Friday, January 21, 2011

Flashback Friday: Wayne Gretzky's Ninety Nine All-Stars Tour During the 94-95 Lockout

Every Friday we will be adding one of our favorite hockey videos from over the years. Some might be painful, some might be just plain dirty, but they all have a story behind them that make them downright awesome and great to watch over and over again.
Who remembers the Ninety Nine All Stars Tour? During the 1994-95 lockout, Wayne Gretzky assembled a team of some of his friends to tour around and play other professional club teams and local All-Star teams. The purpose of the tour was to stay in shape during the lockout, raise money for charities, as well as promote hockey around the world. We're sure it was a bit of a European vacation for some players as well...

The Ninety Nine All Stars roster was made up of:

Goalies
Grant Fuhr, Kelly Hrudey

Defensemen

Paul Coffey, Todd Gill, Rob Blake, Charlie Huddy, Al MacInnis, Marty McSorley

Forwards
Wayne Gretzky, Pat Conacher, Mark Messier, Russ Courtnall, Sergei Fedorov, Tony Granato, Brett Hull, Steve Larmer, Rick Tocchet, Kirk Muller, Steve Yzerman

Coaches
Head coach - Doug Wilson. Assistant Coach: Walter Gretzky


The team played eight games in five countries: USA, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Germany. They had some challenging games, finishing the tour with a 5-3 record.

     Dec 1, 1994 4-3 loss vs. Detroit Vipers (IHL)
     Dec 3, 1994 7-1 win vs. Jokerit (Finland)
     Dec 4, 1994 4-3 OT loss vs. Ilves Tampere (Finland)
     Dec 6, 1994 6-3 win vs. Norwegian Spectrum All Stars
     Dec 9, 1994 9-3 win vs. Djurgarden (Sweden)
     Dec 10, 1994 5-2 win vs. Vastra Frolunda (Sweden)
     Dec 12, 1994 6-5 OT loss vs. Malmo (Sweden)
     Dec 14, 1994 8-5 win vs. German All Stars

Gretzky led all teammates in scoring for the 99 All-Stars with 7 goals and 6 assists for 13 points in 8 games.

These games weren't like the All-Star games in the NHL either. There was hitting and fighting; Marty McSorley even got a Gordie Howe Hat Trick against the German All-Stars. The Tour was a huge draw in Europe with fans looking to catch a glimpse of their NHL heroes. Here's a clip from a Swedish broadcaster when the 99's played Malmo IF:


In Europe, the Ninety Niners also wore jerseys that looked very similar to the Detroit Red Wings vintage jersey. Fun stuff.


It would have been nice if the NHLers did a tour like this during the 2004-05 lockout. Instead we got treated to Joe Thornton and Rick Nash winning the Spengler Cup for HC Davos, watching the Sedins and Naslund for MoDo in the Elitserien on Sportsnet, and Canada dominate the World Juniors.

7 comments:

  1. I had no idea this ever happened... this is so cool

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  2. that NHLPA logo is horrendous

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  3. I just love that Todd Gill was on this team..lol

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  4. Rob Blake and Stevie Y look so young in those pictures...holy shit

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  5. The Jaromir Jagr Sixty Eights would have had a nice ring to it

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  6. jagr is hands down the best player to have ever played hockey

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  7. i hope you mean best play ever other then berezin

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