Denis Savard may not have been the perfect coach for the Chicago Blackhawks (but he was a decent bench boss at the time for the team), but he is currently flourishing as the team’s ambassador. The former center was the biggest star on the team in the 1980s, and his stint as coach in the late 2000s helped revive interest in the team.
He just wasn’t the guy to bring them the Cup. But as ambassador, he’s perfect. And I caught up to him last week as he helped unveil the Hockey City Classic, a college hockey double header between the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Miami Red Hawks, Minnesota Golden Gophers and Wisconsin Badgers.
He was asked about the 2009 NHL Winter Classic
“It was a great event, something people will remember forever, the one we had at Wrigley Field, us and Detroit. I think this one will be close as it was at Wrigley Field. Should be a great day, great day for people who are gonna be able to watch hockey. I’m sure Chicago is going to support this, a lotta people come in and hopefully this place ’ll be sold out,”
And the Blackhawks were very involved in making this happen:
“The Hawks are always involved in everything that has to do with hockey, with youth hockey, also with college so along with Jay Blunk and John McDonough the Blackhawks are able to help out to get this thing on the right track. Anything that’s go to do with hockey in Chicago the Hawks have got a lot to do with it. Nice to be involved with it myself.”
Does Savvy himself have a rooting interest in the game?
“No, not for me personally but we’ve had kids that have been drafted by the Hawks, from Notre Dame, Miami of Ohio, Minnesota, all the colleges across America. The one thing I’m involved with is a lot of those kids who are here today youth hockey that I’ve coached the last couple years here and there doing some hockey cutting for those kids it will be a fun week for them.”
Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, an official Google News site generating millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Chicago Tribune.com, Fox Sports, MSN, Walter Football and Yardbarker
A Fulbright scholar and MBA, Banks has appeared on live radio all over the world; and he’s a member of the Football Writers Association of America, U.S. Basketball Writers Association, and Society of Professional Journalists. The President of the United States follows him on Twitter (@Paul_M_BanksTSB) You should tooFollow paulmbanks