recorded 24 points in 22 games played and was awarded the Conn Smythe as playoff’s MVP as Detroit swept the Washington Capitals in the Stanley Cup Finals to win back-to-back Stanley Cups.
The Cranbrook native’s best statistical seasons came in 1989, and 1993 where he recorded 155, and 137 points respectively in 80 games played both seasons.
When Yzerman retired from the NHL, he had played a total of 1,514 games, and had scored 692 goals (10th all-time, 2nd Detroit history), and 1,063 assists (9th all-time, 1st Detroit history), for a grand total of 1,755 points (7th all-time, 2nd Detroit history).
Internationally Steve Yzerman represented Canada tremendously, and brought success to his country in numerous international tournaments.
Starting in 1983, Yzerman won a bronze medal at the World Junior Championships, in 1984 he won the Canada Cup, in 1985, and 1989 he took second in the World Cup, as well as taking second place in the 1996 World Championships, before finally earning himself a gold medal in the 2002 Winter Olympics where he recorded six points, in six games.
Following retirement, Steve Yzerman was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009, the International Ice Hockey Hall of Fame in 2014, and named to the Order of Hockey in Canada by Hockey Canada in 2014.
Yzerman’s number nineteen was also retired by the Detroit Red Wings in 2007.
Currently Yzerman serves as the General Manager, and Executive Vice President of the Red Wings following eight seasons as the General Manager of the Tampa Bay Lightning where he was awarded the NHL General Manager of the Year Award in 2015 after the Lightning fell to Chicago in the Stanley Cup Finals.
There is absolutely no doubt that Steve “The Captain” Yzerman was the epitome of not only a captain, but also a complete, unselfish two-way Forward.
Photo Source: http://www.thehockeywriters.com
Would you like to advertise with the Game Changer Sports Network? We have the perfect opportunity for any and all businesses please contact Jake at Info@GameChangerSportsNetwork.com to discuss potential advertising space with us!