A Hockey Fights Cancer conversation: In loving memory of Dale Hawerchuk
To reflect on the continued legacy of Dale Hawerchuk, Eddie Olczyk, is joined by current NHL players coached by Dale and a pair of his former teammates.
Eddie Olczyk, Hockey Fights Cancer ambassador and former NHL player with a Stanley Cup and 1,031 regular-season games to his name, defeated stage three colon cancer.
He knows he’s one of the lucky ones.
For over 22 years, the NHL and NHLPA have come together annually in support of Hockey Fights Cancer as proponents in the battle against the disease. Since 1998 more than $28 million has been directed to cutting-edge cancer research and support programs for families battling cancer and moving past it.
This past August, the hockey world lost one of its beloved former players and ambassadors in Hockey Hall of Famer Dale Hawerchuk, who passed away after battling stomach cancer. Dale greatly impacted the lives of his former teammates, the cities he played in and the players that he went on to coach.
Whenever Dale told you to do something, if you did it, you scored. Instantly. I have ten difference occasions where it happened to me. I remember it happening to Scheif, I remember it happening to Tanner Pearson. Aaron Ekblad, Florida Panthers
Gone way too soon, but he always taught us to work hard and fight... Fight for everything. Me being a smaller, guy, he'd always say that to me. Fight for your ice, fight to score, fight in front of the net... I couldn't imagine what he was going through but he was definitely a fighter. Gone too soon, I can't stress that enough. A great man, he'll be missed. Andrew Mangiapane, Calgary Flames
I definitely wouldn't be here, where I am today without Dale. Unbelievable hockey mind. Unbelievable person in general. Every day there was something that he taught me and I've tried to take that for the rest of my career – that every day you can learn something, every day you can can work on something in practice... He loved the game and he taught me how to love watching hockey and how to love playing the game. Mark Scheifele, Winnipeg Jets
To reflect on that impact and his continued legacy, Eddie is joined by Mark Scheifele of the Winnipeg Jets, Aaron Ekblad of the Florida Panthers and Andrew Mangiapane of the Calgary Flames, who were all coached by Dave as players for the Ontario Hockey League's Barrie Colts. The group is also joined by a few of Dave’s former teammates from his playing career – long-time NHL defenceman, Dave Babych, and Hockey Hall of Fame defenceman, Paul Coffey.
From favourite moments and instilling a deep love of the game to final phone calls with the man that impacted them all, memories are traded in the full conversation, available here.
Since its inception in 1998, Hockey Fights Cancer – a joint initiative by the National Hockey League (NHL) and National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) – has resulted in donations of more than $28 million to support national and local cancer research institutions, children’s hospitals, player charities, and local charities. Hockey Fights Cancer unites the hockey community in support of people impacted by cancer and their families.