Semenko in 2016
|Born||July 12, 1957|
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
|Died|| June 29, 2017 59) (aged|
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
|Height||6 ft 3 in (191 cm)|
|Weight||215 lb (98 kg; 15 st 5 lb)|
|Played for|| Edmonton Oilers |
Toronto Maple Leafs
|NHL Draft|| 25th overall, 1977 |
Minnesota North Stars
|WHA Draft|| 21st overall, 1977 |
David John Semenko (July 12, 1957 – June 29, 2017) was a Canadian professional ice hockey player, coach, scout and colour commentator. During his National Hockey League (NHL) career, Semenko played for the Edmonton Oilers, Hartford Whalers and Toronto Maple Leafs as an enforcer. During his tenure with Edmonton, he notably protected Wayne Gretzky as an "on-ice bodyguard" during Gretzky's early career. Semenko won two Stanley Cups with the Oilers in 1984 and 1985. He was also the last player to score a goal in the World Hockey Association (WHA) before it folded and merged with the NHL.
Following his retirement as a player, he became a radio commentator of Oilers' games. Semenko died on June 29, 2017, from liver and pancreatic cancer.
Semenko played junior hockey for the Brandon Wheat Kings.He was originally selected 25th overall in 1977 by the Minnesota North Stars of the NHL and the Houston Aeros of the World Hockey Association (WHA).
The Aeros traded Semenko to the Oilers just before their 1977–78 season.He spent his first two professional years as a member of the Oilers in the WHA before the NHL–WHA merger. He scored the final goal in WHA history in Game 6 of the 1979 Avco Cup finals, which the Oilers lost to the Winnipeg Jets.
When the Oilers joined the NHL, Semenko's rights were retained by the North Stars. The Oilers traded their second-and third-round draft picks in the 1979 NHL Entry Draft to acquire his rights from the North Stars, who then drafted future Hockey Hall of Famer Neal Broten. The trade also gave the Oilers a third round pick, which was used to select future Oilers superstar Mark Messier.
An acknowledged enforcer, Semenko was Wayne Gretzky's "on-ice bodyguard" early in Gretzky's career in Edmonton, beginning in the WHA in 1978 and ending when Semenko was traded to the Hartford Whalers in 1986.Semenko is considered one of the toughest players ever in the NHL. After Gretzky won a car for being chosen as the MVP of the 1983 NHL All-Star game, he gifted the car to Semenko to show his appreciation for his on-ice work.
Semenko fought boxing legend Muhammad Ali in an exhibition on June 12, 1983.The match was officially a draw after going three rounds, but the Associated Press reported Ali was not seriously trying and was just toying with Semenko.
After brief stops with the Hartford Whalers and Toronto Maple Leafs, Semenko retired following the 1987–88 season. He finished his 575-game NHL career with 65 goals, 153 points and 1,175 penalty minutes.Semenko also recorded 70 fights over his career.
After retiring, Semenko became a colour commentator on Oilers radio broadcasts and was an assistant coach with the Oilers during the 1996–97 season.He also served as a professional scout for the team from 1997 until 2015.
Semenko died on June 29, 2017, 13 days before his 60th birthday and shortly after being diagnosed with liver and pancreatic cancer.His funeral was held at Rogers Place in Edmonton, which was open for the public to attend.
|1974–75||Brandon Wheat Kings||WCHL||12||2||1||3||12||4||0||0||0||0|
|1975–76||Brandon Wheat Kings||WCHL||72||8||5||13||194||5||0||0||0||0|
|1976–77||Brandon Wheat Kings||WCHL||61||27||33||60||265||16||3||4||7||61|
|1977–78||Brandon Wheat Kings||WCHL||7||10||5||15||40||—||—||—||—||—|
|1987–88||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||70||2||3||5||107||—||—||—||—||—|
June 14, 1977: Selected by the Minnesota North Stars in the second round, 25th overall, during the 1977 NHL amateur draft.
June 16, 1977: Selected by the Houston Aeros in the second round, 21st overall, during the 1977 WHA Amateur Draft.
November, 1977: Traded to the Edmonton Oilers by Houston in exchange for future considerations.
June 9, 1979: Reclaimed by Minnesota from Edmonton during the 1979 NHL Expansion Draft.
August 9, 1979: Traded to Edmonton by Minnesota in exchange for Edmonton's second-round (Neal Broten) and third-round draft pick (Kevin Maxwell) in the 1979 NHL Entry Draft.
December 12, 1986: Traded to the Hartford Whalers by Edmonton in exchange for Hartford's third-round draft pick (Trevor Sim) in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft.
September 8, 1987: Traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for Bill Root.
The Edmonton Oilers are a professional ice hockey team based in Edmonton. They compete in the National Hockey League (NHL) as a member of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference.
The World Hockey Association was a professional ice hockey major league that operated in North America from 1972 to 1979. It was the first major league to compete with the National Hockey League (NHL) since the collapse of the Western Hockey League in 1926. Although the WHA was not the first league since that time to attempt to challenge the NHL's supremacy, it was by far the most successful in the modern era.
James Charles Carson is an American former professional hockey player. He played 10 seasons in the National Hockey League with five different teams. In 1988, he became only the second teenager in NHL history to score 50 goals in a season; the first was Wayne Gretzky.
The 1987–88 NHL season was the 71st season of the National Hockey League. It was an 80-game season with the top four teams in each division advancing to the Stanley Cup Playoffs. This season would see the Edmonton Oilers win their fourth Stanley Cup in five years by sweeping the Boston Bruins 4–0 in the Stanley Cup Final. In the process of their cup win, Edmonton lost only two games, a record for the "16 wins" playoff format.
Neal LaMoy Broten is an American former professional ice hockey player. A member of the 1980 US Olympic hockey team that won the gold medal at Lake Placid in 1980, Broten was inducted into the US Hockey Hall of Fame in 2000 having appeared in 1,099 National Hockey League (NHL) regular season games from 1981 to 1997 with the Minnesota North Stars, Dallas Stars, New Jersey Devils and Los Angeles Kings. He is the older brother of Aaron and Paul Broten.
The 1985–86 NHL season was the 69th season of the National Hockey League. This season saw the league's Board of Governors introduce the Presidents' Trophy, which would go to the team with the best overall record in the NHL regular season. The Edmonton Oilers would be the first winners of this award.
The 1980–81 NHL season was the 64th season of the National Hockey League. The New York Islanders were the top regular season team and the top playoff team, winning their second consecutive Stanley Cup.
The 1979–80 NHL season was the 63rd season of the National Hockey League. This season saw the addition of four teams from the disbanded World Hockey Association as expansion franchises. The Edmonton Oilers, Winnipeg Jets, New England Whalers, and Quebec Nordiques joined the NHL, bringing the total to 21 teams. The other two WHA teams were paid to disband.
The 1978–79 WHA season was the seventh and final season of the World Hockey Association (WHA). Prior to the start of the season, the Houston Aeros folded leaving seven teams to start the season. Only six would finish however, as the Indianapolis Racers folded after 25 games on December 15, 1978. The remaining six teams each played 80 games, including one game each per team against a Soviet All-Star squad and the Czechoslovakian National Team, the second consecutive year for this arrangement. The Soviet team won four of their six games and tied another; the Czechoslovak team only won once and tied once against four losses. In addition, because the Racers had folded after playing an odd number of games, the Edmonton Oilers played the Finnish National Team once at home so as to allow each of the six surviving WHA teams to play 80 regular season games. The Oilers won by a score of 8-4, a result which in itself made no difference by the end of the regular season which Edmonton won by an eleven point margin over the Quebec Nordiques.
The 1979 NHL Entry Draft took place on August 9, 1979, at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal, Quebec. The National Hockey League (NHL) teams selected 126 players eligible for entry into professional ranks, in the reverse order of the 1978–79 NHL season and playoff standings. The draft was the first to be conducted after the NHL-WHA merger. As part of the terms of the merger, the four former WHA teams had joined the NHL on the condition that they be placed at the bottom of the draft order, as opposed to the top of the order as is usually the case for expansion teams.
Mark Steven Howe is an American former professional ice hockey left winger and later defenseman who played sixteen seasons in the National Hockey League (NHL) following six seasons in the World Hockey Association (WHA). He is currently serving as the director of pro scouting for the Detroit Red Wings.
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The 1979 NHL Expansion Draft was held on June 13, 1979. The draft took place to fill the rosters of the National Hockey League's new teams for the 1979–80 season: the Edmonton Oilers, Hartford Whalers, Quebec Nordiques and Winnipeg Jets. These four teams had joined the NHL after a merger agreement was reached with the World Hockey Association (WHA).
Jack Anthony Carlson is an American former professional ice hockey forward.
Warren Frederick Miller is an American former professional ice hockey player. After playing for South St. Paul High School in Minnesota, Miller enrolled at the University of Minnesota where he had a four-year collegiate career. Miller helped the Golden Gophers to two NCAA championship titles in his sophomore (1974) and senior (1976) seasons while playing for Hall of Fame coach Herb Brooks.
The 1979–80 Edmonton Oilers season was the Oilers' eighth season, their first season in the National Hockey League (NHL), as they were one of the teams that were part of the WHA-NHL merger that took place on June 22, 1979.
The 1979–80 Winnipeg Jets season was the franchise's eighth season since its inception in 1972, and its first season in the National Hockey League.
The 1979 merger of the NHL and WHA was the culmination of several years of negotiations between the National Hockey League (NHL) and the World Hockey Association (WHA) that resulted in the WHA and all of its surviving franchises folding in return for the owners of four of the WHA's six surviving teams being granted expansion franchises that commenced play in the NHL for the 1979–80 season. The agreement officially took effect on June 22, 1979. The merger ended the seven-year existence of the WHA and re-established the NHL as the lone major league in North American professional ice hockey.
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The history of the Edmonton Oilers dates back to 1972, when the team was established as a professional ice hockey team based in Edmonton, Alberta. The team originally played in the World Hockey Association (WHA), before joining the National Hockey League (NHL) in 1979. The team played its first season in 1972–73 as one of 12 founding franchises of the major professional World Hockey Association (WHA). They were originally supposed to be one of two WHA teams in Alberta. However, when the Broncos folded before the WHA's first season began, the Edmonton Oilers were renamed the Alberta Oilers. They returned to using the Edmonton Oilers name for the 1973–74 season, and have been called that ever since. The Oilers subsequently joined the NHL in 1979; one of four franchises introduced through the NHL merger with the WHA.