If Barack Obama is the people’s President, Judge Wapner was head of The People’s Court, and The Rock is the People’s Champion, then surely Steve Yzerman is the People’s Captain.
Yzerman had a long, 23-year NHL career. Not all of it was pretty, not all of it was good, but Yzerman left the game in 2006 as one of the most beloved players to have ever laced up a pair of skates in the NHL.
Drafted 4th overall by the Detroit Red Wings in 1983, Yzerman would spend his entire NHL playing career with the club. He would serve as the team’s captain from 1986 to 2006, the longest captaincy of any player with the same team in NHL history.
Steve Yzerman Career Stats and Achievements
Regular season career stats:
Games played: 1514, Goals: 692, Assists: 1063, Points: 1755
Playoff career stats:
Games played: 196, Goals: 70, Assists: 115, Points: 185
• NHL All-Star Appearances: 1984, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1997, 1999, and 2000
• Lester B. Pearson Award; awarded annually to the league’s most outstanding player in the regular season as judged by the members of the NHL Players Association - 1989
• Conn Smythe Trophy; Playoff MVP - 1998
• Frank J. Selke Trophy; awarded annually to the NHL forward who demonstrates the most skill in the defensive component of the game - 2000
• 3 Stanley Cup Championships - 1997, 1998, and 2002
• Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy; awarded annually to the player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to ice hockey - 2003
• Lester Patrick Trophy; presented by the NHL and USA Hockey to honor a recipient's contribution to ice hockey in the United States - 2006
• Sixth, all time in NHL points behind Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Gordie Howe, Ron Francis and Marcel Dionne.
• First in Red Wings history in assists; second in points and goals; third in games played
• Longest-serving captain for one team in NHL history
• His number 19 was retired by the Canadian Men's National Team in 2005 and retired by Detroit Red Wings in 2007
• Ranked #6 in The Hockey News The Top 60 Since 1967 - The Best Players of the Post Expansion Era
• Member of the 1984 Canada Cup championship team
• Olympic gold medal as part of the 2002 men’s national ice hockey team
• In 2008, Yzerman was inducted into the Ottawa Sports Hall of Fame, the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame and Canada's Sports Hall of Fame.
Yzerman is widely admired and respected in the hockey community by fans, players and executives alike. A classier leader, teammate and friend the NHL has never seen – and may not see again.
Yzerman will be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009.