|5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
200 lb (91 kg)
|Born||July 31, 1960,|
Petrolia, ON, CAN
|NHL Draft||41st overall, 1979|
|Pro Career||1980 – 1999|
Dale Robert Hunter (born July 31, 1960, in Petrolia, Ontario) is a former Canadian player and current co-owner of the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League and current Head Coach of the Washington Capitals of the National Hockey League.
NHL career[edit | edit source]
Selected by the Quebec Nordiques in the 1979 NHL Entry Draft, Hunter played seven seasons in Quebec before he was traded the Washington Capitals in return for a draft pick used to select Joe Sakic. Hunter currently has the second-most penalty minutes in NHL history, amassing a staggering 3565 penalty minutes. Dale Hunter served as the team captain for the Capitals. He broke the 1000 points barrier (and is the NHL record holder for requiring the most games to do so, at 1308, as well having the most penalty minutes when reaching that scoring milestone) and played in the NHL All-Star game in 1997. The following year, he led the fourth seeded Capitals to their first appearance in the Stanley Cup finals, defeating the Boston Bruins, Ottawa Senators, and Buffalo Sabres, but they were swept by the Detroit Red Wings in the finals. He finished off his career with the Colorado Avalanche, the successor to the Nordiques, and helped the team to reach the Western Conference finals, losing in seven games to the eventual cup winners Dallas Stars.
Hunter is the only player in NHL history to score two overtime winners in the final possible game of a Stanley Cup playoff series, scoring in overtime for Quebec in Game 5 of their 1982 opening round best-of-5 series vs. the Montreal Canadiens, and in 1988 scoring against Ron Hextall on a breakaway in overtime for Washington in Game 7 of their opening round best-of-7 series vs. the Philadelphia Flyers.
Post-NHL[edit | edit source]
Hunter's jersey number (#32) was retired by the Capitals on March 11, 2000. During the ceremony, the Capitals presented Hunter with one of the penalty boxes from the Capital Centre (the Capitals former home arena), symbolic of his exceptional amount of time served for penalties. Hunter became the co-owner, president and head coach of the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League, which won the 2005 Memorial Cup. On January 1, 2006, Hunter and his brother, fellow former NHLer Mark Hunter, as co-owners of the London Knights, were named to the 2006 Mayor's New Year's Honours List for Sports by the City of London, Ontario. Hunter's older brother Dave Hunter is also a former NHLer. His son Dylan Hunter is a prospect in the Buffalo Sabres system and his son Tucker currently plays for the Knights.
Notoriety[edit | edit source]
Hunter achieved notoriety for fouling other players. He holds one of the NHL's longest suspension records: 21 games for delivering a cross check to Pierre Turgeon from behind. Late in the deciding Game 6 of the 1993 Patrick Division Semifinals between the Capitals and New York Islanders, Turgeon stole the puck from Hunter and scored, putting the game out of reach. Hunter, who was trailing Turgeon on the play, checked Turgeon just after the goal while he started to celebrate. Turgeon sustained a separated shoulder from the hit, causing him to miss the following playoff series against the Penguins, though he played in Game 7 of that series, and much of the series against the Montreal Canadiens. During that first-round series, Hunter had led his team with eight postseason goals. New NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, who had earlier promised to crack down on violence, suspended Hunter for the first 21 games of the 1993–94 season—at the time, the longest suspension in league history for an on-ice incident (in terms of games missed). Years later, Hunter admitted that he'd gone too far.
However, according to his former Quebec Nordiques coach Michel Bergeron, even though Hunter was nicknamed the "Nuisance" on ice (La Petite Peste in French), he was known to be "humble" in the dressing room and a sort of "gentleman", close to all the players. He was the "perfect player", always the first to arrive at practice and ready to do all his best for the team. Thanks to his charisma, Hunter was a fan favourite in both Quebec and Washington. His leaving made Quebec very sad, and was seen as an obvious "mistake" linked to the team's future decline.
Hunter currently has the second-most penalty minutes in NHL history, after Dave "Tiger" Williams. As of the end of the 2005–06 NHL season, he holds the record for most number of playoff games played without playing for a Stanley Cup-winning team, at 186 games.
Career statistics[edit | edit source]
Hunter is the only player in NHL history to amass over 1000 points and over 3000 minutes and penalties together.
Coaching record[edit | edit source]
|Team||Year||Regular season||Post season|
|LDN||2001–02||68||24||27||10||7||65||5th in West||Lost in Second Round|
|LDN||2002–03||68||31||27||7||3||72||2nd in Midwest||Lost in Second Round|
|LDN||2003–04||68||53||11||2||2||110||1st in Midwest||Lost in Third Round|
|LDN||2004–05||68||59||7||2||0||120||1st in Midwest||Won Memorial Cup|
|LDN||2005–06||68||49||15||-||4||102||1st in Midwest||Lost in OHL Finals|
|LDN||2006–07||68||50||14||-||4||104||1st in Midwest||Lost in Third Round|
|LDN||2007–08||68||38||24||-||6||82||2nd in Midwest||Lost in First Round|
[edit | edit source]
|Washington Capitals captains
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