Eddie Olczyk
Edolczyk.jpg
Position Centre
Shoots Left
Height
Weight
6 ft 1 in (0 m)
200 lb (91 kg)
Teams Chicago Blackhawks
Nationality Flag of the United States American
Born August 16 1966 (1966-08-16) (age 54),
Palos Heights, IL, USA
NHL Draft 3rd overall, 1984
Chicago Blackhawks
Pro Career 1984 – 2000

Eddie Olczyk (born August 16, 1966, Palos Heights, Illinois, U.S.) is an American former head coach of the National Hockey League Pittsburgh Penguins and former centre with the Toronto Maple Leafs, Winnipeg Jets, New York Rangers, Los Angeles Kings, Chicago Blackhawks and Pittsburgh Penguins. He currently serves as the color commentator for the Chicago Blackhawks, in addition to calling games for NBC Sports and the The NHL on Versus. He played 1,031 NHL games and scored 342 goals and 452 assists for a total of 794 points between 1984 and 2000.

Playing career[edit | edit source]

Amateur career[edit | edit source]

Olczyk grew up in Palos Heights, Illinois where he was a star on the Illinois midget team that won the 1982 national title against a Detroit Compuware squad that featured future NHL stars Pat LaFontaine and Al Iafrate. He then moved to Canada to play for the Stratford Cullitons junior team before joining the United States Olympic hockey team.

Professional career[edit | edit source]

Olczyk was drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks in the 1984 NHL Entry Draft, first round, third overall. Olczyk was traded a number of times during his career. In 1987, he was traded to Toronto by Chicago with Al Secord for Rick Vaive, Steve Thomas and Bob McGill. He spent his entire career with Chicago Blackhawks.

Post-playing career[edit | edit source]

Ed-olczyk-h1000-headshot.standard.jpg

He returned to Pittsburgh to become the color analyst for the Penguins on FSN Pittsburgh, where he was given the nickname "Edzo" by current radio announcer and then co-announcer Mike Lange. In 2003, he moved from the booth to the bench and served as head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins from June 11, 2003 until December 15, 2005. Despite adding marquee free-agents, the Penguins started the season with a disappointing 8–17–6 record, leading to Olczyk's dismissal on December 15.

Beginning with the 2006–07 NHL season, Olczyk was the lead color commentator for NHL on NBC, and previously for the NHL on Versus; the latter later rebranded as NBCSN in 2012. Olczyk was also the lead game analyst for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics Men's Ice Hockey where he partners with Mike Emrick.

Perhaps his most notable moment as color commentator came at the end of the 5–3 U.S. win over Canada at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics, when he described the game as being "tremendously tremendous" after U.S. forward Ryan Kesler scored an empty-netter. The audio of Olczyk saying "This has been tremendously tremendous" was an instant hit among hockey enthusiasts and was the subject of many spoofs online. He was selected to repeat his duties alongside Mike Emrick for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

In February 2016, it was announced that Olczyk would be the recipient of the Ring Lardner Award, which was founded in 2002 by the Chicago Athletic Association and honors broadcasters and writers who “exemplify the wit and warmth of Ring Lardner’s writing.” On July 11, 2012, Olczyk became the 16th Blackhawk elected into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame. The Blackhawks honored "Edzo" for his induction in a pregame ceremony on Feb. 22, 2013, at the United Center.

In 2009, Olczyk received an Emmy for “Outstanding Achievement for Individual Excellence On Camera: Programming,” followed by a 2012 Emmy for “Outstanding Achievement for Sports Programs - Sporting Event/Game - Live/Unedited Program/Special.” He was also inducted into the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame in 2013.

On April 8, 2010, Olczyk returned to Pittsburgh to join more than 50 former Penguins being honored in a pre-game ceremony before the final regular season game at Mellon Arena.

On December 30, 2010, it was announced that Foley and Olczyk signed a three-year extension to stay with the Blackhawks.

On May 5, 2014, EA Sports announced that "Eddie O" will provide color commentary for NHL 15 alongside play-by-play commentator Mike Emrick and ice level reporter Ray Ferraro. Since 2018–19 NHL season, the duo (Mike "Doc" Emrick and Eddie Olczyk) will call the Wednesday Night Hockey early game and the Eastern Conference Final with "Inside-the-Glass" reporter Brian Boucher.

Olczyk also has an interest in Thoroughbred horse racing, appearing in advertisements for Xpressbet and serving as a guest commentator and handicapper for major horse racing events such as the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks on the NBC Sports cable network.

Personal life[edit | edit source]

Olczyk has two children playing Junior A hockey in the USHL: Eddie plays for the Waterloo Black Hawks in Waterloo, Iowa and Tom, who plays for the Sioux City Musketeers. His younger brother Rick Olczyk is a former hockey player for Brown University and is currently an assistant general manager of the Edmonton Oilers.

Career statistics[edit | edit source]

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1984–85 Chicago Black Hawks NHL 70 20 30 50 67 15 6 5 11 11
1985–86 NHL 79 29 50 79 47 3 0 0 0 0
1986–87 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 79 16 35 51 119 4 1 1 2 4
1987–88 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 80 42 33 75 55 6 5 4 9 2
1988–89 NHL 80 38 52 90 75
1989–90 NHL 79 32 56 88 78 5 1 2 3 14
1990–91 NHL 18 4 10 14 13
1990–91 Winnipeg Jets NHL 61 26 31 57 69
1991–92 NHL 64 32 33 65 67 6 2 1 3 4
1992–93 NHL 25 8 12 20 26
New York Rangers NHL 46 13 16 29 26
1993–94 NHL 37 3 5 8 28 1 0 0 0 0
1994–95 NHL 20 2 1 3 4
1994–95 Winnipeg Jets NHL 13 2 8 10 8
1995–96 NHL 51 27 22 49 65 6 1 2 3 6
1996–97 Los Angeles Kings NHL 67 21 23 44 45
Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 12 4 7 11 6 5 1 0 1 12
1997–98 NHL 56 11 11 22 35 6 2 0 2 4
1998–99 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 61 10 15 25 29
1998–99 Chicago Wolves IHL 7 2 2 4 6
1999–2000 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 33 2 2 4 12
NHL totals 1031 342 452 794 874 57 19 15 34 57

International Record for Team USA[edit | edit source]

1987 (seventh place), 1989 (sixth place), 1993 (sixth place)


External links[edit | edit source]


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