Olympic medal record
Men's ice hockey
Gold 1980 Lake Placid Team

Mark Thomas Pavelich (born February 28, 1958 in Eveleth, Minnesota) is a retired American professional ice hockey forward who played 355 regular season games in the NHL for the New York Rangers, Minnesota North Stars and San Jose Sharks between 1981 and 1991.

Amateur career[edit | edit source]

He played for the University of Minnesota-Duluth for three seasons from 1977–79.

Pavelich is best known for being a member of the Miracle on Ice, the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey gold medal team. He got the only assist on the game winning goal by Mike Eruzione.

Professional career[edit | edit source]

After the Olympics, Pavelich (who was never drafted by an NHL team) played one season for HC Lugano in Switzerland where he scored 73 points in 60 games. He also returned to the US national team for the 1981 Ice Hockey World Championship tournament. He was brought back to the United States the following year by his former US Olympic coaches Herb Brooks and Craig Patrick, who had assumed control of the New York Rangers since the 1980 Olympics. Despite his small size, Pavelich initially thrived in his role as a quick playmaking centre for the Rangers (he still holds the Ranger record for most points as a rookie(76)). However, his career in New York was ended by a feud with Brooks' successor Ted Sator who introduced a traditional North American dump-and-chase style of play. Pavelich balked at the lack of effectiveness and disorder brought on by the changes.

Pavelich briefly played again for Brooks with the Minnesota North Stars in 1987 before returning to Europe. He had a brief stint in Britain for the Dundee Rockets and played two seasons in Italy for HC Bolzano. The expansion San Jose Sharks brought him out of retirement for the 1991–92 NHL season, but he would play only two games for the Sharks before retiring for good.

On February 23, 1983, Pavelich became one of only two Americans to score 5 goals in a single game. Mickey Roach had achieved the feat in 1920.

Awards and Accomplishments[edit | edit source]

  • WCHA First All-Star Team (1979)
  • NCAA West First All-American Team (1979)

External links[edit | edit source]

Mark Pavelich's biography at Legends of Hockey

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